Backcountry ranger, author to discuss personal responsibility as stewards of the land during March 5 presentation

Author, journalist and backcountry ranger Ken Ilgunas will speak about his journey across North America at Mount Mercy University on March 5 at 6:30 p.m. in Betty Cherry Heritage Hall.

Ilgunas trekked 1,700 miles across North America, following the proposed route of the Keystone XL pipeline to answer the question: What is our personal responsibility as stewards of the land?

He will recall his adventure, the world's first modern journey across private property, during which he trespassed over the Great Plains. He will also discuss the people of the heartland, the right to roam, and the stories that form the basis of his book, “Trespassing Across America.”

Both a travel memoir and a reflection on climate change, “Trespassing Across America” is filled with colorful characters, harrowing physical trials, and strange encounters with the weather, terrain, and animals of America’s plains. Ilgunas grapples with difficult questions about our place in the world: What is our personal responsibility as stewards of the land? As members of a rapidly warming planet? As mere individuals up against something as powerful as the fossil fuel industry?

Ilgunas has a Bachelor of Arts from SUNY Buffalo in history and English, and a Master of Arts in liberal studies from Duke University. His other books include “Walden on Wheels” and “This Land is Our Land.”

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