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The U.S. Forest Service And Guerilla Grows


New Member
I'll be the 1st person to acknowledge that some Forest Service personel are real a-holes.
Others however are some of the nicest people you'll ever want to meet.
Back in the 70's, before my Forest Service gigs, on my hikes I would always bring a trash bag or 2 with me and haul out other people's garbage. One day a Ranger suggested I become an "official volunteer".
I said "Can I still get drunk around the campfire?"
"Not in uniform."
"Uniform, I get a uniform?"
"Yeah, and a shiney badge AND a key that unlocks every Forest Service Road in America."
Now THAT sounded interesting.
I did a number of jobs with the Forest Service. In addition to trash hauling I did trail repair and law enforcement ride-alongs.

I found out that people treated me totally different when I was in uniform.
With repect. It was cool. People would be polite and somewhat submissive, even though I had no power except to write up camp-fire pemits.
But the unforms are the same ones the real Rangers wear, and the badge was ultra-cool.
I would freak out people sometimes, occasionally on purpose.
Once I stopped on the way to the woods, already in uniform, at a grow shop and the help thought I was a cop.
I had a brown van (looked like an immigration van), and I'd pull into a 7-11 and all the immigrants hanging around outside would flee.
If I had wanted to, I could have gone hog-wild. I had a catalog and could order all sorts of cop stuff. Like those braided lether belts, and attach those heavy-duty pepper spray holsters, ammo pouches and even carry a night stick. But that's not me.
There were 2 big advantages I haven't mentioned yet.
One was, if there were going to be any garden busts, I'd often hear about them in advance, from hanging out with the real Rangers.
Only once did I hear of anything going on in my neck of the woods.
There was a team of 4 US Marines, guys trained in tracking, out in my balliwick. They were looking for a rumored large grow. Mine was small, just 7 plants. So they weren't looking for mine specifically, but mine was in the same area.
They never found it. Ranger Danger knows how to get around without leaving tracks heh heh.
The other advantage was that the Rangers stick together. Once my van broke down and a Ranger stopped, radioed in to a Forest Service tow truck, I was towed to a garage and paid for 50% of the repairs (cause I was on duty when it happened). And I'd see them out in the woods and they'd say Hi and we'd hang out for a bit.
I got stoned with several real and volunteer Rangers, inc. 1 Forest Service cop.

Generally speaking, the Forset Service only looks for grows that have been reported.
If they find plants, they rip them up and take 'em with them.
They DON'T stake out grows. They aren't into busting growers.
The one main exception to this is if the grow area is booby-trapped. They WILL stake those out.
If you DO get caught, being in a pot-friendly state like CA. won't help you. The Nat'l Forest is a different jurisdiction. That's Federal land baby. You will be tried in FEDERAL court, downtown, the courtrooms with the brass doors.

There were 3 instances where I was teamed with real Ranger S. when we were send out on like a "scouting" type deal, looking for reported gardens. All 3 times we found them. I'm as good in finding people's trails as I am in hiding my own.
2 of the grows were rather small:10--20 plants.
The 3rd was about 50 plants. In the first two gardens the growers were growing cool, blended in with the existing flora, neat and clean. We reported back to dispatch that we never found those 1st 2.
The 3rd was a different matter.
The growers had chain-sawed down 500-year old manzanita trees. The grow area was littered with toxic insecticide and chem. fetilizer containers. And trash like candy bar wrappers, beer cans, etc.
That grow had been reported by a fisherman who went to fish at an area of a stream he usually had good luck at and there were no fish, not even fry. And huge patches of algae where there shouldn't have been any.
He hiked upstream, found the garden and reported it.
THAT one we reported back and it was taken down.


New Member
TheLife said:
It's something i wouldn't mind doing as a career.
I'm really into the Environment, and the only place i can find peace of mind, is when i'm deep in the wilderness.

I think i'm gonna do some "job hunting" tomorrow morning.
Definitely gonna hit up some of the local State Forests.

Thanks for the idea RangerDanger!:headbang:
I hear you bro.. I bet I could do this up north as a summer job.. Would be pretty relaxing and enjoyable... Humm.. I'll check it out too ;)


New Member
>did ya ever run into any people smoking ganja and be like
"i'm gonna have to confinscate your illegal substances/drug paraphernalia"
-No. I didn't have the power and even if I had i wouldn't have.

>Are you still a Ranger today? Or how long did you do this for?"
I stopped doing that when I moved up north. I did it for nearly 30 years.
When I lived in SoCal I went to the woods to get away from the city.
When I retired in '00, I moved up to NorCal and I now LIVE in the woods.
In fact, I haven't camped not even once since I moved. Cause where I live now is like camping, but with cable.

Let me add: there are 2 entities that administer "the woods".
One is the U.S. Forest Service (in National Forests), the other is the National Park Service (the guys with the Smokey Bear hats). They work in National Parks like Yosemite.


New Member
Very awesome story Ranger! I enjoyed reading that.

So what did you do with the 3rd find? Were the plants flowering yet???


New Member
Ranger S and I did nothing to the plants.
We just confirmed that there was indeed a garden where the fisherman reported there was. A team was sent out there to rip up the plants.
As I recall it was mid-summer--the plants were still in veg.

Earth Child

New Member
That's sick. I don't want pesticides in my herb. That's so disgusting. Adding that to the fact that they went so far as to cut down those trees? That's just disgusting... These are the people that make me think we have quite a pitiful race...

Well, I've decided what I would like to do for a living, haha.

Some quick info, though.... how does one become a park ranger? And is the pay enough to make a living off of?

Peace and love always

:peace: Earth Child


New Member
EC, first of all I didn't work for the Park Service.
The US Forest Service is a different entity.
Pay is commiserate with what you do but it is VERY good. A friend and his wife both worked for the Forest Service for 30 years (REAL Rangers, not unpaid volunteers like me) and bought a million dollar ranch about 10 years ago.

I if you want to find out more about working for them, check thier web site.

Earth Child

New Member
Wow. That's awesome. I'm gonna' look into it, for sure. I mean, I know I'm young and everything. But I definately want to look ahead.

Is there any school or anything I have to take?

:peace: Earth Child


New Member
RangerDanger said:
I had a brown van (looked like an immigration van), and I'd pull into a 7-11 and all the immigrants hanging around outside would flee.

Not anymore !! Now the Immigrations are scared of them.
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