Joe Gutkoski describes his experiences as a smokejumper from 1950 to 1963. He discusses the training facilities at the Nine Mile Ranger Station in Montana, as well as the duties of a squad leader and a foreman, both of which he worked as during his career. Gutkoski describes the aftermath of the 1949 Mann Gulch Fire, including the U.S. Forest Service’s investigation of it. He also talks about being a part of the first experiments of jumping out of a helicopter without a parachute in 1954, fighting fires throughout the western United States, and experiencing the rivalries between different smokejumper bases.
Smokejumpers Montana Biography; Smokejumping Montana History; Smokejumping Equipment and supplies; Forest fires Montana
Smokejumpers 1984 Reunion Oral History Collection, OH 133, Archives and Special Collections, Mansfield Library, University of Montana-Missoula
University of Montana--Missoula. Mansfield Library
Copyright to this collection is held by the Maureen and Mike Mansfield Library, University of Montana-Missoula. Permission may be required for use of this item. For further information please contact Archives and Special Collections: (406) 243-2053 / firstname.lastname@example.org
Oral History Number
1 sound cassette (60 min.) : analog + 1 transcript (17 p. : 28 cm.)
Gutkoski, Joe, "Joe Gutkoski Interview, July 22, 1984" (1984). Smokejumpers 1984 Reunion Oral History Project. OH 133-043.