Ski for Stewardship 2024

Help support stewardship and celebrate winter in western Montana during our 2024 Ski for Stewardship Challenge!

Ski for Stewardship Pivot Update: Snow or no snow, we're keeping the spirit alive! Join us for a fun twist as we trade the Skate and Classic Ski Clinics for Dry Land Training Tips taught by owner of MTCX, Shaun Radley, and a Wax Clinic taught by Dawson Knopp. And, with hopefully more snow in the forecast, those of you participating or wanting to sign up for the 100km challenge, should have a great opportunity to get those kms in.

  • Self-Led 100k Ski Challenge (62mi) to be completed between February 1st-14th.
  • Dry Land Training Tips and Wax Clinic on February 14th at 2pm

Registration donation is $25. All registrants are entered to win a raffle for a full skate ski setup (boots, skis and poles) from MTCX! Dry Land Training Tip and Waxing Clinics will be held at the MTCX. Clinics will be capped at 50 participants each will be divided into skill-level groups.

A huge shoutout to MTCX for being our amazing partner in pivoting this event amidst challenging weather conditions!

Go the extra kilometer: tag Five Valleys in an Instagram or Facebook post about your XC adventure.

Not a big social media user? Email your photos to Sophia at and we'll share them for you!

We at Five Valleys talk a lot about stewardship. But what is stewardship?

Conservation and stewardship go hand-in-hand. Conservation is the momentous, one-time act that protects a place. Stewardship is the care that ensures that place will continue to be protected in perpetuity.

Five Valleys currently stewards 86,000 acres of open lands across western Montana. As land passes from one owner to the next, Five Valleys is there to ensure that the land remains healthy and intact. We do this by building strong relationships with our conservation easement landowners, providing them stewardship resources and information, and visiting each of our nearly 200 conservation easements at least once per year.

At the same time, we steward the properties we own-- the Rock Creek Confluence, the Lincoln Community River Park, Marshall Mountain and the Mount Dean Stone Community Forest. These properties enable Five Valleys to provide recreation and educational opportunities for our community, enhance and protect wildlife habitat, complete land restoration projects, and cultivate diverse, equitable public access.

At its core, stewardship is a labor of love. Like you, we feel privileged to call this place home and want future generations to experience western Montana in the same ways we do now. While stewardship is a big commitment, it is achieved through everyday acts, big and small: every time you move a branch off a trail or pick up after your dog on a hike, that’s stewardship. Helping to restore a stream bank? Stewardship. Attend a Hands on the Land volunteer work day and pull weeds? Stewardship. Giving to the organizations that help protect, provide, and manage the lands you love? That’s supporting stewardship.

Where to Ski

Expand your ski horizons and visit some new trails! Western Montana offers a wide range of fun options.

Seeley Lake Nordic Ski Trails

The trails in the Seeley Lake area are managed by the Seeley Lake Nordic Ski Club, and through December 1st-March 31st are ski only. The 18km of trails are groomed regularly and offer loops at varying distances. These trails are free to use, but a donation to Seeley Lake Nordic Ski Club is encouraged.

Directions to Seeley Lake Nordic Trails

General information and grooming report

Echo Lake Nordic Ski Trails

Located in between Philipsburg and Anaconda lie the Echo Lake nordic ski trails at the base of Discovery Ski Area. The Echo Lake trails offer miles of groomed and un-groomed options. These trails are free to use, but a donation to the Echo Lake Trails Association is encouraged.

Directions to Echo Lake Trails

General information and grooming report

Around Missoula

There are several great ski options in Missoula or within a 30-45 minute drive. They include: Pattee Canyon Recreation Area, the UM golf course, Lolo Pass Ski Area, Lubrecht Experimental Forest, and the RattlesnakeRecreation Area. Each of these places has their own guidelines, but many of them are managed and groomed by the Missoula Nordic Ski Club. Please join Missoula Nordic Club, your membership helps support maintenance of these trails.

General information and grooming reports

Huge thank you to our event partner, MTCX, our partners at the Missoula Nordic Ski Club, Seeley Lake Nordic Ski Club, and Echo Lake Trails Association for their tireless love and stewardship of the XC ski trails that enable our community to get outside and enjoy our landscape throughout the year. Stewardship has long been baked into the heart of the Nordic ski culture. Club volunteers groom trails before dawn, clear downed trees, and organize events. Love your local Nordic trails? Please respect local rules and guidelines, and consider joining, supporting, or volunteering for one of these fantastic local clubs.

Header photo courtesy of Five Valleys staff


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