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August 26, 2009 / Greg Vaughn

National Park Rangers

Ranger Chuck Smith at Rainbow Bridge National Monument

Ranger Chuck Smith at Rainbow Bridge National Monument

When I was a kid, the Rangers at National Parks we visited on family vacations were among my favorite heroes. Always friendly, they knew everything about the outdoors and wore those ever-so-cool Smokey the Bear type hats. But for some turns of fate, I might well have become a Ranger myself.

These days, as a travel and nature photographer, I find these same wonderful folk to be an outstanding resource for information and help in getting the photos I want and need. Whenever I’m traveling to National Park, National Monument, BLM or National Forest lands, I try to make it a point to check in with the local Ranger District office or visitor center. Over the years, without fail these men and women have repeatedly pointed me to the best photo ops in their territory and provided valuable information. There’s something special about these folk, and I’d like to give them a big THANKS for their help and friendliness.

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3 Comments

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  1. Amanda Atkinson / Jul 3 2010 4:05 pm

    I work for Ranger Chuck Smith now at Rainbow Bridge and I would like to thank you for your accolade to park rangers like him. Working for Chuck and the parks has given me a great appreciation for this incredible American invention. Park rangers are not just guardians of the wilderness, but they inspire generations as modern storytellers. It is wonderful to see that their efforts are worth while in the eyes of the visitor!

  2. Bob Smith / May 16 2013 4:01 pm

    Chuck is my cousin. You caught the essence of what a good person he is. Thank you.

  3. Daren Hale / Jul 23 2013 7:38 pm

    We met Ranger Chuck Smith this past summer (2013) and he is the the memory of Rainbow Bridge he made there a visit to last a life time. Thanks Ranger Chuck Smith

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