2010 Post-Conference Tour Itinerary

 

EXCLUSIVE opportunity ONLY on

SEJ's Sunday, October 17 - Wednesday, October 20 post-conference tour!

 

July 7, 2010. Several pieces — including a price break — have just fallen into place that have transformed this year's post-conference tour to Glacier National Park and the Crown of the Continent into a truly extraordinary event.

SEJ has secured exclusive use of one of the most historic lodges near the park, the Belton Chalet. Normally the chalet is closed for the season in October, but hotel owners will be opening just for us. There will be no TV, radios or phone here — just a slice of the way the region was back in 1910, when the Chalet opened.

We'll also have two nights at a private ranch run by the Boone & Crocket Club, and are pleased to offer a private session with the range master on the ranch's skeet-shooting range.

Best of all, a generous donation has allowed us to reduce the price of this year's post-conference tour of Glacier National Park and the Crown of the Continent to $350 per person, a $50 savings.

The bottom line: SEJ is offering conference-goers an extraordinary tour this year to a unique place, with exclusive access to areas and activities you could never arrange on your own. Spots are going quickly, and we invite you to take advantage of the opportunities this trip offers.

This is an all-inclusive package — meals, lodging*, transportation, park access, guns and ammo! — to one of the last intact ecosystems in the Lower 48. You'll get a behind-the-scenes look a wild, remote, rugged landscape. Glacier Park may be the marquee attraction, but over the course of three days we'll give you a sense of why this region's health and beauty depend on so much more than the million-acre park.

We'll leave Missoula Sunday after the morning authors' session, arriving in time for a brief stroll and dinner at the Boone & Crocket Club ranch about 90 miles south of Glacier Park. This 6,000-acre working cattle ranch lies on the Rocky Mountain Front, abutting thousands of acres of national forest and wilderness areas and protecting critical habitat for elk, cougars, bighorn sheep and grizzly bears. It's a perfect laboratory to study the coexistence of agriculture and wildlife.

Monday we'll spend the morning hiking the property, talking to ranchers, Native Americans and conservationists about the region and the challenges in keeping the ecosystem intact. Monday afternoon will find us on the skeet-shooting range, where a private session with the range master will hone our shooting skills.

Tuesday we're up early and off to Many Glacier Valley in the national park. This famed valley is on the park's remote east side, a place most tourists never see. We won't guarantee a bear sighting, but sheep, goats and other wildlife abound, and we'll have park naturalists and others on hand to help explain the landscape.

Our final night will be spent on the west side of the park, at the historic Belton Chalet. The lodge marks its centennial this year, opening its doors in 1910 as the first in what was to be a series of grand hotels funneling wealthy railroad passengers from the east to Montana's mountain vistas. While it has evolved over time — and was restored in 2000 — it still stands as a hallmark to a simpler, quieter, more luxurious time.

Wednesday we'll travel back to Missoula down the scenic Swan River Valley, a wild and beautiful jewel in the continent's crown. We'll stretch our legs with a short hike into the Swan Mountains to talk about — and maybe glimpse — moose, elk and wolves.

We urge you to reserve your place soon. The crown of the continent is a region unmatched in the United States for its wild splendor and beauty. We hope you'll join us for what we expect will be a signature post-conference tour. 

Your tour co-leaders,

Dan Pletscher, professor and director, Wildlife Biology Program, Department of Ecosystem and Conservation Sciences, University of Montana

Douglas Fischer, editor, DailyClimate.org, Bozeman, Mont. (If you need more information, please call Douglas, 406-219-3816, or drop him an email.)

* Note: Accommodations include comfortable, Western-style bunkhouse lodging on Sunday and Monday nights, followed by one night of single room lodging in the historic chalet.

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