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Mountain High



They say a journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step, or maybe it’s that after a thousand Journey shows it’s time to begin your first 12-step program. Introductory analogies aside, this week’s listings for outdoor activities all come with the caveat that we should wear as much hunter orange as possible for the foreseeable future. Even in bed. It looks good, and orange is a color known to stimulate certain appetites.

You’ll want to nurture your appetite this weekend, despite conventional wisdom that says exercise and eating aren’t the healthiest of bedfellows. Missoulians on Bicycles dares to combine the two during their 29th Annual Progressive Dinner Ride on Sunday, Oct. 29. Each rider contributes part of the meal, which will be ingested at five locations around town. If you’re interested, give Lech Szumera a call at 543-4889—he’ll assign you a course to bring and fill you in on the details. And be glad it’s not a Progressive Dinner Swim.

For the less active among you, or maybe just those who’ve already worked out and eaten, this week boasts two outdoor-related film offerings. The first is Teton Gravity Research’s Anomaly, a ski and snowboard film, which shows in the Urey Lecture Hall on Thursday, Oct. 26, at 7:30 PM. The film reportedly features a winter-sport enthusiast surviving a 25-story free fall, which is reason enough to part with $9 at the door.

Round out your celluloid powderfest with Smoke and Mirrors, a telemark skiing flick showing at the Crystal Theatre on Sunday, Oct. 29, at 7 PM. Six bucks gets you a seat, but the drinks will cost you extra.

One overlap of the disparate wilds of the evergreen forest and the urban jungle is that furbearing critter eating out of your compost pile. The Missoula City Council Conservation Committee is looking for input on the topic of urban wildlife. We’re talking about deer and skunks here, not the milling hook-up crowd near Hammer Jack’s at 2:30 AM on Sunday morning. The Committee is drafting an Urban Wildlife Management Plan, which will address the issues, opportunites and concerns posed by wildlife living within the Missoula Urban Area. Let them know what you think about, among other topics, “limited public hunting” in urban areas. Hunter orange could become a wherever-you-go necessity, but it all depends on your input. Visit to participate.

All you bruisers out there with sincere bloodlust and the scars to prove it, go form your own hockey league. For the rest of us, here’s a gentle reminder that registration for Glacier Ice Rink’s youth and adult hockey programs ends Nov. 1. The season runs from November to March and beginners are welcome. For more information on youth hockey, call Gary Jahrig at 880-9007, and for the adult league, call Traver McLeod at 239-5395. Visit if you’d prefer to avoid human contact.

Now, news from a bit farther north: it is time to bid a winter’s adieu to Glacier’s Going-to-the-Sun Road again. Maintenance crews will be removing guardrails, signs, trash cans and other summer artifacts in preparation for avalanche season. The Sun Road closes at 8 AM on Nov. 1, so Halloween seems like the perfect day to register for hockey and get in one last drive. And don’t fear—39 miles of the famous highway will remain open for vehicle use through the fall.

Now, lace the boots and, again, don the blaze orange, because the Rocky Mountaineers are going over Lolo Pass and plunging deep into Idaho on Saturday, Oct. 28. Julie Kahl will be leading the group, so give her a call at 543-6508 if you’d like to go.

Finally, those of you who feel that our public lands are being managed by a bureaucracy unwilling or unable to hear the opinion of the people will be overjoyed to learn that the Bitterroot National Forest (BNF) will resume its monthly “Lunch and Learn” program on Wednesday, Nov. 1, at noon. This month’s topic is “Wilderness Dams of the Bitterroot,” so bring your lunch and a desire to talk sediment to the BNF Supervisor’s Office at 1801 N. First St. in Hamilton. Call Dixie Dies at 363-7154 for info.

And while you’re at it, remove the dam holding back your pool of outdoor events and send them my way.

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