This year for Christmas we decided to do “experience” gifts…we were each supposed to plan a “winter” outing.  My “winter” outing was watching cattle dog herding trials (maybe not really a winter activity, but it took place in January, so I think it counts).  Doug’s activity was snowshoeing.  We’ve done both of these so here are the updates!

The Cattle Dog Trials were at Belgrade, the town near the airport, at the Saddle Creek Equestrian Center.  We didn’t really know what to expect.

Here is a link to the facebook page for the National Cattledog Association.

Also, if you forgot Brodie does have some experience herding…here is our link to his sheep herding video.

The cattledog trials were very interesting!  The cattle had a lot of attitude, and even fought back – the dogs were so tough!  We really got to see the border collie stare; sometimes it worked, and sometimes it didn’t, but either way it was very cool.

We saw one dog get stepped on pretty badly, but I think she was okay, and there were definitely a few other close encounters.

My favorite was the “nursery” competition…these were border collies that had to be under 30 months, and some of them looked very small compared to the cattle, but they were not intimidated!  As soon as they brought the cattle out those little baby border collies perked right up!  It was what they were born to do, and they knew it!


The handlers getting their instructions…it was a close knit group! Everyone knew each other.


This guy was just sitting in the front seat like a good boy!


There is a little glare because we were watching from inside – that Border Collie is not messing around!


Waiting for the cattle to come out…


A couple good looking dogs waiting outside.


This was the viewing area…


Doug saying hello to another border collie…he looked really smart (the dog) – like he was trying to understand what Doug was saying.


Border Collies everywhere!


Here is the prize! I’m not sure if this is a belt buckle or not – I sure hope so!

It was a very fun way to spend the afternoon!


Doug’s planned winter activity was snowshoeing, which we ended up doing in Yellowstone National Park up near Mammoth.  It was actually a very snowy and windy day (though not too cold).   We rented the snow shoes from MSU in Bozeman for the weekend.

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It was a nice activity to do outside in the cold!  Moving around kept us warm, and the snow and the wind made it fun.  There are lots of great trails around Yellowstone, but we left Brodie back at the hotel so we did the one that was easiest and closest, and luckily we only saw one bison.


At the top of Mammoth Hot Springs


The upper loop at Mammoth – you can see the cross country ski tracks.


It looks cold, but as long as you bundle up it isn’t so bad. In fact, once you get moving and walking, it gets pretty warm!


The ski & snowshoeing trail (the loop we were on) is actually just the road that goes around the Upper Terrace loop. In the winter, they groom the snow for winter stuff.


Overlooking the valley and Mammoth Hotel below






Everything was covered with snow like you’d imagine. And the wind made the snow form cool shapes.



There is the one lone bison that we saw.

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So, it’s a little hard to tell, but the four images below show the snow getting whipped around by the wind. You’ll just have to take our word for it that it was seriously windy.


And, you deserve a beer and a snack after a 1.4 mile hike. We caught the last 15 minutes of lunch service at the Mammoth Hotel Dining Room.


The beer was cold and the Mediterranean platter was great. Go there.


The CRV looks like a Montana native with all that winter dirt and grime all over it.


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One thought on “Winter Activities….

  1. Wow! Wow! Wow! You guys end up doing so many cool things. I think we should all plan different and unusual outdoor activities here in Georgia! Got to look into this. Thanks for everything you posted! Love the three of you! Dave

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