News » Opinion

Mountain High


I'm certainly not fit enough to compete in a triathlon, but maybe you are. Maybe, just maybe, you can canoe or kayak for three miles, then jump on your mountain bike to cycle it up for five miles, and then top off the whole excursion with a four mile trail run without collapsing from exhaustion. If that sounds like cake—or you're just a glutton for some bodily punishment—you can head north on Sun., Aug. 1, for the fourth annual Foy's to Herron Paddlethon Race, which features the aforementioned activities and begins at 7:30 AM, with registration at the Foy's Lake parking lot, off Foy's Lake Road near Kalispell. The race follows at 9 AM, beginning with the canoe/kayak competition. $40 teams of three/$28 teams of two/$15 per person. Visit for info and directions, and call Steve at 261-9250.

Of course, that's just on Sunday, so let's moonwalk back a few days. On Fri., July 30, those in the Flathead can attack noxious weeds like a kung fu master when Glacier National Park's Citizen Science program presents a "Noxious Weed Blitz" from 10 AM–4 PM, starting at the West Glacier Community Building. Free. The blitz includes training on weed ID and mapping, and moves into pulling the buggers shortly thereafter. A free, non-noxious lunch is also included, along with a weed field guide. Call 888-7986 to RSVP.

Any and all ladies who want to get adventurous with their rucksack—aka their backpack—should contact the Montana Natural History Center (MNHC) on Fri., July 30, in order to sign-up for the MNHC's Women's Intro to Backpacking Discovery Weekend, which covers things like how to set up camp, use a cook stove, and "leave no trace," and runs Aug. 6–8 at Lost Lake in the Great Burn Wilderness. $65/$55 members, with registration due July 30. Call 327-0405 to register and visit


Or you could sign-up to get intimate with the "Eskimo roll" during the UM Outdoor Program's Kayak Roll Clinic, which occurs at 8:30 PM on Aug. 3 and 5 at UM's Grizzly Pool. You must sign up by Fri., July 30, for the course, which costs $45. Also, participants need some kayaking experience, so newbies will just have to stay put. Call 243-5172 to register.

Later that day, hit the road in order to climb a peak with some boulder-ascending junkies when Julie Kahl of The Rocky Mountaineers leads a hiking trip to Hyalite Peak near Bozeman, which begins with departure Fri., July 30, at a TBA time. Free. The plan is to camp at the trailhead on Friday night, be on the trail by 7 AM on Sat., and then head back to Missoula on Sunday. Call Julie at 543-6508 to finalize plans and visit

You thankfully don't have to rub yourself down with fish oil in order to hang with the Montana Chapter of the Sierra Club, which leads the Fish Lake Day Hike in the Bitterroot Mountains on Sat., July 31, at a TBA time and meeting location. Once your boots hit the dirt, expect an eight-mile round-trip hike to the stunning lake, which is surrounded by soaring peaks. Free, but the hike is limited to 15 people, and you must RSVP by contacting Mary at

Run like the "Barefoot Bandit" without committing a crime on Sat., July 31, during the 30th annual Mission Mountain Classic Run, a 5k race/walk and 1-mile fun run that begins with late registration at 7 AM and 7:45 AM at the Community Bank Ronan parking lot, 123 Hwy. 93 in Ronan. $27/free for the fun run. The 5k race/walk kicks off at 8 AM, while the fun run gets fun at 8:45 AM. Call Gale at 676-3033 and visit to download a registration form.

You could also give the Blackfoot River some much needed lovin' on Sat., July 31, during the seventh annual Blackfoot River Cleanup, where you join walkers, boaters, waders and divers in order to clean trash that people have carelessly left in the river or on its shores. Boaters and scuba divers should meet at 8 AM at 3898 Rainbow Bend Drive, between mile markers 8 and 9 on Hwy. 200, and all others should meet at that spot at 9 AM. Free to participate, with a free barbecue following the cleanup. Call 244-5442.

Get your feet moving for women who feed their babies naturally during The Bitterroot Baby Run and Stroller Stampede, a fundraiser for the Bitteroot Breastfeeding Coalition on Sat., July 31, that features a 5k run/walk at 9 AM, followed by a 1-mile "Stroller Stampede" fun-run at 10:30 AM, all at the South Valley Child and Family Center, 515 Madison St. in Hamilton. $20 for the 5k/$5 for the fun run. Call Mary at 880-2551 and visit for a registration form.

Kids aged 11 and older learn the finer points of shooting at moving targets during another round of Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks' Hunter Education courses, which occur in Darby and Corvallis on Aug. 9 and Aug. 16, respectively. Visit to register and for further details, and take note that a mandatory orientation for the class in Darby is set for Mon., Aug. 2, at 6 PM at the cafeteria of Darby Elementary School, 209 School Drive. Call 542-5500.

I'll leave you with a friendly but urgent reminder to register ASAP for the Montana Wilderness Association/Selway-Bitterroot Foundation trails project in the Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness, which occurs Aug. 8–14 at the Boulder Creek Canyon Trail, at the base of Trapper Peak. You'll join eight to 10 other people for this project, which consists of making trails spiffy and keeping campsites looking tight. The trip is expected to cost no more than $75, with a $50 deposit to reserve a space. Call Liz at 734-755-8734 to RSVP, or e-mail her at

And now, in the immortal words of Salt-N-Pepa, I urge you to go "push it–push it real good."

Add a comment