Park Ranger Zachary Gross
Park Service Profiles
At Landsford Canal State Park, home to rocky shoals spider lilies, works Park Ranger Zachary Gross. Growing up in Easley South Carolina, Ranger Gross spent plenty of time at Table Rock State Park as a child. He continued to explore his love for the environment by pursuing a degree in Environmental Studies at Southern Wesleyan University and graduated in 2017. While obtaining his degree, Ranger Gross began his journey as an Assistant Park Ranger at the state park he grew up visiting, Table Rock. It was here where he realized, “I fell in love with the diversity of work, as well as, the variety of amazing people that we have the opportunity to interact with on a daily basis.” After about two years, he accepted a position as an Off-Park Ranger at Devils Fork State Park. “I haven’t specifically known that I was going to be a park ranger since I was young, but I did however, always have a dream of working outdoors while helping people and the environment,” Gross said. With three years of park related experience Ranger Gross has acquired skills that range from customer service, natural and historical interpretation, grounds maintenance, emergency management, supervisory skills and retail management. Ranger Gross says this experience, in combination with his education, “has given me an incredible amount of diverse experience and has ultimately prepared me for any given situation.”
Ranger Gross, who is currently engaged and planning a wedding for next summer, says one of his funniest experiences as park ranger was during his time at Table Rock State Park when he, along with several other rangers, were tasked with rescuing an abandoned and injured Canadian Goose. With nets in hand, he remembers spending 10 hilarious minutes goose chasing and diving to apprehend the goose and send it to a rehabilitation center. From the looks he received from park guests, he realized that at that moment, every day as a park ranger would bring something new. Ranger Gross says one of the most satisfying things about the job is, “walking through the campgrounds and hearing children whisper to their parents, ‘Look! It’s a park ranger.’ and having the opportunity to stop and introduce myself to the family. Seeing their faces light up with excitement is an amazing feeling.” Throughout all his experiences he loves the rewarding opportunity to wear a variety of different “hats” from day to day. We appreciate and thank Ranger Gross for all of his hard work!