Montana outdoor recreation

Time to Cool Off: Missoula’s Best Boating Destinations

Keep Cool with boating in MissoulaSummer is certainly off to a great start here in Missoula.  With temperatures well into the 90’s for the foreseeable future, we’ll definitely all be looking for places to cool off and beat the heat.  Luckily, in Missoula, there are plenty of places to enjoy the sun without overheating.  In fact, Missoula was even once named the Best River Town in America by Outside Magazine. From popular swimming holes to kayaking and paddling on rivers and lakes, we have your guide to the best boating destinations and water holes in all of Missoula.  Book your room at our Bed and Breakfast this summer, and come keep cool with us in Missoula. Continue reading

Into the Wild: Meet Missoula’s Wildlife

Wildlife in Missoula, MontanaThe spring and summer months in Missoula are perfect for getting outside and enjoying the splendid and abundant nature that surrounds us.  Whether you venture into the Blue Mountain Recreation Area just behind our Inn, the Lolo National Forest, or anywhere else near the rugged town of Missoula, you’re sure to find untold treasures, spectacular views, and plenty of wild creatures along the way.  In fact, the opportunities for wildlife watching in Missoula are unparalleled if you’re patient.  Venture into the wilderness, and you might just find bald eagles, osprey, bighorn sheep, badgers, mountain goats, deer, and so much more.  Our Bed and Breakfast is the perfect place to begin your journey, with 20 private acres of wildlife habitat, directly bordering a national forest.  Pack your binoculars and field guides, and book your room at our Missoula Bed and Breakfast today! Continue reading

Trout Fishing in Missoula

Trout Fishing MissoulaMontana is called the Big Sky State for a reason; it’s a state of unlimited possibilities for adventure, and the sky is truly the limit. In that same vein, a trip to Missoula wouldn’t be complete without some sort of exciting outdoor adventure.  With the warming spring months upon us, there’s no better time to plan your adventures for the upcoming year, either.  Spring in Missoula happens to be a fantastic time to try your hand at fishing; trout fishing in particular. Fishing is a central part of life during the spring and summer months in Missoula, and of course there is no shortage of lake and river waters to explore.  Come stay with us at Missoula’s best Bed and Breakfast this spring, and experience the joy of fishing in Missoula for yourself.   Continue reading

Missoula Disc Golf Courses

missoula-disc-golf

Picture from traditional golf course Canyon River Golf Club in Missoula, Montana.

Missoula disc golf courses (also known as “folf” or “frisbee golf”) are a fitness friendly way to leisurely enjoy the great outdoors.  Missoula has several disc golf courses scattered throughout town. If you are a beginner, you are in a perfect place to learn. Local Missoula “folfers” are welcoming and helpful; often letting you play through their slower moving and larger groups.

Disc golf is similar to regular golf; however, instead of using golf clubs and balls aiming for a hole, Disc Golf players use golf discs and aim for a Disc Pole Hole, a pole extending up from the ground with chains and a basket where the disc lands. The object of the game is to complete each hole in the fewest number of throws, starting from a tee area and finishing at the Disc Pole Hole.

Generally, a course is 9 or 18 Disc Pole Holes long. Players start at hole one and complete the course in order, playing through to the last hole. The player with lowest total cumulative score wins.

Disc Golf differs from traditional Golf in important ways. Disc golf courses can use a wide variety of terrain. Often times, land not suitable for other park activities or development is perfect terrain for a disc golf course.

Disc golf is one of the best lifetime fitness sports. It is easy to learn, a healthy activity and accessible to people of all ages and fitness levels. If you can throw a Frisbee® and you like to have fun, you can play disc golf.

Today there are over 2,500 Disc Golf Courses in the United States. There are between 7,000,000 and 10,000,000 people who have played the game. Since 1976, there have been over 24,000 members of the Professional Disc Golf Association.

Pro players compete in more than 390 sanctioned tournaments and a Worlds Championship annually. The positive experience with Disc Golf and the growing demand for courses have led to the expansion of the sport all over the country, from small towns to urban areas.

There are four areas in Missoula, Montana where disc golf (folf) is played.  All four Missoula folf areas offer 18 holes.  Destination Missoula provided the course maps.

Blue Mountain is the hiker’s course. This area spreads across a large expanse on the face of Blue Mountain located just south of Missoula. The first half of the course is mostly open with occasional tree obstacles that can block the view of the basket, followed by the second half of the course which dives down into the wooded ravines of Blue Mountain.

The second half can require a skilled hand at tree-dodging; though the fairways themselves are fairly clear if you can keep from playing in the rough. Overall, a “big-arm” course that requires plenty of long shots.  Course map.

Pattee Canyon is a technical course set in the Pattee Canyon recreation area that will find the player in amongst the trees after the first few holes. Often over-crowded after the 5:00pm work hour has been reached, this course is likely the most popular course in the valley and around Missoula with a waiting line gathering at the first hole.

This crowd, however, is no reason to skip this course as it provides a great challenge for folf players of all skill levels.  Course map.

Linda Vista Golf Course gives you the chance to run a game of disc golf on a traditional golf course. Linda Vista folf course operates during the off-season when the course isn’t being used for regular golf. For more information visit their website or give them a call at 406-251-3655.

When you use the Snow Bowl Ski Area, take the lift ride to the top! Seriously, you get a view before you start playing, and during the course of play you are awarded plenty of views of the Missoula Valley when teeing down the 1,100+ ft. hole that plays down a ski run. The added bonus of this course is that it boasts a restaurant and bar at the base of the lift near the parking lot.

Blue Mountain Bed and Breakfast offers scenic mountain views and superbly delicious cuisine with complimentary fresh breakfasts each morning.  Consider staying with us when you go on your next Missoula disc golf course adventure!

Written by Kristi Dement of Bed and Breakfast Blogging

Missoula Top 5 Skate Park

MOBASH Skatepark

According to Thrasher Magazine, Missoula has “one of the top five skate parks in the country.”  However, MoBASH skatepark did not begin on an engineer’s desk or even in a City Hall meeting room.  It started with three close friends who built wooden ramps underneath a local Missoula bridge.

Since Missoula had no areas designated for recreational skateboarding, Chris Bacon, Andy Kemmis, and Ross Peterson decided to build their own skate park.  Eventually, these three friends were kicked out of their makeshift skate park, but fortunately, their story caught the eye of Missoula Parks and Recreation Department Director Donna Gaukler.

In 2000, Gaukler met with the three friends to discuss options available to create a recreational skating area.  By 2003, the Missoula City Council approved plans for a skatepark.  With plans finally approved, there still was plenty of work left to do.  Bacon, Kemmis, and Peterson began fundraising.

Over the next three years, their project received a lot of support.  The support came not only from within the Missoula community, but across the country.  The future skatepark received donations from famous people like Jeff Ament, the bassist for Pearl Jam, and the legendary world-famous skateboarder Tony Hawk.  A number of local establishments and private donors contributed funds.

When a local Missoula family donated the final $100,000 needed to complete the skatepark and purchased the naming rights–MoBASH is an acronym using letters from the names of the family members.  The skate park was finished by September of 2006, when Tony Hawk’s production company put on a free event to commemorate MoBASH’s completion.  Over ten thousand people attended the event, making it the largest grand opening of any facility in Missoula history at that time.

Skate Montana

Since MoBASH has been complete, the three friends have started the Montana Skatepark Association which aims to help other Montana communities create new skateparks and recreational opportunities.  This fifteen thousand square foot park is situated just across the Orange Street Bridge from downtown Missoula.

Built by Grindline, the MoBASH Skatepark has a separate street complete with granite ledges and a huge bank wall separating it from the bowls. The tranny section is massive with everything from mellow to cradle to gnarly. For the purist, there is the kidney bowl complete with death box and love seat.

This park is a must skate for all Montanans and visitors alike. Skateboarders must wear helmets, but pads are optional.  MoBASH Skatepark is open daily in McCormick Park in downtown Missoula at 600 Cregg Lane, Missoula, MT 59801. For more information, phone 721-PARK.

Be sure to stay at the luxurious Blue Mountain Bed and Breakfast.  Hosts Brady and Elaine welcome you to enjoy their scenic mountain getaway.  Each morning guests savor delicious homemade gourmet breakfasts as part of their Blue Mountain Experience!

Written by Kristi Dement of Bed and Breakfast Blogging

Visit Montana Video

Visit Blue Mountain Bed and Breakfast in Missoula, Montana.  This You Tube video, produced by Visit Montana, shows our majestic mountains from awesome aerial views.

We have freshwater lakes and creeks to go fly fishing as well as mountain peaks to climb.  Ride down the river by river boat paddling.

Like horses?  We have lots of horses to ride or to watch being tamed in Montana. Our wildlife is incredible.  It is common to see moose in the river.  Owls, eagles, and other birds fly in the Big Sky.

Our snow is perfect for buffaloes to roam as well as for snow skiing escapades and cross country skiing adventures.  We are home to the University of Montana.  Go Grizzlies!

Ride a motorcycle on our open roads.  See the beautiful way Native American tribes dress and even attend powwows in our area.

We have beautiful clear water.  Our animals “range” from deerdonkeysrams, bears, squirrels, and more.

Experience the beauty of a walking tour or travel via a tour car.  Montana is one of the most beautiful states to live in.

Whatever you decide to do here in Montana, we hope you stay with us at Blue Mountain Bed and Breakfast.  We have three lovely rooms and two special suites to choose from.  Read all about the Blue Mountain Experience.

Savor our bountiful breakfasts with the option for us to serve dinner to four or more guests.  Brady and Elaine are wonderful hosts.  They also host special events such as weddings, anniversary celebrations, and family reunions.  Blue Mountain Bed and Breakfast has earned several accreditations.

We offer directions to get to our Missoula, Montana location.  Please check out our area links and area events to get a better understanding of all that is available in our fantastic community.  We also have onsite leisure and activities to experience.  Escape today to stay at Blue Mountain Bed and Breakfast.  We have gorgeous mountain views and scenic Bitterroot river perspectives.

Written by Kristi Dement of Bed and Breakfast Blogging

Blue Mountain Bed and Breakfast in MisSOULa

Blue Mountain Bed and Breakfast loves being in MisSOULa, Montana!  

Home to:

    • #1 Grizzly Eagles
    • Tasty Big Dipper Ice Cream
    • Substantial Subaru dealership
    • Events & Concerts at the Washington-Grizzly Stadium
    • Beautiful Bitterroot River
    • Live Performances at WILMA
    • The Missoulian
    • KECI TV
    • Splash Mountain Waterpark
    • Destination Downtown Missoula
    • The Western Montana Fair
    • 8 KPAX
    • Gorgeous Blue Mountains!

Source: YouTube video “MisSOULa” produced by Michael Melugin

Local Missoula Activities

Arts and Culture

  • Artsy Art Galleries
  • Awesome Attractions
  • Entertaining Entertainment
  • Extraordinary Events
  • Moving Museums
  • Musical Music
  • Theatrical Theatre

Entertainment

  • Brewing Breweries
  • Cool Casinos
  • Delicious Distilleries
  • Extra Special Events
  • Fantastic Food and Drink
  • Night Out Nightlife
  • Savvy Shopping
  • Winning Wineries

Explore

  • A Carousel for Missoula
  • Delightful Day Trips
  • Garnet Ghost Town
  • Golden Gold and Gem Mining
  • Hot Hot Springs
  • Lovely Lewis and Clark Trail
  • Pleasing Parks
  • Wild Wildlife

Outdoor Recreation

  • Beautiful Biking Scenery
  • Breathtaking Birding
  • Cool Camping
  • Great Golfing
  • Heartwarming Horseback Riding
  • Heavenly Hiking
  • Watching Missoula Osprey play baseball

Water Activities

  • Fun Fishing
  • Kind Kayaking
  • Lovely Lakes
  • Rad Rafting
  • Rolling Rivers
  • Safe Stand-Up Paddle Boating
  • Tubular Tubing

Winter Activities

  • Cross Country Skiing
  • Icy Ice Fishing
  • Ice-tacular Ice Skating
  • Skiing and Snowboarding
  • Snowy Sleigh Rides
  • Speedy Snowmobiling
  • Snazzy Snowshoeing

Blue Mountain Bed and Breakfast Relaxation

  • View wildlife with binoculars from your deck
  • Read guidebooks and books about our local history
  • Enjoy a refreshing drink while sitting in the garden
  • Listen to the Old Player Piano
  • Watch wild birds and hummingbirds
  • Take in views of the scenic mountains, valley, and waterfall
  • Game of billiards in the lodge’s recreation room
  • Play horseshoes or have a picnic in private area outside
  • Stay inside and watch a movie on the wide screen

Remember Paul McCartney will make his first ever appearance in Missoula, Montana when the “Out There” tour rolls into Washington-Grizzly Stadium on August 5, 2014.  We love MisSOULa and our guests do, too!  There is nothing like the Blue Mountain B&B experience!

Written by Kristi Dement of Bed and Breakfast Blogging

Hiking Bass Creek in the Bitterroot Valley!

CLIMB EVERY MOUNTAIN: Hiking Bass Creek in the beautiful Bitterroot Valley!

One of the many falls on Bass Creek

One of the many falls on Bass Creek

In Montana, sometimes the weather changes overnight.  The last week of June offered temperatures in the 60’s and 70’s.  This week things have heated up into the 90’s and in some places past 100!  When summer starts to sizzle, it’s time to play in the shade!  After fixing breakfast for guests and watering the hanging plants, we decided it was a good day to hit the road in search of shady pastures and clear mountain creeks.  With bed and breakfast guests arriving around 4:00, we opted for a small hike up an area that is a favorite with us.  Bass Creek is only a short drive from Blue Mountain Bed Breakfast and offers wonderful afternoon shade and easy access to the stream.  It’s a win, win on any hot summer day and a place our dogs and Godson love to go to beat the heat!  On this particular adventure, the wildflowers were such a treat.  Everything from wild roses to thimbleberries and syringa were in full bloom.  That, matched with the sparkling mica on the rocks, the rushing stream and green foliage made for the perfect day.  Several beautiful, shallow pool areas offered ample opportunities to dip our paws in the soothing water.  (We did check to make sure nobody was fishing the creek nearby.)  I really don’t know if the four leggeds or the two leggeds had more fun?  It was a great way to welcome in the first day of July after being so accustomed to this year’s cool June.

 

Elaine and Charlie

Elaine and Charlie

*Time of Year to Visit:  Bass Creek is a beautiful hike any time of year, but is particularly wonderful in the heat of summer because it offers so much shade.  Even smack dab in the middle of the day, the hike is truly enjoyable!  During the summer, Bass Creek is almost always our first choice because it is so scenic and cool and such a short distance to drive.  Of course, it’s a beautiful place to hike no matter what time of year and when the leaves start to turn in the fall the hike is stunning!

Note: If you plan on camping during a holiday, the area can fill up fairly quickly.

 

Fishing fun!

Fishing fun!

*Driving Directions from Missoula: Drive 20 miles south on Highway 93, passing through Lolo and Florence.  If you are staying at Blue Mountain Bed and Breakfast,

it is about 15 miles and will take about twenty five minutes.  Be looking for the Bass Creek and Larry Creek signs which are off on the right hand side of the highway.

 

Cliffs along the creek

Cliffs along the creek

There is plenty of parking space at the trail head which is 2.5 miles in from the highway.  The road is paved part of the way and passes through lush pasture land with views of the mountain peaks.The last part of the short drive takes you through the shade of trees and across a bridge.  You will want to stay on the main dirt road which goes toward the left.  The Forest Service is currently thinning part of the area on the right hand side of the road to prevent the spread of pine beetles.  The camp area and trail head are not effected by the logging work being done, however.  If you are coming from Hamilton, drive 23 miles north on Highway 93 and turn left at Bass Creek.

 

Fall fishing

Fall fishing

 

 

 

 

 

*Area Opportunities:  Besides hiking, Bass Creek offers some really good fishing part of the year.   It is also popular with horse back riders and is great if you have a pooch or two.  The campground is large and very close to the trail head which makes it convenient.  The creek is within just a few hundred feet of the campground and the initial trail follows the creek very closely which is nice.  There are fresh water spigots, a well-maintained outhouse, picnic tables and fire pits.  There is an unloading area for horses and many places for tie up.

Like most areas in Missoula, Bass Creek is designated as a NO TRAP area which means it is truly dog friendly.  In other areas around the state, dogs have occasionally been caught in traps.  It’s a subject that involves many heated and on-going arguments.

 

*The Hike:  The larger Bass Creek area is surrounded by beauty from birds and butterflies to magnificent rock cliffs and clear, refreshing water.

The Larry Creek Campground side offers an actual fire ecolIMG_1609 smallogy trail with many interpretive signs along the way.  Anywhere within the area you will find an abundance of flora and fauna and varying types of ecosystems.  The trail we like to take in the heat of summer is near the Bass Creek campsite.  To get onto the trail, you walk a short distance on an old vehicle-restricted road.  About one hundred yards up the road, the trail forks to the left.  The creek is on the left hand side and the trail follows it closely for the first mile, winding through shady trees.  On the right hand side, a person walks under magnificent cliffs and through areas with large boulders.  The stream alternates between areas of swift moving water and shallow pools that are perfect for a hot summer’s day dip.  The trail eventually begins to climb high above the creek itself.  Eventually a person comes to a log dam where the trail again nears the creek.  The area near the end of the hike offers spectacular views of the surrounding mountains!  The hike is a 3 mile round trip (you hike out the same trail you came in on.)  It takes a little over an hour without stops and there is a gain of only 500 feet in elevation (not much for a hike in the mountains of Montana).  It usually takes us several hours to cover the first mile simply because we enjoy stopping to wade or fish and take in the beautiful scenery.  The hike is so gradual that it can be enjoyed by almost anyone and makes the perfect family outing.

If you would like additional information regarding recreational areas in the Missoula and Bitterroot areas, click here on the U.S. National Forest Campground Guide.  Another great resource is the guide book Day Hikes Around Missoula Montana by Robert Stone.  We always send guests with a copy when they take off for a day’s outing.

 

Wild rose

Wild rose

Trail Wise Tips- keeping one another safe:  The sun and heat can catch up to a person quickly and even in the winter, water and sunscreen are important items to take along on a hike.  Another thing to keep in mind is that bears and other wildlife are sometimes in the area and so packing things in and out and keeping food a safe distance from camp at night is important.  Feeding ground squirrels may seem fun, but if they consistently are fed a poor diet, they can actually starve during the winter.  And you know what they say about bears… “A fed bear is a dead bear.”

At Bass Creek, dogs need only be leashed in the campground area, but even on the trail it’s important to bring a leash along.  On an early spring outing, Brady came upon an accident that occurred when a couple of mules were spooked by dogs.  Remember that in the early part of the year, horses are pretty “green” no matter what their age.  It’s a particularly important time to have  your dogs under control because one darting out from a bush is all it can take for someone to be seriously injured.  When you do encounter horses on the trail, step off on the lower side as far as possible.  Being familiar with trail etiquette is important whether you are a dog walker, horse back rider, hiker or mountain biker.  Having the opportunity to enjoy open space is truly a gift and something we all have a duty to help protect! 

DSCF3677 small

 

 

 

 

*Staying at Blue Mountain Bed and Breakfast:  You can always opt to just sit and relax near the bed and breakfast waterfall, but if you like to explore we have lots of recommendations.  There are plenty of hiking and naturalist books to go around and we will help you find the best places to enjoy the out of doors.  If you would like to plan your trip before you get to our bed and breakfast, just give us a call (1-406-251-4457) or an email: stay@bluemountainbb.com and we will help you out.  Our AREA webpage offers many fun local excursion ideas as well.  Whether you stay with us or are a local just wanting a few tips, we are happy to help!

Missoula Fly Fishing

Rock Creek Montana fly fishing

Fly fishing on the legendary Rock Creek.

If you fly fish, there’s a good chance you’ve already fished the waters around Missoula, Montana. If you haven’t, you probably wish you could.

Fly fishing the Blackfoot River–always a dream for anglers–caught the world’s attention when it was featured in the 1992 film A River Runs Through It. Since that time, people from all over the globe have come to Montana in order to witness the majestic beauty of this land. Many arrive with dreams of big fish.

If you’re an experienced angler, bring your gear and let your instincts take charge. If you’re a novice, it’s advisable to use a guide.

There are several Fly Fishing Outfitters in and around Missoula: Continue reading

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