Category Archives: Mountains & Trails

Going big and going home – The first ascent of the Pisce Wall

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About a year ago, my friend Tom mentioned that there was an alpine wall way back in the Beartooth Wilderness that not only had not seen an ascent, but had no name.  He had done a reconnaissance trip in 2009 to see what this thing looked like and exactly what it would take to get back there.  He told me about a 20+ mile approach, much of which was off trail and through swamps, down timber and difficult orienteering.  Apparently, other parties had tried to access the wall from different locations, but all had been skunked.  Often called the Phantom Wall or the Secret Wall, the details were undeniably intriguing.  Tom’s pictures showed it to be steep, littered with cracks, and beautiful.  I had to at least see it.

My enthusiasm grew, which only stoked Tom’s interest in an attempt. Once we persuaded Tom’s brother Pat to come along (an easy sell), our team was complete.  Pat’s experience with dreaded offwidth cracks rounded out our skill set and  and set us up to handle anything this mountain could throw at us.  Since August typically has a short weather window, we decided that a week in the middle of the month … READ MORE >


Posted in Mountains & Trails, Mystery Ranch Employees, Trip Reports | 6 Comments

Alex Lowe – The Greatest Mountain Athlete Of All Time

Alex and Jennifer Lowe skiing toward the north face of Notch Top in Rocky Mountain National Park in 1982.

Words by: Jennifer and Max Lowe

Alex Lowe was a Montanan who arrived on the national climbing scene in the early eighties with a voracious appetite for climbing in all disciplines. He became known as the “Jack of all Trades” and “The Fiend”, climbing big walls and difficult free routes as well as forging steep ice and notable alpine ascents around the globe. Alex was known to be fast, bold and somewhat of a visionary in developing the direction of mixed climbing and technical ice routes. In the spring of 1999 he was called, “the world’s best climber” by Outside Magazine. He died in October 1999 at the age of forty, buried by an avalanche in Tibet.

Jennifer – The North Face of Notchtop was one of hundreds of adventures that Alex and I shared in the mountains during our first years together. Our Kletterwerks packs accompanied us as we explored the US and traveled to Europe, Alaska and South America to climb. In later years Alex went on to climb on every continent and we settled in Bozeman where he worked as a professional athlete and guide and I settled into parenting and a career in art.

Jennifer Lowe-Anker, READ MORE >


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FEATURED POST

Camp Patriot Celebrates Its 6th Annual Rainier Summit Bid

Camp Patriot 2012 Summit Challenge

 

Tim and I summited Mt Rainier in July of this year with 2 men wounded in war.  One had a prosthetic leg above the knee, the other, 2 carbon fiber braces supporting his legs that had been violently destroyed.  They summited a 14,000 foot peak, whose average summit success rate is somewhere below 40.  Not an easy challenge, let alone doing it with 1 leg.

I had the opportunity … READ MORE >

Posted in Military & Tactical, Mountains & Trails, Mystery Ranch Employees, Rants Exclusives, Trip Reports, Uncategorized | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

Athlete Steve Popovich 2011-2012 Ski Edit

Big Poppy

Athlete Steve Popovich shreds. Hard. Watch his full 2012 season edit here!… READ MORE >


Posted in Mountains & Trails, Skiing, Trip Reports, Uncategorized | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Monumental Elegance

Bridger Jacks Moon3
Featuring: Trance XXX

The desert has always inspired me with its clean crisp air and the stark contrast between the iron red dirt and cerulean sky.  A time in my life existed where I would go to places like these for weeks at a time, climbing and soaking in the surroundings, while living virtually on pennies.  Though it was a simple existence, it burned into my memory as a time of focus and reflection- – a period when I could breathe unobstructed by the constrictive ways of modern life.  When each morning you would wake to the sunrise screams of Peregrine Falcons echoing  from high sandstone walls, and observe the almost defiant way the desert sirens its guests in with an unnameable beauty, and stillness.  Recently I had the chance to visit some of these places again with my friend Justin Griffin, a strong and talented climber from Bozeman with a lust for life.  We had a week to soak up the sun, climb, and maybe get a chance to breathe.

Stop 1: City of Rocks

Eager, with the car ride taking a toll, we decided to stop for a quick pump in Idaho’s City of Rocks.  Granite sport climbing seemed a great … READ MORE >


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6500 In A Year

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BY: MARCUS HOCKETT

After winning the Mystery Ranch 6500 in the BAYED contest on On Your Own Adventures Forum – Hunt Talk, I’ve been trying to give this pack the workout it deserves.

Immediately, this pack became my go-to pack while shed hunting and bear hunting in the spring and carrying the spotting scope and other goodies.

Over the summer I took it everywhere with me.  The 6500 carried my gear deep into trail-less areas several times, on quests for cutthroat and golden trout.

Trying to get away from the crowds while paddle-fishing on the Missouri, I got a chance to haul out my first critter for the pack.

The pack even got to come to work with me a few times. Working on the Charles M. Russell NWR, I helped dig out a 75 million year old Elasmosaur fossil.  I packed in bags of plaster and five gallon water jugs for the crew using the NICE Frame and Load Sling.  I even packed out the skull of the beast encased in rock and plaster. It was the heaviest load I’ve ever carried.  The pack did great!

August through November the pack never went more than a few of days … READ MORE >


Posted in Backpack Hunting, Mountains & Trails, Trip Reports, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Freeskiing World Tour Photos

Poppin new Saddle Peak colors...

Congratulations to the winners of the 2012 Freeskiing World Tour in Revelostoke!  Here are a few shots from our very own Meg Haywood Sullivan. Thanks again Meg.  For full coverage, follow this link:

http://espn.go.com/action/freeskiing/story/_/id/7429572/kye-petersen-angel-collinson-win-revelstoke-freeskiing-world-tour&Asf

The next stop on the tour travels to our neck of the woods.  Good luck to everyone at round 4 of the tour, at Moonlight Basin, Montana.READ MORE >


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FEATURED POST

Immersion

Immersion means more days in the field, which yields more opportunity to mingle with elk, to learn from the elk, and perhaps to release an arrow.  And so I immerse myself in elk.  They have me captivated.  Every day that I scout, photograph, and hunt elk, I learn something about them and their behavior.  One thing learned is one thing gained, and that gaining is how I define success.

On the evening of September 23, … READ MORE >

Posted in Backpack Hunting, Mountains & Trails, Rants Exclusives, Trip Reports, Uncategorized | 7 Comments

Who do you call?

Mikes Elk 2

By Tom Foss

Mike drew a prime moose tag this season, and he was out scouting some new country. At first light, he saw a fine herd of elk, but his main goal was to find one of the big bull moose he knew hung out in these hills.  Eight hours later, just before dark, he decided to wander a ways over toward the elk – four miles to be exact. A couple of cow calls, and suddenly a satellite bull was in his lap. He released an arrow at 35 yards, the razor-sharp broadhead did its work, and he heard the young bull hit the ground.

It was late and dark with no cell service. He hurriedly gutted his elk in prime grizzly country, and grew rightfully nervous on the hike out. With the smell of blood on his hands, he jumped at every shadow.

He remembered the landowner’s words when he asked for permission: “Have at it son, but watch out. There is an ornery griz in there. He chased us in our quads and almost ran our hired hand through a barb wire fence.”

He’d spilled the guts and the meat was cooling, and as he headed … READ MORE >


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Perfect Moments of Shred

Be there: The VAST GAllery, 410 N. Broadway, Bozeman. Next to the Bozeman Brewery.

When: Thursday, September 19th, 7 to 11 p.m.

Why: Mystery Ranch is proud to sponsor “Perfect Moments of Shred,” a photo fundraiser for the Aaron Robinson Plant a Seed Foundation. The night of snowboarding-inspired photographs will be a celebration of the life of Aaron Robinson, a Montana-based snowboarder who died while snowboarding in Chile this summer.

The show will feature a curated collection of iconic photographs from the snowboard world that have never been available for public purchase, until now. This limited edition series features work by the following internationally respected photographers: Jeff Curtes, Tim Zimmerman, Andy Wright, Mike Yoshida, Jenna Low, Scott Serfas, Oli Gagnon, Liam Gallagher, Colin Wiseman Scott Sullivan, Frode Sandbech, Reid Morth, Matt Georges and Chris Owen.

Proceeds from the event will Benefit the Aaron Robinson Plant a Seed Foundation, a Whitefish Based non-profit started after Aaron’s untimely death, which will help carry out Aaron’s dream of providing underprivileged children the opportunity to experience a passion and love for snowboarding.

READ MORE >


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