Mountain High 

State borders are mystical things. Picture it: you've got one foot in Idaho and the other in Montana, and you're wearing track shorts because you're a champ! You're about to run the Mountain-to-Meadow Half Marathon or 5K FunRun in Lolo Pass. You're running on either Mountain or Pacific time, and the crisp morning air is brisk on your bare legs, because remember, I've dressed you in track shorts. You really should have packed sweats, but never mind that.

The big race this Saturday will take you through a mix of dirt and gravel roads, through Packer Meadows, past the historical site where Lewis and Clark stopped to camp in 1805, and among the purple camas flowers. You tingle with historical significance. You are so thirsty and accomplished, and I couldn't be more proud of your dogged determination and appreciation for the finer things in life.

The 2011 Mountain-to-Meadow Half Marathon and 5k FunRun takes off from Lolo Pass Visitor Center Saturday at 8:30 AM Mountain time. Register for $25 and get maps and other details at runlolopass.org, or call 240-0287.

click to enlarge CHAD HARDER

THURSDAY JUNE 23

Your mission, if you choose to accept it: Rock Climbing and Rappelling with City Life community Center at The Heap at Lolo Pass. It's technical. You'll be harnessed and belayed, ages 13-18, $15 for members only, 7:30 AM–6 PM, Register at 1515 Fairview Ave. or citylifemt.com. Call 532-1558.

SATURDAY JUNE 25

Who's afraid of big bad rapids? Spend a full day running the river on the Blackfoot River Rafting Trip, $60. Registration required with UM Outdoor Program, 243-5172 or email campusrec@mso.umt.edu.

The Sierra Club invites flower and mountain fans to Hike the Fred Burr Reservoir with them, a 9-mile expedition with an elevation gain of 1,000 feet. To sign up and get other details, contact Mary Owens at mowens320@gmail.com. Free and open to the public.

Make a non fast food related run for the border at the Fourth Annual Mountain-to-Meadow Half Marathon and 5k Fun Run, which begins at the Lolo Pass Visitor Center, 44000 Hwy 12 West, 43 miles west of Missoula. Register online at runlolopass.org or call 240-0287.

Turn your legs into jelly during the Ride Around The Pioneers In One Day (RATPOD), a one-day, 130-mile bicycle ride that begins in Dillon and takes you through three wilderness mountain ranges around the Big Hole Valley. This also doubles as a benefit for Camp-Mak-A-Dream. Pre-registration is required, and it's limited to the first 650 riders, so visit ratpod.org for the lowdown or call 549-5987.

Pound the dirt on a single track trail that includes alpine and sub-alpine terrain—plus over 11,000 feet of elevation gain—during the Old Gabe 25k and 50k, which takes place in the Bridger Mountain range near Bozeman. Dash to www.math.montana.edu/~thayes /Runs/Runs.html for details.

SUNDAY JUNE 26

Who's afraid of big bad rapids? Spend a full day running the river on the Blackfoot River Rafting Trip, $60. Registration required with UM Outdoor Program, 243-5172 or email campusrec@mso.umt.edu.

The early human catches the bird when you join Flathead Audubon for A Tour of the Mission Valley beginning at 6 AM for early summer bird watching. Birders will visit the national bison range and see some warblers, vireos, sparrows and more. Meet at the Park n' Ride at the intersection of US Highway 93 and Montana Hwy 82 near Somers. Call Leslie at 837-4467.

WEDNESDAY JUNE 29

Who's afraid of big bad rapids? Spend a full day running the river on the Blackfoot River Rafting Trip, $60. Registration required with UM Outdoor Program, 243-5172 or email campusrec@mso.umt.edu.

In my experience, teens love salmon, lakes and hotdogs, so why not send yours to a day of fun at Salmon Lake with City Life Community Center, with activities like a fire roast, tubing, water skiing (brisk!) and more, ages 13–18 only, 7:30 AM to 7 PM, $40/$30 for members. Register at citylifemt.com or call 532-1558.

THURSDAY JUNE 30

Not unlike the popular children's game Chutes & Ladders, Biking the Hiawatha Trail with City Life Community Center promises 15 miles of snakey terrain, beginning at scenic Lookout Pass, for ages 13–18 only, 7:30 AM to 5 PM. $35/$40 non-members. Register at citylifemt.com or call 532-1558.

Send your little one tiptoeing through tulips for the miniNaturalists at the Gardens program, which lets kids explore the natural world through hands-on activities and play, 10–11 AM at Fort Missoula Native Plant Gardens (under the big silver water tower). $3/$1 MNHC members. montananaturalist.org.

See a part of history in the making at the special induction ceremony of the National Senior Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame Exhibit, Dance and Barbecue. The Hall of Fame induction ceremony goes from 3–6 PM, with the barbecue and street dance to follow at 6 PM, all at the Ravalli County Museum, 205 Bedford St. in Hamilton. Call 363-3338.

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