Ingrid Pond

Posted on May 6th, 2013

Student, Dalhousie University
Esker Lakes Ontario Ranger, 2010
My parents fostered in me from a young age a love of the outdoors and the environment around me. I was encouraged to spend time outside rather than watching TV. It wasn’t until I was a Ranger with the Ontario Ranger Program that I fully realized how important the outdoors was to me. I heard about the Ontario Ranger program through my brother who was a Ranger in 2009. Hearing his stories of canoe trips, clearing trails, and working with First Nations in Moosonee, I knew I wanted to do it the following summer. 
A major aspect that made this program so unique was the fact that it physically removed you from your natural setting – you were living and working in a completely new, foreign environment. For me, and for most Rangers, it was the first time I had been that far away from home for an extended period of time. The drive up to camp was a long 7.5 hours – the odometer ticking off the miles from home. Knowing that I had driven less than halfway to the northernmost point of Ontario made me realize how vast Ontario really is. The many miles between me, and my comfortable, southern Ontario home seemed like an adventure, a challenge to overcome. 
Many Rangers who come from the Toronto area are struck with awe at their first sight of stars on a clear night, or the beauty of mist rising off a lake. From this connection with the outdoors grows awareness for the environment and the north. Northern Ontario often seems like very distant thought for many southern Ontario residents. The gap between the south and the north is huge, but bringing youth from the south to work in the north helps to bridge that gap. For me, the Ranger Program cultivated an appreciation of northern Ontario; the landscape, the culture, the quiet. I know that no matter where I am or what I am doing, I need to be able to feel that serenity that I found as a ranger, and only comes from being close to nature. To feel as at home in a place as I felt at Rangers is what I am always searching for.


Posted in not categorized    Tagged with Esker Lakes, 2010


2 Comments

Emily - May 8th, 2013 at 6:56 PM
I love the last line - - "To feel as at home in a place as I felt at Rangers is what I am always searching for". Me too!
Gwen Hochheimer - August 6th, 2013 at 2:08 PM
Ingrid, if we ever manage to connect there are several volunteer groups related to environmental stewardship here in Nova Scotia that you might enjoy and that could use your assistance. Gwen Hochheimer, past Board Member, Sackville Rivers Association, past Member Halifax Regional Trails Association, past Central Region Rep to Nova Scotia Trails, TransCanada Trail. Cashel Lake '78, Kap kig iwan '79, Esker Lakes '80.

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This blog is an online campagin against the closure of the Ontario Ranger Program. If you are interested in contributing please email us at: friendsoftheorp@gmail.com.
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