Fall 2015

Features

  • Flesh and Blood

    The more things change, the more they stay the same. The leading edge of the storm had just breached the peaks to the west as Matt left the ranch for town, erasing first the stars and then the full moon and finally the…
  • Distinguish the Day

    A notable Spanish Peaks traverse.Maybe it was the dread of the approaching winter that excited my ambitious side, or perhaps I needed a worth culmination to a long summer of running. All I know is that one October day, I…
  • A Rift Runs Through It

    Fighting for access to the Ruby River. Seyler Lane isn’t much of a road. It isn’t even much of a lane, and chances are most of us never would have heard of it except for three accidents of geography. First, Seyler Lane is…

Departments

  • Glamping vs. Camping

    Glamping, if you’re unfamiliar, Frankensteins the words “glamour” and “camping,” and attracts urban types who want to experience the outdoors without roughing it. Tents, tipis, yurts, and treehouses are outfitted with Ritz…
  • Cliff Casters

    Take your fishing to the next level — literally. Fishing with flies has been exhaustively—exhaustingly, at times—described by some of the finest wordsmiths, poets, musicians, and barroom bros since a bunch of masochistic…
  • On the Move

    Raptor migration along the Bridger ridge.The much-anticipated autumn raptor migration is fast approaching. From early September to late October, more than a dozen species will pass through the region, and one of the best…
  • Tips For Success

    Hunting grounds are hallowed places, viewed with great anticipation and anxiety over the bragging, freezer-filling, story-gathering process each fall. But to be sure your time there doesn’t turn to pure anguish, here are…
  • Outlook

    Fall 2015. Slowly, without a sound, smoke wreathes and curlsRound a cold length of wild wind, blasting through the canyon;Autumn clings to the mist that stretches out of sleepy riverbendsAnd whispers weighty words through…
  • A Fatter Forest

    New options for wide-tired riders.Over-snow bikers (aka, “fat-bikers”) and UTV (utility vehicle) enthusiasts have reason to rejoice, thanks to the Custer Gallatin National Forest’s recent revisions to the Gallatin Forest…
  • Following the White Rabbit

    Montana's hue-changing hare. Sprinting at more than 20 miles per hour, a snowshoe hare bursts into a meadow at Yellowstone’s northeast entrance, flushed by a pair of coyotes. The hare changes direction several times, and…
  • The Last Hunt

    Time waits for no dog. As I think back to hunting seasons gone by, of favorite dogs and skies black with birds, I can’t help but wonder what it is that drives us and our dogs to do things that seem both crazy and funny at…
  • The Celestial Outhouse

    Fall's starry sky. The storied Western homestead, out on the windswept prairie or tucked into a rocky canyon, might variously have corrals, barns, or sheds clustered about the ranch house. But the one outbuilding—always “…
  • Outdoor Entrepreneurs

    Homegrown businesses flourish. To the uninitiated, fall hunting conjures images of golden aspen, bulging elk, and snowcapped peaks. But we Montanans know better. The reality is sitting in cold sleet, bushwacking through…
  • Ready, Set, Ski

    Getting ready for a BSF winter. In a mountain town, loving winter and skiing comes easily, and nowhere is that more apparent than in the faces of the 500-plus youth and adults who enjoy Nordic, freestyle, and alpine skiing…
  • Release the Hounds

    Snare & trap tips.Every year, Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks receives a number of requests to hold workshops on releasing pets from traps. Many hikers, snowshoers, and cross-country skiers are concerned about their…
  • Review: Time-Tested Gear

    Gear that needs no alteration. While much of the gear we use these days would be unrecognizable to our outdoor ancestors, some stuff—often the best stuff—remains largely unchanged. These are the items your grandfather…
  • Work Now, Ski Later

    Do CrossFit for a better season. Like many Bozemanites, I began CrossFit to get in shape for the upcoming ski season. The winter before, as a volunteer ski patrol at Big Sky, I found myself transporting a heavy guy down the…
  • Open Book

    Paradise Valley's geologic story. The Earth is estimated to be 4.56 billion years old, so what we see in our short lifetimes is a mere blip in geological time. Fortunately, Montana's majestic mountains, valleys, and lakes…
  • Resignation

    Atop the ridge I sit and overlook The valley floor. Amidst the sprawling fields Of green and yellow grass, among the groves Of spruce and Douglas fir, within the bounds Of earthen mounds that reach toward the sky, There…
  • Pony Up

    Fall's featured mountain-bike ride. The Tobacco Root Mountains have a lot to offer mountain bikers, but most of us head right to the Curly Highline epic. The “Pony Loop,” however, is a lot closer, and has a classic Montana…
  • Land o' Lakes

    The Madison Valley's watery offerings. There’s something about the twilight season that repels an angler from the river’s unceasing roll. Lakes lend themselves to fall fishing in ways that rivers can’t. Stillwaters tend to…
  • This Is My Rifle

    There are many like it, but this one is (still) mine. There comes a time in every relationship when one must decide whether to stay or go: to resign oneself to a partner’s shortcomings, or seek out a new one. Countless…
  • Killer Kitties

    Barn cats on patrol. So, you’ve got a nice piece of land and maybe a few horses. You enjoy the rural lifestyle, except for one thing: mice. Laying traps everywhere is a pain and as for poisons, well, they don’t just destroy…
  • Heavy Hybrid

    Tying the Frenchy's Fall Fathead. The Frenchy’s Fall Fathead is a cross between a handful of traditional streamers, such as the Bow River Bugger and JJ Special. It’s a great pattern for the fall that’s heavily weighted and…
  • Horseback Heroes

    Using wilderness to help veterans. “When riding a horse, we leave our fear, troubles, and sadness behind on the ground.” —Juli CarlsonIt was more than an hour after I first shook Micah Fink’s powerful hand that I got a word…
  • Just Like That

    Bozeman's time of transition. Things do not change; we change. —Henry David ThoreauLast November, I shot a thick-shouldered mule deer buck just before the first snow of autumn barreled into the valley. It was a perfect fall…
  • Heads-Up Hunting

    It’s fall, which means whether you hunt or not, people will be in the woods with guns. While most Montana hunters are well-versed in ethics, safety, and protocol, a refresher never hurts. Non-hunters: you can take extra…
  • Omens and Signs

    I have an old-school, classic creelso worn I have replaced straps.I keep it in shapewith that elixir of ancient leather,Neatsfoot.Should use some on myself.Always fish with my basket,keep an occasional fish to fillet,take…
  • Proven Gilty

    Hiking Golden Trout Lakes. Before the snows of winter envelop the high country, take an opportunity to explore the best of the Gallatin Range, Golden Trout Lakes. Instead of hiking to Lava or Storm Castle like you always do…
  • Salt-Crusted Trout

    A tasty fall recipe. Sometimes, to get to the good stuff, you gotta break through a few barriers. Last Thanksgiving, my sister and I had to crack our way through an ice shelf to get at the water holding these gorgeous…
  • Cast & Blast

    Mastering the fall multi-sport.  It’s not often in this busy, modern world that a person can combine, and truly experience, two passions at once. But every autumn we get that chance, in a sporting overdose known as the “…
  • Ride the Divide

    Biking the CDT. The mountains outside of West Yellowstone contain some of the most scenic and enjoyable sections of the legendary Continental Divide Trail. From extremely technical rocky switchbacks to smooth rolling…
  • Champs & Chumps – Fall 2015

    Hunting is important to the Montana way of life, but its controversial nature leaves a dark cloud hanging over it. Often, poachers and hunters are lumped into the same category—wanton killers—by non-hunters. A more unfair…
  • Overkill

    A criticism of fisheries management. Yellowstone National Park is under assault. Or more correctly, several of its creeks, rivers, and lakes are. In accordance with the 2011 Native Fish Conservation Plan, several of the…
  • Saving Sage Grouse

    Conserving Montana's largest game bird. Stamping my feet on the frozen ground, I waited impatiently for an elusive football-sized bird to appear in the murky pre-dawn light. A spotting scope stood at the ready, my tool to…
  • Posted: Please Trespass

    Reclaiming the right to roam. America is often called the “Land of the Free,” yet we’re not free. Citizens aren’t confined, but rather restricted by an endless barrage of “No Trespassing” and “Keep Out” signs across the…
  • Public Pursuit

    An interview with Randy Newberg.Bozeman-based Randy Newberg is a hunter, TV personality, and strong advocate of do-it-yourself hunts on public lands, something most O/B readers can relate to. In this interview, Randy…
  • The Angle of English

    Following the story of a word. In 1496, an English nun and author named Dame Juliana Berners wrote and published A Treatyse of Fysshynge wyth an Angle, a comprehensive guidebook for 15th-century sportfishers. Various…
  • Review: Game-Saver

    Ready your rig for a Montana safari. Wildlife abounds around Bozeman, and a dedicated hunter can day-trip to his heart’s content, exploring incredible country and taking all manner of game. At least once a season, though,…

Gear Reviews

  • Review: Rapid Rifle Cover

    The elk were above me, necessitating a three-mile climb through a new growth of thick, 15-foot-tall lodgepoles. The wind hadn’t blown since the last snowfall, so each tree was loaded with snow, just waiting to avalanche…
  • Review: Kahtoola NanoSpikes

    Fall trail running can be as unpredictable as a night at the craps table in Vegas. You might encounter ice, mud, snow, or if you’re lucky, a dry trail. You can ask other runners through various forums about trail conditions…
  • Review: MSR Windburner

    Though you can get calories from jerky or trail mix, a piping hot soup or sweet and filling oatmeal can be the difference between misery and joy (not to mention hot coffee or tea) when backpacking. Space in your pack is…
  • Review: Arborwear Ascender

    Maybe it’s just me, but good hunting pants seem more elusive than a seven-point bull on opening day. They’re always too tight, or too loose and floppy, or too much cotton, or they fall apart after a single season. So…
  • Review: Kenetrek Hunting Gaiter

    Wet feet are the worst, especially when you’re halfway up a mountain with miles of trail and hours of daylight ahead. Luckily, a good pair of gaiters can save a whole lot of suffering—and I’ve found no better calf-and-ankle…
  • Review: Redington Topo Outfit

    Fly fishing takes a lot of gear, and getting your first rig can be overwhelming. Not so with the Topo Outfit from Redington. The combo setup includes line, tapered leader, tippet, six essential flies, a starter fly box, and…

Additional Articles

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