As there is just too much to do outside this week, we’ll dispense with the intriguing lead-in and get straight to the meat and potatoes of the wind whistling past your helmeted hair.
First in line for ski racing event listings is Moonlight Basin, which features NASTAR racing on the weekend of Jan. 5–7, as well as other weekends throughout the winter and spring. The races run daily from 11 AM to 3 PM on the Powder River run, and offer contestants the chance to zip around gates and race against the clock, their friends and even the U.S. Ski team.
The Jeep Terrain Park Challenge Slopestyle comes to Big Mountain on Sat., Jan. 6, at 9 AM. Skiers and snowboarders above the age of 7 get two runs through the Fishbowl Terrain Park, with judges picking the top three fancypants for medals and general praise. And on Sun., Jan. 7, the Tommy Moe Kids’ League, which gives young skiers (ages 5–12) a chance to improve their race skills, begins with registration in Big Mountain’s Moguls Fireside room at 9 AM. You can also pre-register your future Olympian by calling 862-2909.
Lookout Pass disproves that old “free lunch” adage when they fire up their Free Ski School Program for skiers age 6 to 17 every Saturday from Jan. 6 through Mar. 10. Beginner classes are at 10 AM, intermediate and advanced classes are at 11:30.
And don’t forget, Mon., Jan. 8, is your last day to submit an entry for Lookout’s Name the Terrain contest. If your entry is chosen to rename the Frontside Terrain Park, you win a season pass. Call 744-1301.
On the weekend of Jan. 5–7, Snowbowl has a full docket. First they host two days of United States Ski Association masters races on Sat., Jan. 6, and Sun., Jan. 7. Also on Sat. and Sun., their Kids Program orientation and registration kicks off with a chance to meet instructors and decide which lessons best suit your young-un during free mini-lessons and skiing on the beginner lifts from 9:30 to 11 AM both days.
At Blacktail ski area, they’ve got gender separation down to a science with Men’s Fridays and Women’s Wednesdays. The eight-week programs begin on Fri., Jan. 5 (Women’s classes began Wed., Jan. 3) and include transportation from the bottom of the hill, a two-hour lesson and lunch. Call 844-0999.
Get to the Glacier Ice Rink at 10 AM on Sat., Jan. 6, for Learn to Skate Classes registration day before Saturday morning classes start on Jan. 20. You’ll save $10 off the $100 fee and skate for free from 10 to 11 AM. Call 543-5889.
If you’ve got a pile of pelts lying around the house and little understanding of how to process them, consider joining Ed Hebbe III for his fur handling workshop on Sun., Jan. 7, at 9 AM at The Potting Bench, 604 Mitchell St. in Deer Lodge. The free all-day class touches on several aspects of the art, and participants should call 846-2304 to register.
The Five Valleys Audubon Society will meet on Mon., Jan. 8, at 7:30 PM in room L14 of UM’s Gallagher Business Building for a bluebird presentation from Jane Brockway, who maintains 59 bluebird nest boxes near Superior. Come learn about the dangers these cerulean songbirds face from lack of nesting sites.
If you’re a sassy senior, or at least an aggro adult, who wants to take part in some local outdoor activity, Missoula Parks and Recreation invites you to attend the first event of their winter program. Their “Explore Missoula” senior-friendly tour begins at the Missoula Senior Center, 705 S. Higgins Ave., at 10 AM on Wed., Jan. 10, and $9 gets you transportation to the Historical Museum at Fort Missoula and lunch upon your return. Call 721-PARK.
The monthly meeting of the Rocky Moun-taineers takes place on Wed., Jan. 10, at 7 PM at Pipestone Mountain-eering, 129 W. Front St. The meeting will be followed by a slide show from Stephen F. Porcella, who will entertain guests with climbing tales from the Bitterroots and 14,000-foot peaks in the Sierra Nevada range.
After getting all amped up at the slide show, those same Rocky Mountaineers get their ice-climbing mojo on for their third annual MLK Ice Climbing trip (was he into bagging gnarly ice crags?) from Jan. 11 through Jan. 15 at either Radium Hot Springs or Lake Louise. The trip is open to climbers of all experience levels, and people interested (read: crazy) enough to scale huge frozen waterfalls and the like should call Jim Cossit at 756-6818.
And once again, dear reader, I leave the remainder of your week’s outdoor recreation up to you. Get out there, bring me back an ice chunk from atop a high frozen place and e-mail it, along with news of your future outdoor events, to: