Wild Life - On the Trail

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Explore the divide for a good cause.

Looking for adventure this summer? The Montana Wilderness Association has something for you.

With opportunities offered for veterans, artists, backcountry chefs and outdoor enthusiasts, you'll have a chance to try something new or expand on your current interests and skills.

The sun slipped behind the western horizons of Montana’s fabled Big Hole Valley, backlighting summits along a vast sweep of Continental Divide.

At the north wall of the valley, a huge black cloud was swallowing the Pintlers, spitting forks of lightning into forest and sagebrush, trailing curtains of rain.

CDT Montana Crew Leader Meg Killen show volunteers how to construct a drain on a section of the Continental Divide Trail in the Centennial Mountains of Southwest Montana. Photo by Michael Dax

While I don’t normally consider myself a selfish person, if someone made that charge against my recreationist persona — the part of me that likes to hike, backpack, fish and bike — then I would have a tough time denying it.

Without a doubt, when it comes to outdoor recreation, I am a taker.

Fist Bumps For All!

The Montana Wilderness Association wants to give you a solid fist bump. You deserve it!

We are celebrating the best year ever on the Continental Divide Trail thanks to hard-working volunteers like YOU. If you volunteered on a CDT Montana project this summer or are interested in learning more about our efforts on the divide, then join us at one of the upcoming events.

2013 Hiker Hoopla Event, Sept 20th, near Marias Pass at Summit Mountain Lodge

Celebrate with volunteers, thru-hikers and CDT enthusiasts on Sept. 20th. Food, drinks, live music and good times provided. Doors open at 5:00 p.m., music starts at 6:00 p.m., BBQ and food at 6:00-700 p.m., raffle prizes at 8:00 p.m., fun all night long!

Sara Meloy, right, leads volunteers on citizen science trips with the Wilderness Institute. Photo by Michael Dax

What is wilderness? For many, wilderness is an abstract idea that means different things to different people. Scholars have filled volumes discussing this very issue, but for the Wilderness Institute, which is associated with the University of Montana and funded by the National Forest Service, wilderness is a quantifiable resource. Every summer for the past eight years, the Wilderness Institute has run a citizen science program that takes volunteers out into a different Montana wilderness area to monitor their wilderness character.