Wednesday, July 13, 2016

OZAR - 'The Green Men in the Trees'

As the weeks fly by at Ozark National Scenic Riverways, some of the busiest weekends have come and gone.

In my third week at Ozark, I had the opportunity to ride in all three districts. I started the week with a cave tour of the Round Spring Cave, the only cave in the park that is open to visitors, and is beautifully decorated with large formations that truly take the visitors breath away at the sheer power and beauty of waters power to erode and displace. Also, with the heat index especially high, visitors and myself enjoyed its stable temperature, at a pleasant 65 degrees. I was able to discuss extrication techniques in the cave with some of my fellow rangers, of both medical patients and prisoners. Over the weekend, I surveyed the Jacks Fork, where I helped Rangers to set up a visibility blind to watch visually for violations that happen on a gravel bar downstream from the popular launch site, the Alley Spring campground. We were able to observe violations such as minor in possession, as well as the assimilation of state law, the use of a beer bong on a Missouri river.

In my fifth week, the park was experiencing especially high visitation, as the weekend before the Fourth of July is often one of the busiest. After riding in the Upper Current, where some of the more stringent fishing regulations are enforced to allow for sportsmanship for more experienced fisherman, I helped to survey the river on the Jacks Fork. Myself and Ranger Chris Figge and Law Enforcement Specialist Jodi Towery surveyed the river on the Jacks Fork, and issued over 15 tickets, of which were primarily for minor in possession.

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