The Perfect Outdoor Classroom

This fall, we're excited to begin hosting student field trip groups at our Rock Creek Confluence Property. The Montana Natural History Center (MNHC) will be using the Confluence Property as a site for their Visiting Naturalist in the Schools program, which teaches science through nature to area fourth graders. The Visiting Naturalist in the Schools program is yet another example of the partnerships between Five Valleys and educational organizations that continue to bloom as restoration at the Confluence progresses.

The Confluence is perfectly poised to host student groups like these young naturalists. Just 25 miles from Missoula, it's easy to get to. The 70 acres on the east side of the property have been open to the public for over a year now, and this fall the Missoula College's Heavy Equipment Operation Program will be working to install a parking lot on the larger west side. But best of all, the Confluence provides an example of a living, breathing landscape, and one that Five Valleys is working to restore it to desirable habitat.

“This is a great spot for us because it’s close enough to Missoula where we can access it pretty easily,” said Drew Lefebvre, a teaching naturalist with the Natural History Center. “It’s a great opportunity to show students there are still beautiful wild places, even when you’re surrounded by civilization.”

Five Valleys is thrilled to be educating the next generation of land stewards, whether that be through Montana Natural History Center programs, continued work with Missoula College, partnerships with the Clark Fork Coalition, or through hosting a UM Bird Ecology Lab bird banding station again next year. The Confluence really is a perfect outdoor classroom, and one we are so honored to make open to our community.

Read more about our partnership with the Montana Natural History Center at the Confluence Property in the Missoula Current.

Header photo by Five Valleys staff


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