The Beauty of Montana Wilderness
With record snowpacks and an unusual water year, I have had a very lucky summer of wilderness runs. The latest I got to check off my list was the Upper Middle Fork of the Flathead River in mighty Montana.
This trip includes the added bonus of an awesome flight over the Flathead Valley and through the Great Bear Wilderness. Since we were flying into a small grass airstrip we had to take tiny planes, Cessna 206s, that only fit two people with kayaks. Being in the first plane of three meant that I departed at 6:00am and arrived to frost on the ground and temperatures in the thirties. Lucky for us there were friendly folks at the Schafer Meadow Ranger Station that invited us in to share their fire and a cup of coffee.
A short hike brought us to the put-in, a small, clear mountain creek. The next three days on the river consisted of beautiful scenery, trees that seem to go on forever, clear water, and fun rapids. Waterfalls trickled in along the banks and hints of wildlife were all around.
I have been loving my Medium Solo for self-support trips. It fits everything I need for a couple days and feels great in the water. In fact, I have been raving about it so much that my friend Rachel Crowder decided to give it a go with my old boat. She agreed.
The last day includes the Spruce Park Series, a short mini gorge with fun rapids.
This run ranks high on my list of favorites. I can't wait to go back!! Up next....the Selway River!!