Elk Herd at Elk Prairie
Completed: June 5, 2014
Junior Ranger – Senior Friendly
This program was well designed for kids of all ages. Based on your age you earn a certain number of badges to qualify. The activities in the booklet have badges, one to three, in the corner.
This program rates a Senior Friendly designation because the upper age group is listed as 13 and up. I stayed overnight in the area so I had plenty of time to earn my 24 badges, and then some. As the park cover quite a bot of distance if you pick up the booklet as you enter the park for the north or south, you should be able to complete any of the levels in a couple of hours.
The level of activities vary from simple to challenging and cover a wide variety of natural events. Some of the titles include; The Redwood Puzzle, Be A Wildlife Detective, Tide Pool Bingo, Ranger Beach Report, How A Tree Works, Be A Tree Works, The Nursery Log, The Octopus Tree Mystery, Timber Time, Hidden Life on the Edge, Banana Slug Slide and several others. In all there are 25 different activities with badges to earn.
It includes answering questions, checking off observations, drawing, identifying objects, cutting and constructing and even a song to sing to the rangers, if you want. I enjoyed the tree information, the beach report, solving the Octopus Tree Mystery and decoding a pictorial message. Locating all of the animals hiding in the Forest was the most challenging and fun. Finding the little vole took forever!
Another unique feature with this booklet was most pages included a picture of a real-life ranger in the park. As Ranger Adam checked my booklet over he would mention which ranger was still working in the park, or where other rangers had been assigned. I appreciated the time Ranger Adam took in reviewing and discussing my completed book.
As this park is administered by both the State of California and the federal NPS they share the Junior Ranger programs. Ranger Adam presented me with both the Redwoods National Park Junior Ranger badge and the California State Parks Junior badge and patch. A two-for-one!
Booklet with badges