I was dreaming of bear all week as we backpacked into the Bob Marshall Wilderness, a home to both black bear and grizzly bear. We were constantly reminded of their presence, working along Black Bear Creek Trail, taking pictures of Bear Grass, learning about the Grizzly Bear study in the region we were exploring… But where were they?
We only saw 2 black bears this week, and both times we saw them from inside our car on the Forest Service road. Also from the safety of our car we saw a moose, lots of deer, a group of mountain goats, and a coyote. Out in the woods we saw less intimidating fauna such as mule deer, white tail deer, rat snakes, chipmunks, ground squirrels, marmots, a spotted sandpiper, lots of robins, and more. We also cleared about 60 trees from the trail and backpacked for 16 miles. It was a strenuous and memorable week and we look forward to sharing more stories and lots of pictures over the next few days. Next week we head back to Canada to volunteer with a First Nation community, the Piikani, in southern Alberta.
Hours volunteered: 24 hours (combined) or all week long depending on how you figure it…. we did 12 hours of actual trail work, but were getting to or participating in the project all week long.
States & Provinces: 1, Montana
Budget: UNDER!! After our most expensive week yet, we had probably our least expensive week of the year, since we were away from civilization all week and unable to spend any money.
People Visited: none
Nights under the stars: 6, all in the Flathead National Forest, 5 of which were in the Bob Marshall Wilderness
Best meal: not a meal, but huckleberry milkshakes from Patchy’s Alpine Grill in Hungry Horse definitely deserve a shout out
Best beer: We did not bring any beer into the wilderness, so our only brew this week was a Fat Tire that Jay was given by a generous Forest Service employee when we arrived at the Ranger Station (they were having a potluck)