News and culture through the lens of Southern California.
Hosted by

50 seasons later, a Yosemite ranger still loves his job




Water flows down Yosemite Falls, the highest waterfall in North America in the Sierra Nevada mountain range at Yosemite National Park on March 25, 2015 in California, where the snowpack in the mountain range hit an unprecedented low this week, falling below historic lows of 2014 and 1977 for the state's driest winter in sixty-five years of record keeping. It is the melt from the Sierra Nevada  and Cascade mountain range snowpacks from which California gets its water, but snowpack measurements due to be reported next week are expected to be the lowest on record leaving the parched 'Golden State' in its fourth year of drought.  AFP PHOTO / FREDERIC J. BROWN        (Photo credit should read FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP/Getty Images)
Water flows down Yosemite Falls, the highest waterfall in North America in the Sierra Nevada mountain range at Yosemite National Park on March 25, 2015 in California, where the snowpack in the mountain range hit an unprecedented low this week, falling below historic lows of 2014 and 1977 for the state's driest winter in sixty-five years of record keeping. It is the melt from the Sierra Nevada and Cascade mountain range snowpacks from which California gets its water, but snowpack measurements due to be reported next week are expected to be the lowest on record leaving the parched 'Golden State' in its fourth year of drought. AFP PHOTO / FREDERIC J. BROWN (Photo credit should read FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP/Getty Images)
FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP/Getty Images

Listen to story

05:39
Download this story 2MB

It's easy to see why anyone would love Yosemite National Park: Half Dome, giant sequoias, gushing waterfalls (well, in the right season).

One man who knows Yosemite better than most is Fred Koegler. This summer, he's celebrating his 50th season as a park ranger there.

Koegler's history with the park goes back to the summer of 1965, when needed a summer job in college. He later became a school teacher and coach at Verdugo High School. But, he kept ranger role at Yosemite on the side. It eventually progressed to the position he holds today: Horse ranger.

"It's just great to be in the outdoors and patrol the campground, and talk to many, many people from all over the world and the United States, and some kids that have never seen a horse in their life," he said. "To see their smile after they pet my horse, King, and it's just a thrill to be here every summer."

To listen to the full interview, click on the blue audio player above.