• A storm and setting sun. Photo by Kayla Sandru

    Top reader photos: First-day-of-summer edition

    It’s that time again: Time to highlight some of the best Reader Photos we’ve gotten in the past weeks.

    This edition brings more than a hint of summer – which is appropriate because today marks the first official day of summer. We’ve got summer skies and summer wildflowers

    Hogeland, MT. Photo by Yvonne Moe Resch

    Hogeland, MT. Photo by Yvonne Moe Resch

    Enjoy! And if you have summer photos from around Montana you’d like to share, email editor@montanamagazine.com.

    Packers Meadow full of wildflowers. Photo by Ken Stolz

    Packers Meadow full of wildflowers. Photo by Ken Stolz

     

    Beargrass near Perma. Photo by Robin K. Ha'o

    Beargrass near Perma. Photo by Robin K. Ha’o

    National Bison Range. Photo by Jeff Nelson

    National Bison Range. Photo by Jeff Nelson

    Thanks to all who shared images. Happy Summer!

    Jenna

  • Glasgow resident Andrew McKean has authored and edited a new book titled “How to Hunt Everything.”  Photo by Max Gauthier

    Montana author pens book about how to hunt everything

    Our friend and contributor Andrew McKean has written a new book – and it’s taken on quite a monolithic topic.

    All things hunting. 

    As Billings Gazette reporter Brett French explains, it’s a big book by true Montana outsdoorsman.

    McKean has been the editor-in-chief of Outdoor Life magazine for five years, the perfect venue for launching such an extensive book. Outdoor Life used to have a publishing arm that churned out a variety of sporting books, and McKean is hoping to revive some of that tradition. Future titles could deal with fishing and cooking.

    In 60 chapters, “How to Hunt Everything” covers traditional North American game animals, like bighorn sheep and elk, to oddities like aardwolves — an insect-eating relative of the African hyena — and the Marco Polo argali sheep of Central Asia. Rather than break the sections of the book down by species or continent, though, McKean decided to tackle the animals by latitude, more befitting of the naturalist approach the book takes into exploring the different species.

    He also wanted the book to be a bit unpredictable, strange and intriguing to keep readers engaged. Chapters include such specifics as suggested firearms and loads, calls, clothing, field judging different animals’ size and even tips on hunting from a boat for Alaskan moose. None of the stories are very long, making for much quicker reading than it would initially appear for the 300-page hardcover book, and a vast array of full-color wildlife, scenic and hunting photographs provide aspirational fodder.

    Andrew McKean

    Andrew McKean

    McKean, who lives in Glasgow, wrote about one generous Montana hunter who donating his menagerie of trophies to the local children’s museum. It’s a truly wonderful Montana story.

    • Read the full story by McLean here

    As for McKean, his new book details personal stories about hunting in some more exotic locations.

    His most difficult and ceremonious hunt was in Germany. Dogs were used to push roe deer through the forest. He was only allowed to shoot a doe, a fact made very clear by the “autocratic leader” of the hunt, but the bucks had already lost their antlers, making it hard to quickly distinguish a buck from a doe. Luckily, McKean was able to fill his tag. Here’s a portion of that story, taking place after he made his shot, as it is recounted in the book: “First, the jaeger who picked me up cut a green twig and placed it in the dead animal’s mouth. This letzer bissen, or last meal, is a formal thanks to the game for giving its life to the hunter. Then the jaeger dipped another twig in the animal’s blood and stuck it in my hatband before delivering a stiff salute: ‘Weidmannsheil!’ The hunter is duty-bound to respond with an equally hearty ‘Weidmannsdank,’ the scripted congratulations and thanks for the hunt.”

    Read French’s full article here.

     

  • national park buses

    TBT: Remember these summertime stories?

    It’s that time of week again: to for a little Throwback Thursday action.

    In honor of the first day of summer on Sunday, we’re pulling up a few of our most popular stories from the summer of 2014.

    Montana State Parks guide by Kristen Inbody and Erin Madison.

    Montana State Parks guide by Kristen Inbody and Erin Madison.

    First, this awesome feature on the 75th anniversary of Montana state parks – which are really great places to play during the summer. There are 54 state parks in Montana.

    Here’s our feature from the May/June 2014 issue. It includes an interactive map so you can see where you might want to go this summer. Need a little more info? Here’s a post about a book all about the parks.

    And we can’t forget Glacier and Yellowstone when we’re talking about summer. Here’s a story on a great way to see both the parks: In vintage cruiser buses. Yellow in Yellowstone and red in Glacier.

    The feature by Ednor Therriault is posted here. And for a list of even more stories about Yellowstone, click here.

    To get our most recent dose of summertime stories, subscribe today!

    Happy summer!

    Jenna

  • The bar at the Montana Brewing Co. Photo by Casey Page

    Montana brewers among the best-of-the-best

    Here’s breaking beer news for your Wednesday afternoon: Montana microbreweries are kicking butt nationwide. 

    Breweries from across Montana won huge awards at the North American Beer Awards in early June. The awards included a gold medal for Montana Brewing Co., out of Billings, in the American lager category.

    “The crowd went wild because all the craft brewers love it,” (Montana Brewing’s Greg) Layman told the Billings Gazette. “The brewers really like it when you beat the megabreweries.”

    Montana breweries were well represented at the national competition and won 31 medals, including 12 gold at the NABA contest.

    “We’ve always had a lot of quality-conscious brewers and a lot of well-educated people bringing a lot of knowledge to Montana,” Layman said.

    KettleHouse Brewing Co. owner Tim O’Leary. Photo by Kurt Wilson

    KettleHouse Brewing Co. owner Tim O’Leary. Photo by Kurt Wilson

    In fact, the 31 medals make Montana the top state per capita in terms of awards, according to the Missoulian.

    KettleHouse Brewing Co. in Missoula won silver in English-style summer ale for Fresh Bongwater, silver in California Common for KettleHouse Kommon and gold for Biere de Garde.

    What’s your favorite Montana beer? Or do you prefer to make your own

    Jenna

  • Madalyn Schovaers, 4, inspects the interior of a teepee erected at the park. Photo by Michael Gallacher

    Learning to camp like Lewis and Clark

    Montana played a huge role in the epic trip Lewis and Clark took across the country, in a quest to explore the unknown frontier and perhaps find an all water route to the Pacific.

    Travelers’ Rest was one point where they stopped and made their mark. The camp is preserved today and open for guided tours. But it’s not usually open for camping.

    • See a slideshow of the campout here

    That changed for on night last week. Here’s the story by the Missoulian’s Dillon Kato:

    LOLO – “We’re mainly here to try to cure the nature deficit disorder,” Angela Miller said.

    While they go on plenty of day trips, Miller said she and her two sons, Aaron and Alex, have only been camping once since their dad passed away, a short trip with another family outside of Sula.

    The Millers were one of more than a dozen families at Travelers’ Rest State Park over the weekend for the annual Corps of Discovery Campout.

    Kathryn Miller, 5, looks on as her older brother Robbie, 7, pounds a tent stake to secure the family home for the night. Photo by Michael Gallacher

    Kathryn Miller, 5, looks on as her older brother Robbie, 7, pounds a tent stake to secure the family home for the night. Photo by Michael Gallacher

    “This is a good way to get out in a controlled, safe environment with some additional support,” Miller said, sitting with her sons on camping chairs in front of their tent. “This is camping training wheels for me.”

    Travelers’ Rest is not usually a campground, and the annual campout weekend is one of the only times of the year that campers are allowed to stay overnight, said Molly Stockdale. Stockdale is the executive director of the Travelers’ Rest Preservation and Heritage Association, the nonprofit partner of the park. The Corps of Discovery Campout is designed as a overnight stay in the park to teach new and novice campers some of the finer points of how to have a successful camping weekend.

    Read the rest of the story here.

    For more Montana all the time, subscribe to Montana Magazine today! 

  • MM_Park2Park 500x500 teaser

    Come with us from Park-to-Park: Glacier to Yellowstone

    All week we’ve been taking you to place we think are some of the best stops on any journey from Yellowstone to Glacier.

    We’ve been to fishing towns and museums, and to places where the scenery will stop you in your tracks.

    • Stop 1: Where buffalo roam (downtown
    • Stop 2: More than a fly fishing Mecca
    • Stop 3: A beautiful place of refuge
    • Stop 4: A brief detour to Going-to-the-Sun
    • Stop 5: Charlie Russell’s home town
    • Stop 6: A huckleberry haven

    In our May/June feature, you can view the entire trip, both our eastern and western routes. There’s more must-stop suggestions too. 

    Enjoy!

    Jenna

  • Hungry Horse. Photo from @MontanaMagazine on Instgram

    Park-to-Park stop No. 6: A huckleberry haven

    This – stop No. 6 in our week-long virtual journey from Park-to-Park – is one of my personal favorites.

    Because who isn’t a sucker for a good milkshake? Especially a huckleberry milkshake?

    And the huckleberry  milkshakes at The Huckleberry Patch in Hungry Horse are divine. The small town just outside the West entrance to Glacier National Park is on our western road route from Park-to-Park.

    Sometimes known as “Huck Town, USA,” Hungry Horse is just outside Glacier’s boundaries and is a must-stop for anyone who loves huckleberries. The Huckleberry Patch on Route 2 in the middle of town offers just about everything huckleberry – including one of the best huckleberry shakes in the area, complete with whole hucks at the bottom of each glass.

    Make sure you check it out next time you’re visiting Glacier.

    And don’t miss the other stops on our tour: 

    • Stop 1: Where buffalo roam (downtown
    • Stop 2: More than a fly fishing Mecca
    • Stop 3: A beautiful place of refuge
    • Stop 4: A brief detour to Going-to-the-Sun
    • Stop 5: Charlie Russell’s home town

    Enjoy!

    Jenna

  • Western Art Week begins March 22 in Great Falls. Courtesy of the Charles M. Russell Museum

    Park-to-Park stop No. 5: Charlie Russell’s hometown

    We’re nearing the end of our week-long virtual Park-to-Park journey – but not to worry. Our final two stops (stayed tuned for Saturday’s No. 6 that is huckleberry-themed!), are a lot of fun.

    Today. we suggest that any journey from Yellowstone to Glacier should include a stop in the hometown of one of the most iconic Western painters of all time.

    • Read our entire Park-to-Park story here

    Charlie Russell called Great Falls home, and now the Electric City is home to the C.M. Russell Museum. It has more than 12,000 permanent collection items and includes Russell’s log cabin and studio.

    Trust me, it won’t disappoint.

    Charles M. Russell's painting "The Exalted Ruler" became part of the C.M. Russell Museum's permanent collection when a statewide campaign bought it from the Elks Lodge in Great Falls. Photo by Tom Bauer

    Charles M. Russell’s painting “The Exalted Ruler” became part of the C.M. Russell Museum’s permanent collection when a statewide campaign bought it from the Elks Lodge in Great Falls. Photo by Tom Bauer

    Included in the museum’s collection are Russell masterpieces such as “Return of the Horse Thieves” (1900), “The Jerk Line” and “The Exalted Ruler” (1912), “The Fireboat” (1918) and “Meat for the Wagons” (1925).

    Don’t be fooled by some of the titles. “Paying the Fiddler” (1916) shows a cattle rustler who’s just been shot. “The Exalted Ruler” shows a dominant bull elk surveying his herd.

    Miss our other stops this week, here’s a breakdown:

    • Stop 1: Where buffalo roam (downtown
    • Stop 2: More than a fly fishing Mecca
    • Stop 3: A beautiful place of refuge
    • Stop 4: A brief detour to Going-to-the-Sun

    Still need more Montana? Subscribe today!

    – Jenna

     

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