Would they listen to me? NOPE. Would they respect my “authority”? NOPE. Would they snark at me and think of me as a huge dork? YUP.
…It sounded too good to be true, probably too good for a Freshman who was hesitant about their STEM major and had just decided they wanted to try research. But instead of doubting myself or worrying about my lack of geological knowledge, I decided to get out of my own way and go for it.
We were situated underneath a bridge which was frequented by hikers, so throughout the day people would stop and stare, prompting us to greet them and strike a conversation. Everyone we spoke to was super excited to hear about what we were doing and often asked intriguing questions. It was amazing to connect with so many individuals, to the point where knowledge of our work was being spread throughout the Many Glacier area.
… I began to understand that park rangers not only have a duty to protect the park because it is their job, but also because it is their home.
I could tell it wasn’t going to be a usual hike. First of all, unlike the trail to Iceberg, the trail was pretty void of people. This made our group feel a real intimacy with the wilderness around us. Second of all, after walking just a little bit on the trail, we came to realize that the trail had turned into one giant incline. Oof.