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A River Runs Through It: Fly Fishing in Big Sky Country

Program Number: 20674RJ
Start and End Dates:
9/15/2013 - 9/20/2013; 9/14/2014 - 9/19/2014;
Duration: 5 nights
Location: Big Sky, Montana
Price starting at: $975.00 - Price may vary based on date, departure city
Program Type: Outdoor Adventures, Misc.; Natural History; National Parks
Meals: 15; 5 Breakfasts, 5 Lunches, 5 Dinners    
Meal Options: Vegetarian    

Intermediate anglers with some experience will cast their lines into the world-renowned freshwater trout streams of Big Sky country while learning about river ecology and riparian corridors. As you fish amid the unspoiled landscapes surrounding Montana’s Gallatin River and the Firehole River in Yellowstone National Park, a local naturalist interprets the importance of these streams within the Greater Yellowstone ecosystem.




Highlights

• With the help of experienced angling instructors & guide, become proficient with fly-casting in a blue ribbon river.
• A field day to Yellowstone Park includes natural history interpretation, the opportunity to fish Firehole River and a visit to Old Faithful.
• Move from the river to the kitchen as a nationally acclaimed chef teaches you to prepare trout as part of a gourmet dinner.



Activity Particulars

Walking up to two miles carrying fishing gear, lunch, water, other needs for time on the river. Uneven, slippery, rocky, brushy terrain and moving water. Fishing two to four hours each afternoon. Elevations up to 7,365 feet.



A four-day, out-of-state Montana fishing license and a three-day Yellowstone fishing permit are included in the program price. The group will fish in Yellowstone on Day 5, so the 3 day Yellowstone permit will allow participants the opportunity to fish in Yellowstone the two days after the program is over. Participants will have the option to purchase extended licenses for Montana and/or Yellowstone National Park



Coordinated by University of Montana Western.




Big Sky

Located 18 miles from Yellowstone National Park, Big Sky straddles Gallatin and Madison counties — a detail that leaves the region without a town status or town government. Nestled at the base of Lone Mountain, Big Sky is an ideal location for skiing, snowboarding and outdoor recreation.



Accommodations
Bucks T-4 Lodge, a full-service resort and culinary destination amid magnificent natural surroundings.
Meals and Lodgings
   Buck's T-4 Lodge
  Big Sky, Montana 6 nights
 Buck's T-4 Lodge
Type: Lodge
  Description: Bucks T-4 Lodge is nestled in the Gallatin Valley between the Gallatin and Madison mountain ranges where Lone Mountain at 11,166 feet, provides a stunning backdrop. The blue ribbon Gallatin River carves its way through the valley just east of the lodge. Buck’s T-4 Lodge has been a Big Sky tradition for over 50 years. Visitors to Yellowstone, Big Sky and Moonlight Basin ski resorts and the Gallatin Canyon experience unparalleled hospitality and the genius of Buck's cuisine. Their welcoming atmosphere, nationally acclaimed restaurant, hearty breakfast and many amenities make them the natural choice for lodging in Big Sky. Because the meeting rooms, restaurants, lodging, and entertainment options are all contained within Buck's Lodge the guests have easy access to everything they need with the added benefit of the magnificent surrounding landscape.
  Contact info: 46625 Gallatin Rd
Gallatin Gateway, MT 59730 USA
phone: 406-995-4111
web: www.buckst4.com
  Room amenities: Guest rooms have either two Queen beds or a Queen and a couch. All rooms are equipped with free wireless Internet, iPod docking stations, microwave/refrigerator, satellite TV with 3 HBO channels, direct-dial phones with voicemail, coffee maker, hair dryer and iron.
  Facility amenities: Guest amenities include two restaurants with historic bar, free wireless Internet, two huge outdoor hot tubs, and a patio with an outdoor fireplace. Buck's also has a beautiful outdoor Garden with waterfalls and native landscaping, which provides a stunning atmosphere for a relaxing evening. Guests can start each day with Buck's complimentary full breakfast. Buck's T-4 Lodge also features over 5,000 square feet of meeting space in one of Montana's most picturesque locations. Buck's rustic log decor sets the stage for superb evening dining featuring Montana steaks, wild game, seafood, and more. They have an award-winning wine list, which features over 250 selections and is recognized by Gourmet, Wine Spectator and Bon Appetit. Buck's Pub features casual dining with a unique flair and the adjacent game room with pool tables and video games offer evening entertainment. Free wireless high-speed Internet access is also available in the Pub and bar. There is also a whitewater rafting company with climbing wall and bike rentals on property. Guests can access the free local bus route.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Additional nights prior: varies For seasonal rates call Buck's T-4 Lodge for information at 406.995.4111
  Check in time: 4:00 PM
  Additional nights after: varies For seasonal rates call Buck's T-4 Lodge for information at 406.995.4111
  Check out time: 11:00 AM


Travel Details
  Start of Program:
Registration at Lodge between 4-5 pm You will be staying at Buck's T-4 Lodge that night.
  End of Program:
11:00 am airport shuttle and independent departure You will be staying at Buck's T-4 Lodge the night before.
  Required documents:
The Road Scholar Health & Safety Form is required. A 2 day Montana fishing license, a 3 dayYellowstone National Park fishing permit and park entrance fees are include in the program price. Those participants who would like to fish beyond the program can purchase an extended out of state Montana license or Yellowstone fishing permit. For more information please contact Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks at fwpgen@mt.gov or call (406) 444-2535. Please bring Golden Age or National Park Pass if you have one.
  Parking availability:
Plenty of parking at no charge.
Transportation
To Start of Program
  Location:  Big Sky, Montana
  Nearest city or town:  West Yellowstone and Bozeman
  Nearest highway: US Route 191
  Nearest airport:  Bozeman
  From End of Program
  Location: Big Sky, Montana
    (Additional transportation information same as above)
Travel Details
 

Bozeman, MT

 

From Airport

 
 

Service:

 

Commercial Van/Shuttle
Greater Valley Taxi
phone: 406-388-7938
Advanced Reservations Required

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

Group rate approximately $55.00 per person: Call for current rates
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

Allow 1 hour 

 

Distance:

 

45 miles

   

Reservations must be made at least three days in advance; call (406) 388-7938 for rates and reservations. You may be asked to leave a message. Group shuttle departs airport at 1:30 pm. In order to take advantage of the group shuttle rate, your flight must arrive before 1 pm on Sunday and depart after 2:00 pm on Friday. Arriving in Bozeman a day early or staying an extra day may be more economical than booking individual transportation.

 

Bozeman, MT

 

To Airport

 
 

Service:

 

Commercial Van/Shuttle
Greater Valley Taxi
phone: 406-388-7938
Advanced Reservations Required

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

Group rate approximately $55.00 per person: Call for current rates
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

Allow 1 hour 

 

Distance:

 

45 miles

   

Return shuttle must be arranged at least three days in advance; call (406) 388-7938. Group shuttle departs site at 11:00 am. Outside of the above scheduled times, individual transportation (not at group rate) can be reserved through Greater Valley Taxi (406) 388-7938 or Karst Stage (406) 556-3540 (72 hours notice required). Car rental and drop-off are available at the Bozeman airport; drop-off is not available in Big Sky.

 
Driving Directions
  Billings, MT Travel west on I-90 toward Butte for 140 miles. As you reach Bozeman, MT you will merge onto US-191 S via EXIT 309 toward Bozeman/West Yellowstone and travel for approximately 10 miles. A left turn onto Gallatin Rd/US-191 will take you south. Stay on US-191 for 35 miles until you see Bucks T-4 Lodge on your right.
  Idaho Falls, ID Take US-20 E toward Rigby/W. Yellowstone for 105 miles (Crossing into Montana). Turn left onto Canyon Street/US-287/US-191. Continue to follow US-191 to 47 more miles. In route you will quickly pass through Yellowstone National Park, so don't blink or you will miss it.
  Missoula, MT Travel on East on I 90 approximately 190 miles. After passing the small towns of Three Forks and Manhattan take EXIT 298 toward MT-291/Belgrade/MT-85/W Yellowstone/Airport. Turn left onto Amsterdam Rd/MT-347 and take the 1st right onto Jackrabbit Lane/MT-85 S. If you are on the Alaska Frontage Road and reach Yukon Lane you've gone about 0.2 miles too far. After traveling about 6.6 miles Jackrabbit Lane becomes Gallatin Rd/US-191 and continues south. Buck's T-4 Lodge will be on you right after winding along the beautiful Gallatin River for about 35 miles. Your destination is just past Running Iron Road. If you reach Cummings Lane you've gone a little too far.
Elevation Note: Site elevation 6,125'. Fishing takes place at elevations ranging from 6,125' to 7,365'.

Equipment Requirements: Participants should bring their own fly fishing gear: rods, reels, flies, vests, boots etc... Limited equipment for rental available on site. Additional information provided in pre-arrival materials.
The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.


Daily Schedule

Day 1: Welcome Dinner and Orientation
(Sunday, September 15)

Note: A two-day, out-of-state Montana fishing license and a three-day Yellowstone fishing permit are included in the program price. The group will fish in Yellowstone on Day 5, so the 3 day Yellowstone permit will allow participants the opportunity to fish in Yellowstone the two days after the program is over. Participants will have the option to purchase extended licenses for Montana and/or Yellowstone National Park.



   
 Arrive To: Welcome to Buck's T-4 Lodge located near the Big Sky area, located near the blue ribbon Gallatin River.
 Dinner: Experience the genius of Buck's T-4 cuisine at the welcome dinner.
 Evening: Orientation and introductions.
   
Accommodations: Buck's T-4 Lodge
Meals Included: Dinner

Day 2: Rivers and the Yellowstone Ecosystem/ Fly Casting and Fishing Fundamentals
(Monday, September 16)
   
 Breakfast: Full hot breakfast at the Lodge.
 Morning: The morning classroom presentation includes overview of Greater Yellowstone ecosystem. Instructors will also provide an overview of the stream and river ecology and the significance of the riparian habitat. This will include the important role that the streams and rivers play in the Yellowstone Ecosystem. The health of the Yellowstone ecosystem is vital as it contains the headwaters of so many rivers. It will be important to understand that in Yellowstone, bald eagles, osprey, pelicans, otters, grizzly bears and other wildlife take precedence over humans in utilizing fish as food. Fishing regulations will be understood as providing the necessary guidelines of maintaining an ongoing healthy ecosystem. A casting clinic by experienced fishing guide and instructor will fill out the morning.
 Lunch: Lunch at the Lodge
 Afternoon: Beginning and less experienced anglers will take take their casting practice to the next level as the experiential learning continues. Anglers will have the opportunity to cast their line in a pond or the river under the direction of fishing guide.
 Dinner: Dinner at the Lodge.
 Evening: Evening presentation about the wonders of Yellowstone and surrounding area considers topics which may include, but are not limited to, geology, human history, thermodynamic features, ecology, predator/prey relationships, riparian habitats and how this all influences the Yellowstone Ecosystem.
   
Accommodations: Buck's T-4 Lodge
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 3: The Blue Ribbon Gallatin River
(Tuesday, September 17)
   
 Breakfast: Hot breakfast at the Lodge
 Morning: Instructor will demonstrate fly tying and discuss various materials used and the flies appropriate for local waters. Fly casting fundamentals will be reviewed.
 Lunch: Lunches at the Lodge
 Afternoon: The anglers will continue honing their casting skills as experienced fishing guides take the group to the waters of the Gallatin River. Instruction on the river will highlight the afternoon as participants cast their lines into blue ribbon waters. Casting and fishing fundamentals will be directed by the instructor and guide as needed while on the river.
 Dinner: Dinner at the Lodge
 Evening: Optional movie "A River Runs Through It" includes scenes filmed on the Gallatin River across the street from the lodge. Participants can choose to spend the evening fishing on their own.
   
Accommodations: Buck's T-4 Lodge
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4: Cooking with acclaimed chef and guided fishing trip on the Gallatin River
(Wednesday, September 18)

Note: Participants may opt out of kitchen experience and choose optional full day guided fishing trip and pay half day up-charge. Please contact University of Montana Western Road Scholar at (406)683-7302 to make arrangements for full day guided fishing.



   
 Breakfast: Hot breakfast at the Lodge
 Morning: Anglers will now become student chefs as we move to the kitchen. The participants will learn how to prepare the trout. The group will join nationally acclaimed chef and winner of James Beard Foundation Award for Excellence as he demonstrates his cooking expertise and then allows his new students to help prepare a gourmet dinner they will never forget. *Those that opt out of the kitchen experience and choose optional full day guided fishing trip will leave in the morning and pay half day up-charge.
 Lunch: Lunch at the Lodge
 Afternoon: Back to the Gallatin River for a half day with fishing guides to further develop a personal relationship with the beautiful waters.
 Dinner: Dinner at the Lodge
 Evening: Free Evening
   
Accommodations: Buck's T-4 Lodge
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 5: Field day to Yellowstone National Park for fishing opportunity and geyser basin exploration.
(Thursday, September 19)
   
 Breakfast: Hot breakfast at the Lodge
 Morning: Travel to Yellowstone National Park includes on board interpretation and time to savor the beauty of early fall's imprint on the high country. When arriving in the park, anglers will enjoy a morning fishing opportunity on the Firehole River.
 Lunch: Sack Lunches in the field
 Afternoon: Exploration in the Old Faithful area is an occasion to put your five senses to work and experience all four examples of thermal features - fumaroles, hot pools, mudpots and geysers. Walk the Old Faithful Geyser Basin, explore historic Old Faithful Inn or spend time at the Visitor Center.
 Dinner: Dinner at Old Faithful
 Evening: Evening return to the Lodge takes advantage of the crepuscular hour and possible wildlife sightings.
   
Accommodations: Buck's T-4 Lodge
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 6: Final Presentation and Review Wrap Up
(Friday, September 20)
   
 Breakfast: Hot breakfast at the Lodge
 Morning: A possible early morning fishing excursion and a recap from the instructor/naturalist on the learning adventure, summarizing your recently gained knowledge and putting the whole venture in perspective. Goodbyes and check-out. Airport shuttle departs 11 am. Best to schedule flights after 1:30 pm.
 Lunch: Grab-n-go sack lunches to take on the road
   
Accommodations: Buck's T-4 Lodge
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch
Important information about your itinerary: Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the information featured on this website. Itineraries are based on our best information at this time. Circumstances beyond our control may require us to adjust itineraries or other details. We regret any inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your understanding. Information will be sent to you from your Program Provider approximately three weeks prior to the program start date. The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.

Suggested Reading List


A River Runs Through It


Author: Norman Maclean


Description: Lean, penetrating lyrics of words describe a time and a life based in Norman Maclean’s childhood experiences. Descriptions of life, of fly fishing in Montana’s Big Sky country along the Big Blackfoot River is an exquisite blended word painting of land, water and family. Come fish in the Rockies and read this novella which begins: In our family, there was no clear line between religion and fly fishing. We lived at the junction of great trout rivers in western Montana, and our father was a Presbyterian minister and a fly fisherman who tied his own flies and taught others. He told us about Christ's disciples being fishermen, and we were left to assume, as my brother and I did, that all first-class fishermen on the Sea of Galilee were fly fishermen and that John, the favorite, was a dry-fly fisherman.



The Bloody Bozeman: The Perilous Trail to Montana's Gold


Author: Dorothy Johnson


Description: Part of the Western Trail series, The Bloody Bozeman showcases some of the American West’s most colorful personalities, memorable events and personal stories of the men and women who emigrated to Montana over this trail and others. The author reviews the creation of the Bozeman Trail in 1862 and traces events along its length from 1863 through 1868. The bloody Bozeman Trail through Wyoming and Montana was known for the violence and peril that shadowed it as travelers faced hostile Indians, hard climates, outlaws and solitude. This historical book describes how the trail developed, why it was used, who utilized it and why the Army abandoned the forts it had established along the trail. Dorothy Johnson, a true storyteller touches on the other gold fields of early Montana, Road Agents, Vigilantes and Frontier Justice.



Bozeman and the Gallatin Valley: A History


Author: Phyllis Smith


Description: The author states that this is the story of those who traveled through, or later settled in, the Gallatin Valley region in successive migrations for perhaps as far back as thirty thousand years. She reviewed newspapers, memoirs, letters and other sources to put together this narrative history of Montana’s fertile Gallatin Valley and its urban hub, Bozeman. The Treasure State’s Valley of Flowers comes to life through beautifully written text illustrated with some 300 photographs, etchings and maps. Subjects ranging from famous frontiersmen, agriculture, transportation, crime and recreation to geology, notorious events and architecture reveal a rich and colorful past.



The Last Best Place, A Montana Anthology


Author: William Kittredge & Annick Smith, editors


Description: This anthology preserves Montana's rich literary heritage from myths and stories of the earliest Native American inhabitants to works of contemporary authors. Read accounts written by early explorers and visitors including Lewis and Clark, Osborne Russell and James Audubon and by miners, cowboys and settlers. This literature that has been birthed in the Last Best Place - diaries, essays, legends, journals, tall tales, poetry - reflects the remarkable nature of the Treasure State.



The Big Sky


Author: A.B. Guthrie Jr.


Description: The first of several novels of the Big Sky country; it was designated the "best novel of the American West" by the Western Literature Association. Its sequel, "The Way West," won the Pulitzer Prize. The Big Sky chronicles the fur trade era; you'll want to read the rest. You'll enjoy A.B. Guthrie, Jr.'s. fine style of writing.



Windows into the Earth: The Geologic Story of Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks


Author: Robert B. Smith and Lee J. Siegel


Description: Find out about the forces that shaped and continue to shape the Greater Yellowstone-Teton region. Illustrations and driving tours of both parks help visitors enjoy and understand the Earth's creative forces in this wondrous region.



Yellowstone and the Great West: Journals, Letters and Images from the 1871 Hayden Expedition


Author: Marlene Deahl Merril, editor


Description: Daily record of Ferdinand Hayden's historic 1871 scientific expedition to the Yellowstone basin. This expedition's findings influenced Congress to establish Yellowstone as the world's first national park. The expedition made many scientific discoveries as well as producing the earliest on-site images of Yellowstone by photographer, William Henry Jackson, and guest artist, Thomas Moran.



Montana, A History of Two Centuries


Author: Michael Malone, William L. Lang & Richard B. Roeder


Description: "Montana: A History of Two Centuries" first appeared in 1976 and immediately became the standard work in its field. This book can be described as a "definitive" one-volume history of Montana. Written primarily to serve as a testbook for college-level history courses, this is a comprehensive, balanced, and detailed overview of Montana's fascinating history. All three authors knew the state extraordinarily well, and clearly loved its past. In this thoroughgoing revision, William L. Lang has joined Michael P. Malone and Richard B. Roeder in carrying forward the narrative to the 1990s. Fully twenty percent of the text is new or revised, incorporating the results of new research and new interpretations dealing with pre-history, Native American studies, ethnic history, women's studies, oral history, and recent political history. In addition, the bibliography has been updated and greatly expanded, new maps have been drawn, and new photographs have been selected.



Streams: Their Ecology and Life


Author: C.E Cushing & David J. Allen


Description: This is a handbook that combines a discussion of the ecology of streams and rivers in layperson language, with an illustrated field guide of the plants and animals found in running waters of North America. Various illustrations and maps accompany the text. The authors are extremely well known--Cushing is the lead content provider for an America On-Line service provided through Trout Unlimited entitled Ask Dr. Cushing. He is frequently asked the sorts of questions that are answered in this field guide. J. David Allan is the author of a well known textbook in Aquatic Ecology.



The Caddisfly Handbook


Author: Dick Pobst & Carl Richards


Description: A convenient and thorough guide with a handy Fisherman's Simplified Key to identifying all the major caddis varieties east and west of the Mississippi.



Water: The Fate of Our Most Precious Resource


Author: Marq de Villiers


Description: In his award-winning book WATER, Marq de Villiers provides an eye-opening account of how we are using, misusing, and abusing our planet's most vital resource. Encompassing ecological, historical, and cultural perspectives, de Villiers reports from hot spots as diverse as China, Las Vegas, and the Middle East, where swelling populations and unchecked development have stressed fresh water supplies nearly beyond remedy. Political struggles for control of water rage around the globe, and rampant pollution daily poses dire ecological theats. With one eye on these looming crises and the other on the history of our dependence on our planet's most precious commodity, de Villiers has crafted a powerful narrative about the lifeblood of civilizations that will be "a wake-up call for concerned citizens, environmentalists, policymakers, and water drinkers everywhere".





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