Archive for the ‘Outdoor Activities’ Category

Hike to Hidden Lake – A Pictorial

September 4th, 2013 by kimtaylor

This blog post consists of more pictures than words, and once you see those pictures you’ll understand why.

On Labor Day weekend a few of us took a popular hike in Glacier Park to Hidden Lake.  While the crowds were plenty, they thinned out after the halfway point when most visitors take a few pictures at the Hidden Lake overlook and turn back to their cars.

To get to the trail head, drive up to Logan Pass Visitor’s Center. You may have a challenge finding a parking space during peak times as lot fills up quickly.  [Local’s tip: if you can’t find a parking space, drive out of the parking lot and turn right, less than a 1/4 mile below are some additional parking spaces, parallel to the road.) The trailhead starts behind the Visitor’s Center and the first 1.5 miles to the overlook can be crowded.  But resist the urge to cross this off your hiking list because of this, the views of Hidden Lake from the overlook and up-close are spectacular and the dipping your toes in the crystal clear water will make you forget about crowds.

Hidden Lake Trailhead

Hidden Lake Trailhead

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Views on the Way to Hidden Lake

Views on the Way to Hidden Lake

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Boardwalk Trail to HIdden Lake Overlook

Boardwalk Trail to HIdden Lake Overlook

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hidden Lake View from Above.

Hidden Lake View from Above.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Crystal Clear Water Greets Intrepid Hikers.

Crystal Clear Water Greets Intrepid Hikers.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mountain Goats are commonly seen along the Hidden Lake Trail

Mountain Goats are commonly seen along the Hidden Lake Trail

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Author: Sarah Stewart

Fantastic Fishing in the Flathead

August 12th, 2013 by kimtaylor

This could be you! [Photo from the Lakestream Fly Shop website]

This could be you! [Photo from the Lakestream Fly Shop website]

If you want to get some fishing in while on vacation in Montana there are a variety of resources to get information on where to go, what bait or flies to use and which fish live where…

First of all you do need a license to fish in Montana (the exception is if you decide to fish in Glacier National Park, no license is needed, but they do have their own set of rules.  Go to: http://www.nps.gov/glac/planyourvisit/fishing.htm for details).

Locally to purchase a visitor’s fishing license you can get them at several locations close to Whitefish: Lakestream Fly Shop [334 Central Ave.], Sportsman and Ski Haus [Mountain Mall] and Stumptown Anglers [5790 US Hwy 93 S]. Prices vary depending how long the license is good for & age, (under 11 years of age licenses are FREE!) See http://fwp.mt.gov/fishing/license/availableLicenses.html for prices, and you can even apply online.

Fishing opportunities abound here in the Flathead Valley.  Within 50 miles of Kalispell there are over 236 fishing “holes” for you to explore.

While you’re picking up your license, pick up the current year’s Montana Fishing Regulation booklet, chock full of good info including types of fish at which locale you can expect to find, as well as the fishing rules you need to be aware of.

For the best places to buy poles, flies or bait and to get advice on “what’s biting” stop in at some of our local fishing shops: Lakestream Fly Shop (406-862-1298 – http://www.lakestream.com/ ) and Stumptown Anglers (406 862-4554 – http://www.stumptownangler.com/) Both shops are well versed in the area’s fishing “gold mines” and they can also set you up with a fishing guide, if you’d rather just fish! Many of the local rafting companies also offer half and full day fly fishing trips.

So come to Whitefish and “go fish!”

Author: Sarah Stewart

Active Summer Fun at the Whitefish Mountain Resort

July 8th, 2013 by kimtaylor

Summer activities abound at the Whitefish Mountain Resort

Summer activities abound at the Whitefish Mountain Resort

If you think the Whitefish Mountain Resort is just for skiing, think again.  The Summer season has the mountain humming with activities for kids of all ages. And since it’s just a short 10 min drive from our front door, it’s easy to get there.

Scenic Lift Rides: Get whisked up to the summit of the Big Mountain via an open chair lift or enclosed gondola for a scenic ride that will have you oohing and aahing over views of the entire Flathead Valley and Glacier National Park. Round trip tickets are $12 for adults and $8 for juniors (7 – 12 yrs) or seniors 65+.  Rides are free for kids 6 and under and for 2012/13 winter season pass holders.  You can also buy a one way ticket for just $6, in case you want to hike up/down the mountain.

Hiking: There is a great hiking trail that takes you up to the top of the mountain.  Read more about it in our previous blog post.

Zip Line Tours: Whiz atop the trees 300 feet above ground as you glide along on your mountain adventure. The zip line tours are growing in popularity by leaps and bounds so reservations are recommended to avoid disappointment.  Prices are $75 for a 5 –zip tour and $84 for a 7-zip tour.

Mountain biking: Bike rentals are available on-mountain and with two new trails scheduled to open by August 1, there will be more that 25 miles of lift accessed free-ride and cross country mountain bike trails. The Summit trail offers spectacular views while Runaway Train offers adrenaline pumping free ride biking.  You can have your bike taken to the summit, for a downhill ride all the way. Prices vary.

Alpine Slide:  Great for kids and adults alike, take a sled and race down straight-a-ways and banked curves. Children under 48” have to ride with an adult. $8 per ride, discounts for multiple rides.

Aerial Adventure Park: Strap in and challenge yourself on a variety of treetop courses that range in difficulty – cross suspended bridges and cable walk ways, climb on nets and ladders, swing on trapezes and negotiate other fun elements.  $39/Adults or $29/Kids 12 and under.

Spider Monkey Mountain: Just for kids!  They can play all day for just $10. Children find their way up through a webbed tower and at the top are rewarded with a giant slide ride down.

Summit Nature Center: Located at the Summit House atop Big Mountain, the Nature Center offers a fun place for families to explore with hands-on discovery to learn about the mountain environment.  They also offer a daily wildflower nature discovery walk in July & August.  Free.

Dining: There are plenty of dining options available in the Whitefish Mountain Resort: For Lunch head to Base Lodge Bar & Café for casual lunch dining, The Bierstube offers a patio and serves up great burgers and beer or the Summit House restaurant where you can dine in the highest restaurant in NW Montana with views of Glacier National Park.  For Dinner the Hellroaring Saloon and Eatery has an outside deck and offers casual fare starting at 5 pm.  For a more upscale choice enjoy fine dining at Café Kandahar with Award-Winning chef Andy Blanton.

The Whitefish Mountain Resort… it’s just not for skiing!  For more info visit their website: www.skiwhitefish.com

Author: Sarah Stewart

Share your favorite #montanamoment and win

June 26th, 2013 by kimtaylor

The Montana Office of Tourism is sponsoring a contest where you can win a trip back to Montana, by sharing a picture of your favorite “Montana Moment”.  The contest runs through August 26th, 2013.

Here are the basic entry requirements:

  • The photo must be taken in Montana.
  • If a person is depicted, the person must be the Entrant; no other person(s) may be depicted.
  • The Entry must not have been submitted previously in a contest or promotion.
  • The Entry must not contain content that is false, inaccurate or misleading.
  • If you have more than one picture, each submission must be substantially different.

What's your favorite #montanamoment ?

What’s your favorite #montanamoment ?

There are three ways to enter the contest: via Twitter, Instagram or direct upload via visitmt.com website.

All eligible Contest Entries received during the Promotion Period will be judged on the basis of creativity (50%), and photographic quality (50%)

One Grand Prize Winner will receive the following: Winner’s choice of a five (5) day, four (4) night Montana National Park vacation package; winner can choose either a Winter or Summer Glacier National Park or Yellowstone National Park vacation package. Includes the following for 2 people: hotel accommodations, airfare, rental car, a $500 credit toward two (2) trip experiences (sightseeing, outdoor activity, or cultural/learning) per person totaling four (4) trip experiences and a park pass to the chosen National Park. The Grand Prize Winner will be determined on or about September 15, 2013.

Plus, there are Weekly Prize Winners too, that are selected randomly from all eligible entries for that week, of Montana Coffee Packages from FireTower Coffee in Helena and Huckleberry taffy from Sweet Palace in Philipsburg.

So… if you have a great shot from your last visit to Montana enter this contest. We’d love to see you again!

For full contest details go to: http://visitmt.com/step-out-of-bounds/montana-moments.htm

Author: Sarah Stewart

Walking trails around Whitefish

June 16th, 2013 by kimtaylor

Katie & Newman ready to hit the trail.

Katie & Newman ready to hit the trail.

We are often asked where there are hiking or walking trails for short morning hikes or after-dinner strolls – nothing epic,  just enough to get the blood pumping or to burn off a few calories.  There are several nearby options and the first one is right out the front door of the Hidden Moose.

Whitefish has a walking/bike trail that runs in front of the Moose and can take you all around town.  This paved trail is a great place to head out for an early morning jog before our Montana-sized breakfasts!  You can even take it into town if you’re headed to dinner or plan on imbibing a bit and don’t want to drive.  It’s less than 2 miles from the front door of the Lodge to downtown Whitefish, so you easily walk to or from town from here.  We have maps available of the walking trail or you can pick one up at the Whitefish Visitor’s Center located at 307 Spokane Ave.

If you really want to break a sweat but don’t want to travel far, hike the Danny On trail located at the Whitefish Mountain Resort.  The Danny On trail is 3.8 heart pumping miles to the summit of the Big Mountain. And, you have the option of riding up on the chair lift [$6/one way] and hiking down, hiking up and riding down on the chair lift or hiking both ways.  This trail offers spectacular views of the Flathead Valley and once you reach the summit you’re rewarded with a beautiful & unique view of Glacier National Park.  Also at the summit there is a restaurant, and environmental education center and rest rooms.  Leashed dogs are allowed on the trail, but remember if you bring Fido along you have to hike both up & down as dogs are not permitted to ride the chair lift.

The Whitefish Trail is a relatively new hiking option close to Whitefish and is growing in popularity and size as each year they create more trails to add to the system. There are several trailheads that can get you on your way within a few miles of the Moose and the

Bear grass in abundance on the Whitefish Trail in June.

Bear grass in abundance on the Whitefish Trail in June.

length of hike is up to you as there are many options to choose from.  This trail is well maintained & marked and is dog, horse and bicycle friendly as well as hiker friendly. It’s been a great asset to the community and is a beautiful, meandering trail that lets you get out in nature without the time commitment and drive to a far-away trailhead. It’s a great option if you want to grab a packed lunch at a local deli and head out for a morning hike with a picnic as your reward.   Again, maps of the Whitefish Trail are available at the Whitefish Visitor’s Center.

None of the trails listed above will have you needing any special gear.  Sturdy walking shoes or tennis shoes are all you need for your feet.  Dressing in layers is recommended. Now get out there!

Author: Sarah Stewart

Glacier National Park – plan your visit.

June 10th, 2013 by kimtaylor

This friendly goat was spotted at Logan Pass last year.

This friendly goat was spotted at Logan Pass last year.

So you’re coming to Montana with plans to visit Glacier National Park and you want to get the most out of your trip. This blog post is all about links and tips to help you do just that. [Look for highlighted links to take you to the pages mentioned.]

OK the question on everyone’s mind at this time of year is when will the whole Going to the Sun Road be open for car traffic?  Currently it’s scheduled for June 21, 2013 – with the caveat that the spring plowing is completed.  To see the status of the plowing situation you can visit the Park’s Plowing Status page.  So much of what goes on in the park is weather dependent, so it’s always best to check out their website before heading out.  Which brings me to…

Trail conditions:  Especially in the early and late seasons it’s important to check out trail conditions before heading out on a hike in the Park.  Even in the peak times, trails can suddenly be closed due to bear activity in the area.  One year on a hike to Snyder Lake we were turned around by a Park Ranger about ½ mile from our destination by a bear that was hanging around the Lake.  Go to the Trail Status Report page on the Parks Website for up to date info… then take heed!

Road conditions: As trail conditions can change so can the road conditions, due to weather, construction, etc.  Don’t have your plans scuppered because the road you want to travel on is closed.  Check before hand on the Parks Road Status Page

Weather: This is a biggie.  Things can be calm & beautiful in Whitefish, but turbulent in the Park (or visa versa)… you just never know.  While you should always be prepared for just about any weather situation that Mother Nature can throw at you, check out detailed forecasts on the Park’s weather page.  To see for yourself what the weather is like you can view live web-cams. [There’s even an Osprey Cam.]

What’s Open: The various visitor centers in Glacier National Park have different opening dates and hours of operations, for details go to their Operating Hours and Seasons page.

Shuttle Buses:  One of the great ways of getting around the Park that’s cheap (can’t get cheaper than FREE!) and convenient is the free shuttle busses that operate in the Park, (this year July 1-Sept 2nd, 2013).  These are great for hopping on and off and for shuttling hikers from where they left their car to where they plan to end their hike.  To get all the info and a list of Shuttle stops within the Park visit their Shuttle Info Page.

Red Bus Tours: These classic vehicles are a symbol of Glacier National Park and offer a great way to see the park where you don’t have to worry about traffic, the roll back tops offer you a unique view and the knowledgeable guides can tell you all about the Parks history and sites. The Red Busses (also known as “Jammers”) are run by Glacier Park Inc. and they have various schedules and length of trips to meet your needs.  A trip on a red bus should be on your bucket list!

Since the Hidden Moose Lodge has Wi-Fi you can check out all the info on your smart phone or tablet before heading out.  Then ask Kent or any staff member for their personal recommendations, you’re sure to get a different answer from each!

Author: Sarah Stewart

Whitefish Farmers Market adds local flavor to Summer

May 20th, 2013 by kimtaylor

Whitefish Farmers Market is held each Tuesday evening during the Summer from 5-7:30 pm.

Whitefish Farmers Market is held each Tuesday evening during the Summer from 5-7:30 pm.

“You Can Eat the Scenery” is the motto of the Whitefish Farmer’s Market held each Tuesday evening from May to September in downtown Whitefish.

Since 2005, local farmers, artists, food vendors and musicians make this a fun, family activity enjoyed by locals and tourists alike.  Pick up organic produce from local farmers who can tell you about their farm-straight-to-you fresh fruits & vegetables.  Pick up locally crafted jewelry, jams & jellies, artwork & crafts.  Whitefish Farmer’s Market vendors are vetted that their offerings are locally made making it a unique place to pick up one-of-a-kind souvenirs of your trip to Montana for your friends and family members back home.  No run of the mill “I ❤ Montana” made- in-China coffee mugs here.  Instead you’ll find locally crafted pottery, hand thrown by a local potter who lives and works in Whitefish.

In addition to great local produce, plant starts, baked goods & art, you can pick up dinner too.  Local food trucks sell crepes, pad tai, corn on the cob, kettle corn and handcrafted ice cream (Madagascar Vanilla or Whiskey Pecan anyone?), just to name a few of the offerings.  If you want to bring home dessert, the weekly pie auction allows you to buy a pie with proceeds going to a good cause.  Adding to the laid back atmosphere of the market, are local musicians who entertain the crowd – a different group, duo or single act each week.  From jazz & folk to reggae & rock the variety of musicians who play at the Whitefish Farmer’s Market is as varied as the produce offerings:

Music Schedule for 2013
May 28 – Kelly West (Reggae/Blues)
June 4 – Seventh Worthy (Funko-Politico)
June 11 – Porter Creek (Acoustic trio)
June 18 – Lee Zimmerman (Cello innovator)
June 25 – Dan Dubuque (One man freestyle soul)
July 2 – Sun Raven Band – (Acoustic folk)
July 9 – John Floridis (Missoula based guitarist)
July 16 – Rebop (Jazz trio)
July 23 – Greg Grant (Saxophonist)
July 30 – Jade Merchants (Folk/Country duo)
Aug 6 – Barrel Stove Combo (4 piece Jazz band)
Aug 13 – Fresh Off the Vine (Acoustic trio)
Aug 20 – Tra la Gael (Celtic)
Aug 27 – Brent Jamison (Bluesy/Reggae)
Sept 3 – Donnie & Kleist (Jazz duo)
Sept 10 – Tim Torgerson (Acoustic Indie)
Sept 17 – Moonshine Mountain (Acoustic country rock/bluegrass)
Sept 24 – Nick Spear (Songs in a variety of genres)

Going into its 8th year the Whitefish Farmer’s Market has become a Summer must-do for locals and tourists alike.

2013 Whitefish Farmers Market:

– Dates: each Tuesday from May 28 – Sept 24, 2013
– Times: 5 pm to 7:30 pm
– Location: Central Ave. Downtown, Whitefish between Railroad and Depot Streets
– Cost: FREE!
– Website: www.whitefishfarmersmarket.org

Author: Sarah Stewart

See Kim Run… Run Kim Run!

May 14th, 2013 by kimtaylor

Kim at the start of the 2012 Turkey Trot.  Look for Kim burning up the competition at this year's Whitefish Lake Run.  Watch out Velma!

Kim at the start of the 2012 Turkey Trot. Look for Kim burning up the competition at this year’s Whitefish Lake Run. Watch out Velma!

Whitefish is host to many 5k, 10k and even marathon running races throughout the summer and fall.  These races find participants passing through scenic vistas and quaint small towns on their way to the finish line.  It’s a great way to work off your huckleberry buttermilk pancakes or Grand Marnier French toast while staying at the Hidden Moose!    Plan your vacation around them, so you can stay fit while enjoying the scenic beauty of Montana first hand.  Below is a list of some of the more popular races in the valley: (click on the race name to be taken to the race website)

4th Annual Whitefish WAG Race [May 19, 2013]: This race benefits our local dog park, the Hugh Rogers WAG park, and consists of 1.5 miles, 4 miles and a 15k USATF Certified Race. Each participants receives, short sleeved cotton t-shirt, Pint Glass w/ Run Whitefish & Great Northern Brewery Logo, food & beverages including beer from Great Northern (over 21 only), live music and a chance to win many great raffle prizes from local merchants.  This is a cup-free race to reduce waste.  15k participants get a complementary hydro-pouch.

36th Annual Whitefish Lake Run [June 29, 2013]: This local favorite consists of 5k and 10k races and starts and finishes at scenic City Beach. (10k participants are bused to the start line, but finish at City Beach).  Kids under 12 get $5 off their race registration and dogs are encouraged to participate in the 5k race, (this is Montana after all and we LOVE our K-9 friends.) Register by June 10 to receive a t-shirt.

Glacier Challenge [July 6, 2013]: This is a challenge!  Covering 50 miles of Montana terrain, racers run, pedal and paddle their way on paths, up/down streams, on the lake and along bike paths and some gnarly single track.  You can enter as an individual, with a partner or as a team.   This year’s theme is: “The Wild West is about to get a WHOLE LOT Wilder,”  all proceeds benefit the Flathead Youth Home.

11th Annual Whitefish Friends and Family Fun Run/Walk [August 24, 2013]: Benefitting the Child Development Center and the Shepard’s Hand Clinic this race consists of a 1 mile Family Walk/Run, 5k Run/Walk and a 10k Run.  Discounted family rates and senior rates.  Register by August 6th to receive t-shirt.

Two Bear Half Marathon & Marathon [September 15, 2013]:  “No Wimps” is the motto of this race!  A Challenging course that takes you on single track, a jeep road, elevation gains and losses, and pavement and gives you beautiful views of Whitefish Lake.  It’s a “Bear” of a course, but gaining popularity among marathon racers.  Water stations approx. every 2 miles and Hammer Gel and orange slices available at selected aid stations. Entry fee includes long sleeve shirt, medallion for all official finishers, post-race celebration with food and beverages and an all-day pass for The Wave fitness center.

4th Annual Whitefish Legacy Race [Oct 13, 2013]: This popular favorite consist of 4 different lengths all on a single track, 1.5 mile, 4.5 mile, 10k and 20k races and is a fundraiser for the Whitefish Legacy Partners, a non-profit that has helped to establish & expand the Whitefish Trail.  Participants receive a t-shirt, pint glass for your post-race beers, lunch and snacks and a hydra-pouch for 20k & 10k participants & live music. Another cup-free race.

Whitefish Turkey Trot [November 28, 2013]  A 5k fundraiser benefiting the North Valley Food Bank, this is a no-frills, feel good, burn-some-calories-before-your-Thanksgiving-feast race.  No shirts, no swag but it’ll make you feel less guilty as you scarf a second helping of pumpkin pie.  You are encouraged to bring non-perishable food items to make your halo glow brighter.  Another cup-free race to reduce litter.

You can check out other Montana races at www.runmt.com  Now get out there and run!

Author: Sarah Stewart

Spring Cycling the Going to the Sun Road

April 29th, 2013 by kimtaylor

A welcome sign of Spring cyclists in Montana.

A welcome sign of Spring cyclists in Montana.

High-tech cycling gear not needed.

High-tech cycling gear not needed.

 

Beautiful vistas await intrepid Spring bicyclists.

Beautiful vistas await intrepid Spring bicyclists.

 

When the Going to the Sun Road in Glacier National Park is fully open from West to East, cyclists play second fiddle to cars and the Park’s famous red busses, called Jammers.  During the peak Summer months, this famous scenic road is closed to bicyclists between 11 am and 4 pm. That means you have to set you’re alarm clock pretty darn early to make it up to Logan Pass and back down before 11 am.  Others prefer to hit the “night shift” and start up in the evening after 4pm, others wait for a full moon and cycle up by moonlight.

But, as the locals know, in the Spring time Cyclists have the road to themselves, save for a mountain goat that may wander in front of you (if you’re lucky) or a mama bear and her cubs scurrying up the hillside.

Yesterday we cycled the Going-to-the Sun Road in Glacier National Park, and experienced just about every type of weather you can think of, rain, sleet, a bit of hail, wind and at times sunshine.  We passed about 3 dozen other cyclists on our way from Lake McDonald to the Loop and about 3 miles beyond.

Tips for Spring cycling:

  • Be prepared for any type of weather.  It may look nice and sunny when you leave, but the weather can change quickly.  A windbreaker type jacket is a must, even on a sunny day, as the high speeds you’ll hit on the way down will cool you down quickly.
  • Bring a basic bicycle repair kit.  If you get a flat tire and you’ve got no way to fix it, you’re out of luck.  You’ll be hoofing back to your car. We ran into a stretch of unpaved road from Avalanche campground for a couple of miles, so you never know. A puncture could really ruin your day if you’re not prepared.  That being said, make sure you check that your bike is in good working order, especially your brakes!  You’ll be glad you did as you speed down the road on your way back.
  • Bring water and snacks.  During the Spring don’t count on Park concessions being open, so if you want to not give into your growling stomach and turn around early, throw in a granola bar or two into your bag.
  • Don’t forget your camera and have fun!

    Author: Sarah Stewart

Spring Things-to-Do in the “Off-Season”

April 15th, 2013 by kimtaylor

Cyclists can go where cars can't in the Spring on the Going-to-the Sun Hwy.

Cyclists can go where cars can’t in the Spring on the Going-to-the Sun Hwy.

When the lifts stop running on the Big Mountain for the ski season and before they roar back to life to take visitors zip-lining through the trees in the Summer it is known as the “off-season” here in Whitefish.  Things quiet down, life moves a little slower, traffic is a little lighter and the weather is a tad more unpredictable.  That being said, it can be a great time to visit our area – but you have to make your own fun with some of the more off-the-beaten path activities, take things easy and be prepared for just about any kind of weather.

So if you find yourself wanting to get away from the heat of the South, the noise of city life, or the traffic jams on your daily commute, visit us in the Spring and you can see what the life of a Whitefish “local” is really like, when the skiing stops and the hiking trails in Glacier Park are still covered in snow.

Here are some ideas for fun and sometimes overlooked activities that still go on when the tourists go home:

Visit a distillery, winery, or brewery: Great Northern Brewing Co. has a tasting room less than 2 miles from the Hidden Moose and samples of their many offerings are “on the house”.  Glacier Distilling Co. in Coram and the Glacier Sun Winery in Kalispell also offer tastings of their unique libations.

Visit a museum: You might think museums are just in big cities, but some of the funkier museums are located in small towns across the country and the Flathead Valley is no exception.  Right here in Whitefish is the Stumptown Historical Society Museum located in the Train Depot. Just 15 miles away in Kalispell there’s the Hockaday Museum of Art, Central School Museum and Conrad Mansion (Open May 15-Oct 13)  –  a hidden jewel of a beautifully preserved pre-1900 mansion of the founder of Kalispell, Charles Conrad, complete with over 90% of the original family furnishings.

Get pampered: Perhaps in your day-to-day life you don’t have time for massages & spa treatments – but now you do – you’re on vacation after all!   Take a day out for a mani/pedi, massage or facial at one of the many day spas & salons here in the Valley.  We’re happy to recommend our favorites or visit: www.whitefishchamber.org for a list of options.

Go thrifting: Yea, it’s a thing now – shopping at thrift stores and consignment shops – what used to be the necessity of a broke college student is now “cool” and a great way to find one-of-a-kind unique items and fashion finds. Whitefish has 2 thrift stores and several consignment shops including the Chic Boutique and Copperleaf Consignment.  More thrift stores and consignment shops are to be had in Kalispell.

Hike local trails:  The Whitefish Trail is a great place to get some exercise and the snow will be gone long before the trails of Glacier Park are cleared of the white stuff.  Pick up a trail map and get moving.

Bike: There are many local mountain bike trails less than 10 miles from the Moose, including Spencer Mountain.  You can rent a bike at Glacier Cyclery and hit the road.  Here’s a local’s tip – Bike the Going to the Sun Road before it opens to car traffic.  In mid-May to early June (perhaps earlier depending on the weather) the park service has the Going-to-the-Sun Road closed at Avalanche Creek to car traffic but beyond that point bikes are allowed and the road can be cleared to the Loop and beyond before you run into plow crews trying to clear the road.  The road offers spectacular views and you won’t have to worry about cars.  For road status call: (406) 888-7800 or see it at: http://home.nps.gov/applications/glac/roadstatus/roadstatus.cfm

See how things are made: Montana Coffee Traders gives tours of their roasting facility and as mentioned in a previous blog post Whitefish Pottery gives tours of their facility to curious visitors who want to pull back the curtain to see how artists get their hands dirty to make beautiful pottery.

Those are just a few of the things you can do in the “off-season” here in the Flathead Valley and I didn’t even get to mention: Seeing live music and theatre, antiquing, gambling, fishing or just bellying up to the bar at a local joint to get recommendations on things to do and see from a friendly barkeep who lives here year-round.

Spring is also a great time to get great rates at the Hidden Moose Lodge since it’s our “off season” too.  See our Specials & Packages page for more info.  Then give us a call at: 1 (888) 733-6667.

Author: Sarah Stewart