After years of planning, and months of excitement, Five Valleys and our partners built some of the first trails on Mount Dean Stone this past weekend, for National Public Lands Day.
Over 75 hardworking volunteers, along with partners from REI Missoula, MTB Missoula, CIty of Missoula Parks and Recreation, and the Montana Conservation Corps, worked to build the Barmeyer Loop, named for the Barmeyer Family that donated the easement the trail lies on. Five Valleys transferred management of the parcel to the City of Missoula last December.
Even though it was a rainy September day, volunteers armed with shovels, rakes, pulaskis and a love of our open lands worked for several hours to scratch out this important new section of trail. The Barmeyer Loop will one day connect to Pattee Canyon at the yet-undeveloped Barmeyer Trailhead and will lead up the South Hills Spur.
“[The Barmeyer Loop Trail] starts down in Pattee Canyon and will come up and do a loop through the property,” Morgan Valliant, Missoula's conservation lands manager, told the Missoula Current during the workday. “Our hope is to have this area open to the public by spring."
As of now, the Barmeyer Loop section is not open to the public because the necessary connections are not complete. The City plans to start working on the section of trail that will connect the Barmeyer Loop to the South Hills Spur and eventually to the northwest slope Mount Dean Stone, near the Stone Mountain neighborhood, in 2018.
A tremendous thank you to our hardworking volunteers and our great partners for helping to make the workday a success!
To learn all about the greater Mount Dean Stone project, which is seeking to add over 4,200 acres to Missoula's open space, visit our Mount Dean Stone project page.
All photos courtesy of LJ Dawson