Spring 2006

Features

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St. Thomas, Mike
The care of the Earth is our most ancient and most worthy, and after all our most pleasing responsibility. To cherish what remains of it and to foster its renewal is our only hope. —Wendell BerryHow do you define the term sustainability? Perhaps the word conjures images of dreadlocked dirt-diggers... Details
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Becky Edwards
Portrait of a climber.We Montanans are not generally known for our exceptional water polo players. Nor for our contributions to the beach volleyball athlete pool. The Big Sky state tends to produce athletes and adventurers of a different type. With such unique geography and environmental challenges... Details
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Ellen Sagmyr
A spring bike ride in Yellowstone Park.In the height of summer, cycling on any of Yellowstone National Park’s main roads seems to be one of those chance adventures where the cyclist’s survival is arguably a matter of luck. Keeping right, wearing safety equipment, and adhering to safe practices and... Details
Montana Creekboating, Ousel Falls
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Schroeder, David
Creekboating in southwest Montana.The ephemeral blue ice floes yawn and stretch in the brilliant reflection of snow-covered peaks. A steady drip soon becomes a trickle; the water glistens between the precipice and the awakening creek bed below. Released from the tortured motions of winter’s depth,... Details
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various authors
At the dawn of 2005, we asked Outside Bozeman readers to document their most illustrious Suby tales — stories about Subarus and their place as one of Montana’s most honored vehicular residents. We figured it was high time for a celebration of the mighty Subaru and its inimitable accomplishments... Details

Departments

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Keeler, Greg
Intelligent design would be just fineby me if the people who came up with suchideas stripped down and spent as much timeas they could naked. That way we'd see the touchof the creator as he/she intended it. Take buttsfor example. Why cover them up when they'rejust another sign of the divine? I mean... Details
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no one we know
1. Big Hole Valley2. Pierre's Knob3. Bangtail Divide4. Lone Mounting5. Yellowstone Pork6. Gettinwood Canyon7. Cheekhold Hot Springs8. Beehind Basin9. Canyon Fairy10. Gallatin Gayway Details
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Montague, Ada
Here’s a cheap alternative to paying $2.20 a gallon for gas and a chance to avoid in-town traffic all in one go. Get an efficient, sustainably powered, stylin’ sweet ride—also known as a bike. Every year the Gallatin Valley Bike Club organizes the Bozeman Bike Swap, keeping Bozemanites riding on... Details
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Peck, Dave
For the very first time, the Montana Bicycle Racing Association (MBRA) has unveiled a complete summer series. There are nine races in all, beginning in Billings on May 21 and ending in Helena on September 10. The other race sites include Discovery Ski Area, Bohart Ranch in Bozeman, Butte, Showdown... Details
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Montague, Ada
After a hard day outside, when you feel so sore you can barely move or so cold your toes might snap off, just head to one of our nearby hot springs and melt your discomforts away. With everything from primitive springs cascading into rivers to posh resorts built around hot pools, the Bozeman area... Details
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Moseley, Bruce
In Eugene O’Neill’s Pulitzer Prize-winning trilogy, Mourning Becomes Electra, the protagonist’s grief becomes her source of strength. The sorrow shared by family and friends of those who have perished on Montana roads is also, in a way, a source of strength: it develops the resolve to pay creative... Details
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England, Mike
“There is nothing more practical in the end than the preservation of beauty.” —Teddy RooseveltWhen I first heard about Earth Day, celebrated every year on April 22nd, I was ecstatic. Now there was a holiday I could get behind. A day not of archaic religious rituals, arbitrary social customs, or... Details
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Outside Bozeman
26–total personal income, in billions of dollars, of Montana residents in 20043–Montana’s rank (if it were a person) in world’s richest individuals19–percent increase in average purchase price of housing in Montana from 2002-200334–percent increase in Belgrade, 2002-200321–percent increase in... Details
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Stifler, Emily
From my perch on a crumbling, volcanic overlook, I faced a small, grassy basin and a shallow, broad lake. To my right, Palace Butte guarded a cliff edge where Twin Falls tumbled abruptly from the basin into the main Hyalite drainage.Behind me, in separate tents, slept my co-leader and our 14-year-... Details
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Patterson, Amber
If Bozeman gets a little too “big city” for you this spring, or if you’re just looking for a damn good time, think about heading east. May 19-21 is the annual Miles City Bucking Horse Sale and it is guaranteed to entertain. A tradition in Miles City since 1950, the Bucking Horse Sale is a three-day... Details
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Barkas, Vaia
My dog is all nose. Black and quivering, it leads him headlong after any whiff of nonsense. Like the day I came down from Mystic Lake. My dog trotted by the creek, snuffling after squirrels but coming when I called. Around a bend we met two riders on horseback. The sun was warm on my face and I was... Details
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Robinson, Jon
As an orthopedic surgeon here in Bozeman, I have the opportunity to see a variety of patients with a plethora of different problems. Every spring it’s the same old thing. The office fills up with new injuries as the local population puts the skis and boards to bed and takes up spring sports.... Details
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St. Thomas, Mike
In 1993, American climber Greg Mortenson, fresh off a failed attempt at the summit of K2, stumbled into the village of Korphe in the shadow of Pakistan’s Karakoram Range. Despite their impoverished existence, the villagers nursed the malnourished climber back to health, and Mortenson, deeply moved... Details
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Conant, Steve
It seems it’s happened again—the inclement winter weather has reduced the amount that you regularly exercise, and the savory holiday meals followed by decadent desserts have packed your body with some unwanted stuffing. We are still far from the time of year when we can hit the trails or spend... Details
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McCune, John
When matching wines for most dishes, I often look to the sauce or seasoning. Yeah, you can play it safe with the “white with fish and red with meat” routine, but that doesn’t always work, and it’s not always fun either. And fun is what it’s all about, right? Spring is a time for new beginnings, so... Details
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Thielman-Ibes, Kim
I used to think yoga was for sissies, Pilates for the lazy, and Rolf—who the heck is he? As I’ve managed to mature (just a little) through a series of unfortunate mishaps—a torn ACL courtesy of skiing, a strained hamstring (this one compliments of a Bridger Ridge Run training jaunt), and two... Details
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Kuntz, Steve
When the farmers’ markets open in the spring, a bike ride out to Bogert Park or the fairgrounds for some morning air and conversation with friends is a favorite activity. Talented young musicians serenade the crowd with violins. Artists sell everything from paintings and stained glass to soy... Details
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St. Thomas, Mike
To test the legitimacy of Bozeman’s claim as one of the best towns around, we decided to compare it to similar small cities across the country. First up: Burlington, Vermont, home of the University of Vermont and minutes from New England’s premiere ski resorts. Burlington has a long-standing... Details
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Kline, Gary and Jones, Shannon
Many times in the dental office, after patients have answered a page full of questions about their general health and any medications that they are taking, they will ask me why I need all of that information just so they can get their teeth cleaned. Just as medications and any health issues in the... Details
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Garcia, Mike
Lots of rafts are showing up on Montana’s rivers lately, and with good reason. They’re fun, safe, stable, and take you places with friends. With all the choices out there, let’s take a look at what fits for our rivers. Start by asking yourself what you want to do: mostly fish, mostly run whitewater... Details
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Mike St. Thomas
When Big Sky and Bridger reluctantly close in April, have no fear: there’s still one more weekend of fun before area ski bums should start looking for warm-weather jobs. Every year in early to mid-April, Cooke City hosts its annual Sweet Corn Festival. The small mountain town lies four miles from... Details
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St. Thomas, Mike
For the last 35 years, Leo Kottke has been considered one of the most talented and innovative guitarists around. His most recent album, Sixty-Six Steps, recorded with Phish bassist Mike Gordon, explores the calypso rhythms of the Caribbean Islands. Kottke, who once called his singing voice “geese... Details
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Lewis, Jimmy
Perhaps you’ve ventured out during the winter months to favored local rivers when the weather permitted, attempting some deep-water nymphing or looking for elusive midge hatch. Now it is spring, the weather truly has moderated, and you are eager to spend a full day on the water without suffering... Details
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Thielman-Ibes, Kim
My memories of golfing in Montana as a young girl still provide my diehard golfer friends with a grin and a chuckle. The golf course had no fees, no tees, no sand traps, and come to think of it, no greens either, and golf clubs were optional. A hole-in-one meant you bagged a gopher hole. Welcome to... Details
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Dehmer, Kurt
For most outdoors folk, springtime hunting in Montana is reserved for bears, turkeys, and morel mushrooms. However if one really needs another reason to be drawn away from the never-ending list of “Honey-Do’s,” there is always horn hunting. Horn—or more correctly, antler—hunting is the process by... Details
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Chabot, Doug
For most of the winter, warm days and cold nights create hideous, shin-slicing crusts. Yet in the spring these same conditions make dreamy “corn snow.” Deep powder reigns champion on my fun meter, but corn skiing is a close second. In April and May the sun is higher in the sky, bringing warmer and... Details
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Kurt Dehmer
Chasing Montana's largest bird.Early April marks the season-opener in Montana for North America’s largest upland game bird, the Wild Merriam turkey. Although Montana falls well outside the Merriam turkey’s traditional range, introduction efforts in the mid- to-late 1950s have led to the current... Details
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Weber, Jonathan
The old West was built on logging, mining, and ranching, and the New West is being built on tourism, technology, and the “amenity” economy—or so the conventional wisdom goes. Extraction is out, recreation is in, and if we can just stop fighting last year’s environmental wars and get on with it we’... Details
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Bass, Rick
After a long winter in the Montana high country, glacier lilies are among the first color to return that does not crawl or creep or fly. In a sense they do move, though, their bright yellow blossoms flourishing in the bare earth and melting snow that ride ever higher up the mountain, until the last... Details
star map, spring sky, Montana, corona borealis
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Manning, Jim
The crown of the spring sky. Ah, spring—when a young cowboy’s fancy turns to thoughts of, well, calf-roping and branding and the sorts of things that make boy calves sing soprano. And as if to remind the cowpuncher of his springtime lariat work, the sky sports a starry lasso of its own.Use the high... Details
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Moseley, Bruce
So why do you want to watch birds? Or, if you're already a casual observer, what is it that's motivating you to dig more deeply? Perhaps it's a muse—a guiding genius, a source of inspiration—impelling your involvement in a truly joyful pastime.Many bird watchers have found not only inspiration but... Details
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Orem, Tina
I started buying bottled water a few years ago, when I decided to start living by the 64-ounces-a-day rule. At first, the bottles were great. I could put a few in the car, two in my gym bag, and one in the diaper bag. I always had a bottle nearby, and I was finally drinking enough water.Then the... Details
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Gallagher, Liam
Every April folks from around the state gather at the Emerson Cultural Center to celebrate the winter that was. They come dressed in old-school ski garb and quickly fill the historic theater. Short films made by friends and fellow shredders are shown on the big screen, a lot of beer is consumed,... Details
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Lewan, Dick
An ice cream sandwich—I like vanilla.I've eaten my beans,I've eaten my dinner.My hands are sticky,I have no napkin.Could wash them right nowbut that ain't gonna happen.Wipe them on my shirt?It will leave a stain.I like this shirt—I don't want to change.Wipe them on my pants?It'll make them look... Details
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Coble, Melynda
Imitating bears, becoming possessed by their spirit, and sometimes even becoming a bear are all part of Native American Bear Dances. Bear Dances were performed for many reasons: for the Yocuts it was a harvest rite, the Pueblo danced to celebrate the winter solstice, the Delaware renewed the world... Details
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Patterson, Amber
12 Songsby Neil DiamondColumbia RecordsIf you haven’t listened to Neil Diamond in a while, it’s time to give the famous singer/songwriter another chance. Diamond’s new CD, 12 Songs, hearkens back to his early days when his music was more raw and less “Vegas.” Everyone has a mental picture of Neil... Details

Gear Reviews

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Allen, Alex
If you’re looking for a new creek boat, check out the Dagger Nomad. The Nomad comes in two sizes, so it doesn’t matter if you’re a 120-pound chick or a 240-pound dude. The Nomad 8.1 (8’ long, 25.5” wide, 68 gallons, 42 pounds) is great for steep, small-volume creeks, which there is no shortage of... Details
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Rusher, Matt
For many, Riot kayaks are synonymous with expert-only paddlers. But Riot’s designs, as well as their “brash and youthful” image, have matured over the years. With the Astro 54 they’ve found a nice blend of performance, predictability, and forgiveness. Classified as a “River Play” boat, it has a... Details
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Matthews, Jason
When I find gear that is functional and comfortable, I'll use it until it is worn thin, faded, broken, and duct-taped or patched back together. When it's demolished beyond repair, I replace it with the same exact thing. In the past decade I’ve had two HF rescue vests made in Germany. Unfortunately... Details
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Schutz, Jason
Any day you pull on a dry top is a good day. Even if it’s late winter and 30 degrees at the Beartrap put-in—which is where I found myself testing out the new Lotus Designs Royal Flush dry top. Lotus has a reputation for making quality gear, and I soon found out why. Pulling it on over a bunch of... Details
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Grenz, Jonas
Any adventure sport is truly about minimizing the risk, focusing on the task at hand, and proceeding to have the time of your life. Proper gear and knowledge are the best ways to minimize the risk, giving you the peace of mind to concentrate on the task at hand. In the whitewater world, your helmet... Details
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Garcia, Mike
After selling sprayskirts for more than 25 years, you get to know a thing or two about them. First, the Snap Dragon skirts are the best made we've ever found. This might be because the owner of the company still makes the skirts himself to ensure top quality. Most whitewater skirts contain very... Details
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Schroeder, Dave
I’ve paddled the Necky Blunt from its retail inception at Gauley Fest in 1999 to the present day. At 8’2” long with ample rocker and timeless lines, the Blunt is a masterpiece of steep-creek design. No bells or whistles, just proven planing-hull technology. Sure, I’ve been lured away from the rock-... Details

Book Reviews

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Coble, Melynda
The Wilderness Paddler’s Handbookby Alan S. KesselheimRagged Mountain Press, 2001Camden, Maine284 pagesThere is no need to hike naked to a visitor center after your boat is capsized and pinned to a rock midriver. Your friends don’t have to almost die from hypothermia crossing a lake because you... Details

Columns

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Cavan, Josh
As the snow begins to melt and the trees brighten with their spring colors, anglers gear up for some of the best dry fly fishing the season has to offer. The notorious caddis, the small meat-and-potatoes insect of the trout world, begins to hatch. Anglers flock to streams across Montana in hopes of... Details
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Manning, Jim
Ah, spring—when a young cowboy’s fancy turns to thoughts of, well, calf roping and branding and the sorts of things that make boy calves sing soprano in the herd. And as if to remind the cowpuncher of his springtime lariat work, the sky sports a starry lasso of its own.Use the high-flying Big... Details
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Frost, Melissa
Pursuit of a Unique QuarryBeginning on November 15, 2005, thirty-four Montana sportsmen and women got the chance to participate in a unique hunting experience. With the start of Montana’s first bison hunt in 15 years, these hunters admirably pursued their quarry with the whole world watching. Media... Details

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