Frequently Asked Questions

Who are the Canadian Rangers?

Canadian Rangers are adult members of the Canadian Armed Forces who live in remote and isolated communities of Canada. They are part-time reservists who are responsible for protecting Canada's sovereignty as well as defending her coastal interests.

What do Canadian Rangers do?

Canadian Rangers provide a military presence in support of Canada's sovereignty. They report unusual activities, collect data of significance in support of military operations, and conduct surveillance and sovereignty patrols as required.

Where are the Canadian Rangers located?

Canadian Rangers are located in 200 remote, isolated and coastal communities across Canada. The majority of Canadian Ranger patrols are located north of 60 and along Canada's east and west coasts.

Are Canadian Rangers members of the Canadian Forces?

Yes. Canadian Rangers are members of Canada's Reserve Force. They play an important role in assisting CAF members by providing local expertise, guidance and advice, conducting Northern Warning System patrols, and providing local assistance to search and rescue activities.

How are the Canadian Rangers organized?

Canada is divided into five geographical areas called Canadian Ranger Patrol Groups or CRPGs. Each CRPG is responsible for a specific number of patrols, and each patrol consists of a minimum of eight Canadian Rangers.

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How do I join the Canadian Rangers?

Contact the Canadian Ranger Sergeant in your community. A complete list is available at: the Canadian Rangers and Junior Canadian Rangers contact page.

How do I become a Canadian Ranger?

In order to become a Canadian Ranger you must meet the following criteria:

  • You must be 18 years old
  • You must by physically and mentally capable of carrying out Canadian Ranger duties
  • You must be a Canadian citizen, have a Social Insurance Number, and reside in Canada
  • You must not have been convicted of a serious offence under the Criminal Code of Canada for which a pardon has not been granted, including firearms offences, violent crimes, drug-related offences, and other offences at the discretion of the Canadian Ranger Instructor
  • You must not be a member of any other sub-component of the Canadian Armed Forces or another national military or police branch (RCMP, Coast Guard)
  • You must be knowledgeable and personally equipped to survive and efficiently operate on the land.

How old do I have to be in order to become a Canadian Ranger?

Potential members must be 18 years old and be willing to join the Canadian Forces.

Will I be paid?

Yes. Canadian Rangers receive up to 12 days annual pay in addition to compensation for any official CAF taskings. Canadian Rangers also receive reimbursement for wear and tear on their personal vehicles when they are used in support of official Canadian Ranger activities.

Will I wear a uniform?

Yes. Canadian Rangers are easily identified by their bright red sweatshirts and red ball caps or toques. Canadian Rangers are also provided with a red brassard (armlet), a red t-shirt, and an orange safety vest.

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What equipment will I be given?

All Canadian Rangers are issued a No. 4 Lee Enfield rifle and ammunition. Canadian Rangers also have access to a first aid kit, Global Positioning System (GPS), compass and short wave radio through their patrol groups.

What is the time commitment for being a Canadian Ranger?

This varies from community to community. Many Canadian Rangers fulfil their military commitments while engaged in personal activities such as fishing or hunting. Canadian Rangers meet as a group six or seven times a year at a minimum.

What training will I receive?

All Canadian Rangers participate in a 10-day Basic Ranger Qualification Course that includes seven days of hands-on training in the local community. Topics covered include rifle training, general military knowledge, navigation (map & compass, GPS), first aid, search and rescue, and communications.

Canadian Rangers also receive patrol sustainment training which may include courses in first aid, flood and fire evacuation planning, search and rescue, major air disaster assistance, communications, firing exercises, and setting up bivouac sites (igloos or tents).

Will I be deployed overseas in case of war?

No. Although the Canadian Rangers are an important operational resource for the CAF, their service is mainly focussed on domestic matters. This is usually defined as defending Canada's interests at home. It is extremely unlikely that a Canadian Ranger will be called upon to serve overseas.

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What is the compulsory retirement age for Canadian Rangers?

There is no compulsory retirement age for Canadian Rangers. They can continue to serve as long as they are physically and mentally capable of doing so. In fact a Canadian Ranger currently holds the record for longest continued service in the Canadian Forces.

What else do I need to know about the Canadian Rangers?

Canadian Rangers are proud, dedicated members of the Canadian Armed Forces. They are active, well-respected members of their communities and often serve in leadership positions. Many Canadian Rangers are also involved with the Junior Canadian Ranger Program as positive role models and educators for the youth in their communities.

How can I show my support for the Canadian Rangers?

You can write letters to your local Member of Parliament and local government officials encouraging their continued support of this worthwhile program.

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