Sunday, October 30, 2016

Glacial Lake Missoula - A Living Geology Education!

Glacial Lake Missoula by artist, Byron Pickering

Western Montana is such an odyssey for learning about so many things, especially the natural environment. Over 12,000 years ago, during the last Ice Age, the glacial movement from the North created the mountains & brought with it great flooding. All the area was 2,000 feet under water. 
A great place to see the geological formations & strand lines is at the National Bison Range & Camas Prairie. The Bison Range very top point was above the water, but most of the Bison Range was under water. 
Ice Age Lake Missoula was a forbidding scene. The water was dark, deep & murky. There is no evidence of fish & other aquatic life forms. Geologists surmise that the sediment was ground down to a "rock flour" powder by the glacial action. Although mastodons,  mammoths & bison roamed the nearby areas, there is no direct evidence of humans beings.
At the National Bison Range, the bison wallow in the "rock flour" powder to relieve the bugs, their bites & heat. Come see us at Bear Spirit Lodge next summer & enjoy the spectacular, unspoiled nature!

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Mission Mountains of Montana - A Last Great Place!

     Mission Falls near Bear Spirit Lodge B&B

The Mission Mountains Tribal Wilderness area is so vast & beautiful.
It covers almost 92,000 acres.
From the foothills around 4,000 feet to 10,000 high peaks, there is plenty to explore in these beautiful  mountains. Avid hikers have been to the tallest peak, McDonald Peak, which is almost 10,000 ft high. 
A popular hiking spot near Bear Spirit Lodge B&B is Mission Dam Reservoir 
& the lower Mission Falls. 
A pretty flat hike from the Reservoir to the Lower Falls is about 2 miles. You can also drive slowly on a 1-lane rocky road to the base of the Mission Falls. You need a high riding car or truck to drive this lane. 
For those of you hardier hikes, you can go up about another 3-4 miles to Elizabeth Falls via a rough trail which is not groomed. It can be a little treacherous in spots, so it is advisable to be with a hiking buddy, & carry bear spray & drinking water. 
Lucifer Lake is at the top of the Falls & beautiful, clear & blue.

Come to Bear Spirit Lodge B&B, & have some mini-hiking days around the area.

A Tribal Recreation Permit is required, & can be purchased locally for $14 per year or less for a 3-day permit.


Sunday, July 31, 2016

    Great Horned Owls near Bear Spirit Lodge B&B


"A wise old owl lived in an oak 
The more he saw, the less he spoke 
The less he spoke, the more he heard 
Why can't we all be like that wise old bird?"

The Great Horned Owls are abundant in the Mission Valley. They sit on high poles focusing on catching some food. They like to "sing" & even more fun is to sing a "hoot,hoot" to them & hear them answer back.

They do fly stealthily & are so silent when they fly. They are looking for voles, mice, feral cats, or pet cats, & lots of small critters. Their wing span can be 3-5' across & quite magnificent. 
Come to Bear Spirit Lodge B&B & go bird sighting with us!


Wednesday, June 29, 2016

July in Montana is the BEST!

The Arlee Celebration (Pow Wow) July 1-4th
  The 118th Arlee Celebration brings together tribes from all over the USA & Canada to celebrate their culture & history. The ceremonial tribal dress & beading is especially a sight to behold - full of colors & exquisite art. 
It is fun to see the dance competitions, the general all tribal (including non-tribal) dances, & the Snake Dance on July 4th. You can also buy jewelry & artifacts, clothing, T-shirts, blankets in all price ranges. The food is delicious, especially the Indian tacos & fry bread.
Come stay at Bear Spirit Lodge only 25 minutes from the Arlee Pow Wow!

Monday, May 30, 2016

Springtime Animal Babies in Western Montana near Bear Spirit Lodge

The National Bison Range is abundant with Bison Babies!

So many cute Bison Babies with their Mama Bison at the National Bison Range. Only 20 minutes from Bear Spirit Lodge, the Bison Range is splendid in green after a lot of spring rains. 
Pronghorn females are having their babies & hiding them in the tall grasses to protect them from the coyotes.
Birds are laying eggs & some have hatched. The Trumpeter Swan couple has returned to nesting at the Bison Range, & appear to have moved their nest into a more private place away from people. Last year, 3 swans were born, but only 2 survived. Such cute little fluff balls!
Horses around the area have given birth to beautiful little colts, too.
Come to Bear Spirit Lodge & enjoy the spring green & the spectacular, unspoiled nature everywhere you look!


Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Mission Mountains, Waterfalls & Lucifer Lake
 &  Bear Spirit Lodge B&B

Spectacular, Unspoiled Nature! 

All around Bear Spirit Lodge, mountains & forests & beautiful views every season of the year. For those who like steep, craggy hikes, the hike to Elizabeth Falls (upper) & Lucifer Lake are for the strong in body, courage & spirit. (I took this picture on a helicopter ride over the top to view the Bob Marshall Wilderness).

The Mission Mountains Tribal Wilderness covers nearly 92,000 acres. It is located on the western slopes of the Mission Mountain Range. From an elevation of 4,000 feet to over 10,000 feet at the mountain peaks, these sharp peaks offer great views & photo opportunities from down below. 

The roadless areas & very rough trails are generally more accessible between July 1 & October 1. There is usually some snow on the ground in the higher elevations year round.The area is probably best known for the Elizabeth & Mission Falls with a dramatic 1,000 foot drop from Elizabeth to Mission Falls. Hikers frequently scale the trail to the Mission Falls, & some even go up the rudimentary trail to Elizabeth Falls. 

    Since the Tribal Wilderness is on the Salish Kootenai Indian Reservation land, non-tribal visitors can get a yearly recreational permit for $14 per year or a 3-day permit for $10. It is well worth it! 

    Come see us this summer at Bear Spirit Lodge B&B, & have a "Wild Experience" in Nature!
         



Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Mission Mountains of Montana, Home of Bear Spirit Lodge B&B

The Mission Mountains view from lane to Bear Spirit Lodge
We are located only 5 miles on St. Mary's Lake Rd. from MT Highway 93  & then 1/2 mile on a hard-packed gravel road into the forests. Come enjoy nature & hospitality at its finest!
The Mission Mountains are a part of the Rocky Mountains Range in Northwest Montana. Nearly 74,000 acres of beautiful waterfalls, lakes, hiking trails, and full of wildlife & birds.
The greatest time to hike is from the first of July through October. Some of it is Confederated Salish Kootenai Tribal wilderness land, so non-tribal hikers can purchase a tribal permit for around $15 for an annual permit. The areas of the Mission Mountains, the Flathead River, Mission Dam Reservoir, Elizabeth & Mission Falls are among the great places to hike & picnic.
The mountains are full of flora and fauna. Lots of white tail deer and mule deer, elk, mountain goats, black bears, grizzly bears, mountain lions, bobcats and lynx are live in the great nature habitat. Smaller animals include marmots, rabbits, squirrels, weasels, and various small animal. Redtail & ferruginous hawks, great horned owls, and bald eagles are frequently seen in the trees and flying overhead. 
For a great taste of the Wild Western outdoors, beautiful nature, terrific photo opportunities, and just plain relaxing, come to Bear Spirit Lodge B&B in the Mission Mountains soon!