When Marjane Ambler and her husband, Terry Wehrman, lived in Yellowstone from 1984 until 1993, storytelling was still the favorite community pastime. A journalist by training, Marjane could not resist chronicling those stories of life on a modern frontier.
A trip to the grocery store involved a 30-mile snowmobile ride through bison herds over a treacherous pass. Everyone they knew -- including themselves -- was transformed by living amongst bison and bears, forest fires, avalanches, and whiteouts. The book explores the joys and the hardships of their lives.
If you have trouble bringing up the links, go to the particular site and search for "Marjane Ambler."
From Laura Paskus in High Country News:
"In her memoir, Ambler doesn't romanticize the isolation of Yellowstone's backcountry in winter. At that time, Lake's winter population consisted of 12 employees and their spouses. With travel by snowmobile the only way in or out of the village – on a route that required crossing avalanche-prone Sylvan Pass – there was plenty of 'forced togetherness' and little privacy. The friendships forged in such intimate and interdependent conditions, however, have survived for decades." (See full review at http://www.hcn.org/issues/46.8/backcountry-memoir
From Tom Vaughan, former superintendent, Chaco National Monument:
"Yellowstone may have teeth, but Mother Nature began to eat 800,000 acres of Yellowstone 25 years ago this month. Marjane's account of the uncertainty, frustration and sheer terror she and others in the park went through during the weeks fires raged across Yellowstone brings it all home with a rush of immediacy as we mourn 19 firefighters dead in Arizona in a fire season just getting started. The dread and doom is lightened, however, by her recollection of looking at the list she had made of things she needed to remember to take with her if they had to evacuate Lake and seeing her husband had added "Terry" at the bottom of the list." (See full review at National Park Traveler)
From Geoffrey O’Gara, author and Emmy-winning documentary producer:
"We think of Yellowstone as one of the last vestiges of wilderness. In Marjane Ambler’s capable hands, we learn that it is also one of the last places in North America where people live in a real community – isolated, buffeted by nature, and deeply, intimately dependent on one another. Life and death, love and loss – it’s all here, in an extraordinary setting, thanks to an extraordinary storyteller."
from Polly Welts Kaufman, author of National Parks and the Woman's Voice: A History:
Marjane Ambler's book demonstrates how important family teams are now and always have been since Yellowstone realized the necessity of building community in remote places. Ambler describes her own experiences with vivid detail and includes stories of other adventurous park service families over the years.
From Fritz Saam, Masters in Human and Organizational Systems, Fielding Graduate University:
“I can more clearly see now what women do best: They notice the cost of the journey and are there to comfort others. They are the silent warriors and historians -- the golden thread running through the fabric of life that is not noticed often enough.”
From Cindy Mernin, wife of ranger and year-round resident of Yellowstone interior for 25 years (1971-1996):
"It wrapped itself around my heart, and I felt like I was going home."
From Cassandra Leoncini, Leoncini Book Consulting:
"Readers with an interest in any of the more rugged national parks, from Maine to Alaska, will find this book a gratifying experience. It conveys cultural history, women's history, natural history, community awareness, survival stories, and humor."
From Alice Siebecker, retired NPS Ranger, Yellowstone:
"Marjane Ambler’s journals of her time spent living in the interior of Yellowstone interweave with the stories of pioneering earlier rangers and their families. With her natural story-telling ability, she will pull you into the close-knit communities. By the end of her chronicle you won’t want to say good bye to the hardy souls she has introduced and brought into your life."
Wyoming Public Television Chronicle (one half-hour interview by the late Richard Ager with Marjane and Terry)
Wyoming Public Radio:
Cody Wyoming Enterprise:
Marshalltown, Iowa, Times-Republican