A young ranger in the Montana wilderness discovers the great forces of nature while learning the importance of honor, trust and integrity. Legendary veteran ranger Bill Bell educates the young man and guides him toward manhood. The year is 1919-a time when being a ranger meant more than operating expensive equipment. Forest fires were fought with guts and courage, not chemicals and airplanes. Bill Bell was the toughest ranger in an elite crew of very rugged men. A figure of heroic proportions, he was generally feared and respected by all. It was even rumored that he had at one time killed a sheep farmer, which only fueled his already enormous reputation. The young ranger does everything to remain in the good graces of Bill Bell, the senior ranger he idolizes. Their tentative rapport grows into a friendship through a hilarious and heroic rite of passage in which the younger ranger meets the test-and the woman of his dreams.