Another Adventure with the Ready Rangers

When I dreamed of stumbling through the woods, I was always accompanied by the Ready Ranger Pack. This plastic kit from Aurora always seemed a bit bulky in ads, but boy did it ever look useful.

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6 thoughts on “Another Adventure with the Ready Rangers

  1. Hmmm… I always wanted one, but this always seemed like a really cool-looking, albeit useless-in-real-life kit.

    P.A. Horn is useless, does not summon any help. “Countless” signals are required from the (weak?) signal light to get a reply. No evidence of a Morse Code chart so the kids can actually communicate with the tower. No matches, flint, or any other way to start a fire to keep warm and stave off attacks by wild animals.

    On the other hand, these kids seem kind of dumb to go around calling themselves Rangers. When trapped by a rockslide, they don’t simply climb over the rocks or just go back the way they came. Instead, they choose to be trapped and spend the night out in the woods, requiring an expensive airlift rescue. They need a gadget to find the North Star, which is pointless anyway since they aren’t going anywhere. Can’t read a map, which would tell them how far they are from the park, and where they are. They need a periscope to see a bright, plainly obvious signal light from the tower. Doesn’t seem like they’ve told anyone where they’ve gone in case they don’t show up after a while.

    How many would-be Rangers, I wonder, even now are littering the Wilderness, nothing more than skeletons enshrouded in orange plastic ponchos, stretched out on the ground with with Ready Ranger kits set up like little tombstones in front of them?

  2. A windowshopper says:

    Ah, the stuff that adventurous dreams are made of! I remember seeing this ad on the backs of comic books, my mouth watering at imagined dangers overcome with the help of this highly technical and utterly practical backpack! Lucky was the lad who found one of these beneath their Christmas tree, methinks. I’ve seen cynical reactions to this toy on other blogs. It’s perhaps not one of the greatest toys, but it at least offered the prospect of high adventure without a rubber knife or simulated firearm.

  3. Robert Robinson says:

    I remember when I got the Ready Ranger back pack for Xmas. I convinced my friends that if we went deep into the woods, my pack had everything to help us find our way back. Well, the three of us went into the woods and got lost. None knew how to use a compass, much or less take a compass reading before we left. And much to our surprise, we discovered that most of the stuff in the pack were meant to be used at night. We finally made it a house and asked the owners if we could call home. It turned out we were only about half mile from our houses. We all got in trouble and my friends were kind of pissed off at me. I don’t know why.

  4. Jim Britton says:

    I got one for Christmas 1973. Never ventured into the woods with it but had a great time in the backyard with friends. Heck, it was fun to play with inside. You could have all kinds of imaginary adventures!

  5. Jim Britton says:

    BTW re Mark’s comment. There was a Morse Code chart in the handbook that came with it! I’d love to find one of these kits again just for the nostalgia and coolness factor. Although lame by today’s standards tech wise, many old school toys broadened your mind/imagination and were a lot cooler than toys of today! I miss the James Bond / Man from UNCLE spy kits and guns, Major Matt Mason space sets, cheesy Star Trek phasers and Ready Ranger kits of my youth!

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