• A summer virga over the Little Belt Mountains and Middle Fork Judith River WSA.

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Photo by Patrick Colleran
Elena Ulev and Seth Barnes with their daughters Lucy (l) and Ella (r)

Elena Ulev and Seth Barnes with their daughters Lucy (l) and Ella (r)

My family in Chicago thinks I’m a weirdo. Not only did I choose to live in one of the least populated states in the U.S. but I love to do strange things like hike, camp and ski. And I’m teaching my kids to do the same things.

Frank, Honeybunch, and Benny along the Rocky Mountain Front.

Frank, Honeybunch, and Benny along the Rocky Mountain Front.

It was one cold winter evening last December that I met Frank Vitale. We visited over a crackling fire and ate a delicious meal cooked by his wife, Ellen Horowitz. I quickly learned Frank is a farrier, a stockman, a historian and storyteller, a lover of the open-spaces of the Front Range, a pragmatist, and a passionate wilderness advocate.

MWA members and Dropstone Outfitting owners Maggie Carr and Yve Bardwell. MWA photo

MWA members and Dropstone Outfitting owners Maggie Carr and Yve Bardwell. MWA photo

This past January, Yve Bardwell and Maggie Carr finalized the purchase of High Country Adventures, an outfitting business that has specialized in guided, foot-travel trips on the Rocky Mountain Front for over 30 years. The two young women have renamed the business Dropstone Outfitting, LLC. The proud new owners were kind enough to sit down this spring and answer a few questions about the business, the wilderness and their community.