Mountain High 

And this is how we launch into the prologue-free Mountain High (there being way too much stuff to do this week to waste space moaning on about appliances):

First of all, don’t forget the DeBorgia Forest Restoration Workshop, crystal-balled here last week, on Friday, Oct. 20. It’s being put on by the National Network of Forest Practioners and the WildWest Institute, which can tell you more at 542-7342.

The next day, the Rocky Mountaineers are getting out of the recreational gate first with a Saturday, Oct. 21, climb to the Bitterroots’ 8,500’ North Canyon Peak. Organizer Steve Niday, who reminds you that he reserves the right “to change the destination or cancel, due to conditions, mine or the mountains,” describes the route as an 11-mile round-trip without any particularly technical difficulties. Call him at 721-3790 if you want to spend the day climbing.

Or, you could go back up into the mountains again. That’s what the New Rocky Mountaineers are doing, and their destination is 10,157’ Trapper Peak, tallest in the Bitterroots. Expect wind and maybe a little snow, or call Gerald Olbu at 549-4769 for a more up-to-date forecast. Regardless, it sounds refreshing.

The WildWest Institute is back at it on Tuesday, Oct. 24, with a forum called Actualizing Montana’s Restoration Economy. Panelists Pat Williams (O’Connor Center for the Rocky Mountain West), Marnie Criley (Wildlands CPR) and Dr. Dan Spencer (UM’s Environmental Studies Program) will talk about opportunities in the northern Rockies for employing environmental restoration as an economic engine. The forum starts at 7 PM in room 106 of UM’s Gallagher Business Building, and it’s free and open to everyone, but you have to bring your own whirled peas.

Alternately, if you’re going to be on campus, you could drop in and listen to Lucinda Delaney Schroeber share her war stories as one of the first female special agents ever employed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, for which she acted as an undercover anti-poaching expert. She’s also written a book about it, A Hunt for Justice: The True Story of a Woman Undercover Wildlife Agent, which will likely be on hand. Free (the presentation, not the book) starting at 7 PM, Tuesday, Oct. 24, in the Charles H. Clapp Building, room 131.

And just to prove that diversity thrives at school, the middle of the week is stuffed with campus stuff that has a lot more to do with browsing and wowing than listening and learning. Wednesday, Oct. 25, it’s Campus Rec’s used outdoor gear sale in the University Center from noon to 5 PM. Get or get rid of cheap gear, or just go give yourself some ideas. The Outdoor Program can guide you at 243-5172.

Then, on Thursday, Oct. 26, the geniuses at Teton Gravity Research bring their new Anomaly to UM’s Urey Lecture Hall for a 7:30 PM screening. Guess what it’s about? No, really. Three guesses. Two. Okay fine. It’s about skiing and snowboading. If it’s not jaw-dropping I’ll be shocked. Tickets cost $7 in advance (243-5172) or $9 at the door.

Or maybe you’ve got a little more to spend. Ever wanted a long-weekend cabin getaway on Seeley Lake? Maybe a Russell Chatham lithograph? How about a day tailing a Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks researcher as he uses hounds to track, capture and de-collar “the reclusive and seldom-see mountain lion.” You can buy it now (for $1,500) or you can bid on it at the Montana Natural History Center’s Born to be Wild Auction on Saturday, Oct. 28, at the Harley-Davidson party room on Airport Way. The Montana Natural History Center, in case you haven’t had the pleasure, is Missoula educators’ first stop in introducing the kiddos to the wonders of the out of doors. Tickets are $50 each, or $45 if you’re already a member, and animal masks made by high-schoolers (some will be displayed in downtown’s Dana Gallery the week prior) will be for sale at the door, so there are all sorts of opportunities to help out. Expect no-host cocktails from 6-6:30, dinner at 7, with the auction, auctioneered by Mayor John Engen himself, from 7:45 to 8:30. Call the MNHC at 327-0405 to buy tickets, lion chases or lithographs, and feel good that your money will not only go toward giving a bunch of kids a first glimpse at something they may choose to spend the rest of their lives staring at, but will simultaneously contribute to the regeneration of Mountain High’s readership, assuming you also teach the little tykes to read. Don’t forget to teach the little tykes to read, eh?

And remember to send your events, cancellations, corrections and old snowshoes my way.

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