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Venturesome Overland

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Some of you know that I’m a librarian. I’ve been thinking a lot, since moving back to the US, about what skills I can bring to bear on making my community and country better places to live. Since I’m trained in curating, analyzing and sharing information, I decided that what I could do is help people learn better skills and dispositions for dealing with fake/false news and media manipulation. I’m partnering with @humanitiesmontana for their Informed Citizens series and my first gig is at my own @missoulapubliclibrary talking about how fake news spreads. I’m super honored and more than a little freaked out because, 1) it’s my library and I want to do a good job for them, and 2) it’s a complicated topic with exactly zero easy answers. Anyway, it’s my way of giving back (and fighting back) using the tools and education I have. If you’re interested in me using this space over 2020 to share tips and tricks with you let me know. I’m sure I can fit those in between photos of cats and cars! 😉#fakenews #fightfakenews #librarian #librarianlife #humanitiesmontana #informedcitizens #democracy #criticalthinking #mediamanipulation #missoula #missoulapubliclibrary #think #library #loveyourlibrary
Man. I did not think @ourblackcoffee @blackcoffee.mt could make me any happier, but these gift boxes are the. best. Needed some Missoula gifts for friends out of state and this is perfect. #blackcoffeeroastingco #coffee #madeinmissoula #buylocal #missoula #theperfectgift #missoulamade #locallyowned #ilovecoffee
Today I went to the vet and got all but three of my toenails cut before I bit the tech and drew blood. The vet said I’m healthy enough to put up a good fight. I’m told you never get a second chance to make a first impression. I think they’ll remember me. #thejadekitten #biter #vetvisit #dontmesswithme #vicious #showemwhosboss #cat #kitten #catsofinstagram #kittensofinstagram #ihatethevet
The Jade Kitten wishes you a Happy Solstice. ☀️ #thejadekitten #wintersolstice #solstice #happysolstice #herecomesthesun

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In Western Montana you can drive north off of I-90 onto the Flathead Reservation of the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes and find an island of conservation.

Like many of the high hills and mountains in this part of the state, the National Bison Range was once literally an island, one of many in Glacial Lake Missoula, an ice age marvel that covered the entire region 10,000 – 15,000 years ago. Today the range is a series of grassy plains, rolling hills, and forests that provide refuge for our new national mammal.

At the grand old age of 108, the National Bison Range was established by President Theodore Roosevelt and is the first piece of land ever purchased with money earmarked by Congress specifically for the conservation of wildlife. Despite the National Bison Range’s age and status as a “first” though, the cultural, spiritual and ecological history of bison stretches back much further than that. Today, the range is home to over 300 bison – three times the number of total animals left after the colonial decimation of the great herds in the nineteenth century.

Cows and calves roam the hills in loose herds. Big bulls strike off alone or in smaller groups and browse the brush or wallow in dust baths. Climbing Red Sleep Drive yields spectacular views of the Bitterroot mountains and Flathead River, a tributary of which meanders along the north boundary refuge. Elk, deer, antelope and other large fauna make their home in the refuge, and birds abound. Early in May we caught site of a huge cinnamon colored black bear making her way across the steep hillsides. Meadowlarks perch and trill their calls and the ground is alive with wildflowers –arrowleaf balsamroot, lupine, Woods’ roses, and the extraordinary native bitterroot, emerging fluorescent from among the rocks.

We headed up there one evening in early summer to catch the golden hour and see where the wild things are.

Photos: Julie Edwards

5 comments on “An Island of Conservation: Montana’s National Bison Range

    1. mtdrift_julie says:

      Thanks so much Roselinde! Next time you’re in Montana look us up and we can take a drive up there!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Roselinde says:

        Cool, I definitely will! 😉

        Liked by 1 person

  1. oldpoet56 says:

    Simply beautiful, thank you for posting this article.

    Like

  2. oldpoet56 says:

    Oops, I forgot, I am going to reblog this one for you. Hopefully more folks will get a chance to see it and hopefully reblogging it will get you a few more followers.

    Like

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