Is it more enjoyable to hike, ride, or run on trail you helped build? We think so! Find out for yourself by volunteering to help build the House of Sky Trail on Mount Dean Stone in celebration of National Public Lands Day!
This workday, hosted by Five Valleys, MTB Missoula, Montana Trail Crew, Montana Conservation Corps, and City of Missoula Parks & Recreation will celebrate our public lands and help to lay the route for this new 4.6-mile trail along the Mount Dean Stone ridge. We will be digging trail, raking gravel, and completing other necessary work. Afterward we will celebrate the workday and our public lands with beverages and treats.
We will meet at Skyline Ridge at the top of Deer Creek Road at 9:00am (shuttle and self-driving directions below). What to Bring: Close-toed shoes, work clothes, gloves, and safety glasses or sunglasses (some of the digging is rocky and shards can fly). Please also bring your own lunch and a water bottle. We will have water available to refill bottles as needed. There have been some bees and wasps in the area lately, so if you are allergic please bring appropriate medical supplies. Please leave your furry friends at home.
Given the recent rise in COVID cases, we are being abundantly cautious. Please bring a mask or face covering and expect to work socially distanced.
Timeline: We will depart the Lewis and Clark Park and Ride at 8:30am. Both shuttle and self-driving volunteers will meet at the Skyline Ridge trailhead at 9:00am and then hike to the worksite. We will work from 10:00am - 12:00pm, then each lunch (BYOL - bring your own lunch!). Afterward, we will celebrate with Big Sky Brewing Company beverages and cookies. We will return to the Park and Ride around 2:30pm.
Shuttle info: If you would prefer to ride a shuttle van, we will have vehicles leaving the Lewis and Clark Park and Ride at 8:30am (view map). If you would like to utilize this shuttle service, please reserve your spot during registration. While riding the shuttle, we ask that you wear your mask during the duration of the drive. Once at the saddle, all volunteers will hike 30-40 minutes to the trail work site.
Directions if Driving Yourself: On some devices, Google Maps has been trying to route people through gated roads- make sure you continue driving past the Pattee Canyon Recreation Area parking lot, continuing onto the dirt road toward Deer Creek Road. About 1 mile after Pattee Canyon Drive turns to dirt, take a right at the switchback onto West Fork Deer Creek Road (#2127), and continue uphill about 3 miles to the top of the ridge. View Google Maps self-driving route.
While it is under construction, the House of Sky Trail route is closed. Please help us build the best trail possible and refrain from exploring this area outside of our workday. With your help, we hope to open House of Sky to the public in 2022. In the meantime, check out the new 5-mile Mount Dean Stone Preserve Trail.
Header photo of National Public Lands Day 2019, photo by Geoff Sutton