• John Bozeman’s unhappy ending

    John Bozeman. Photo from the Montana Historical Society

    John Bozeman. Photo from the Montana Historical Society

    For our final 150th Montana Territory anniversary post here’s a little bit about John Bozeman . Yep. That Bozeman. Along he had a town named after him, turns out, he wasn’t in Montana too long:

    From Jesse Zentz:

    John Bozeman only lasted in Montana for five years, but this “character” played an important role in Montana’s early territorial days. He arrived in Montana in 1862 and died in 1867. It remains unclear whether he was killed by Blackfeet Indians or partner Tom Cover. Before his death, he helped plan the Bozeman Trail – a route from the Oregon Trail to Bannack – and he founded the city named after him in August of 1864.

    “He’s a son of Georgia. He’s clearly in flight from an unhappy marriage and an unhappy life down south. He’s in flight from the Civil War. He seems to be very good at promoting himself and he’s very good at finding schemes to pursue. In the end, he does not have a happy ending. He ends up getting shot in 1867 and one can only guess what happened there, but he may have been partly responsible. I’ll leave it at that,” said Ken Egan, executive director of Humanities Montana. 

    Just because we’re done celebrating, doesn’t mean there’s not more to see. First, check out this 365-day historical facts project from the Missoulian. Also, if you want to take part in an “official” celebration, the 41st Annual Montana History Conference, presented by the Montana Historical Society, will take place Sept. 18-20 in Helena and focus on Montana Milestones as in commemorates 150 years of Montana arriving on the map. For more information, visit www.mhs.mt.gov/education/ConferencesWorkshops.asp.

    - Jenna 

  • Bozeman native, pro cyclist shares favorite MT road ride

    The first rides Tejay van Garderen took on the road to becoming one of the top cyclists in the world were in and around Bozeman. It was on those roads that his parents noticed he a had particular grit that would eventually propel him into a top position in American cycling.

    Tejay is featured in the Jan/Feb issue of Montana Magazine in a story by Jesse Zentz. After many success, this year Tejay is focused on winning a few key races, and as Zentz explains, is considered a top American contender to win the Tour de France in the coming years.

    But if Tejay could ride anywhere in Montana, where would it be?

    He told us it’s the 75 mile Battle Bridge Road ride that takes riders from Bozeman’s Main Street almost to Wilsall.

    Here’s the official route for the Battle Ridge Road ride

    Distance: 75 miles

    Elevation gain: 3,373 feet based on MapMyRide.com

    Start: Bozeman (intersection of Main Street and Rouse Avenue)

    Turnaround: Near Wilsall (intersection of Bridger Canyon Road and Highway 89)

    Route: Follow Rouse Avenue north for about 1 mile, when it turns into Bridger Canyon Road. Continue on Bridger Canyon road for about 36 more miles until it ends at the intersection of Highway 89. Turn around and do it all over in the opposite direction.

     Van Garderen: “I really liked the Battle Ridge climb outside of Bozeman near Bridger Bowl. That was probably the hardest climb. To me, thinking about it now, it was like Alp d’Huez or something. But I’m sure if I went back, it might be a bit easier that I remember. That was a long tide and it was pretty country and a really hard climb. I don’t know how long it was in terms of miles, but it would usually take me about four hours to go over it, to go down and back up the other side and back home. Like I said, it was a long time ago (likely 2003) and it might be a two-and-a-half-hour ride these days.”

    Here’s a link a map of the ride: www.mapmyride.com/routes/view/328715611

    Thanks Tejay for sharing this ride!

    Jenna