First Day Hike Events Coming to Montana State Parks
By Moosetrack Megan


(Helena, MT) – Montana State Parks (stateparks.mt.gov) invites the public to welcome in the New Year with First Day Hikes at Montana State Parks on January 1, 2018.

Start your New Year off on the right (or left) foot with a “First Day Hike” at your local state park.  Montana State Parks will offer First Day Hikes at five locations across the state. Explore history, view winter landscapes and wildlife, and let the fresh air rejuvenate you. These 1 to 3-mile, easy to moderate hikes are the perfect means for individuals and families to welcome the coming year in the outdoors, exercising and connecting with nature.

‘First Day Hikes’ is an annual, nationwide special event sponsored by America’s State Parks. Last year nearly 55,000 people, from all 50 states, rang in the New Year, collectively hiking over 133,000 miles throughout the country on the guided hikes.

Montana State Parks First Day Hike Events:

All hikers should dress appropriately for the weather, bring a water bottle, and wear sturdy boots. Foot traction devices (e.g. YakTrax) are recommended.

Bigfork
Flathead Lake State Park at Wayfarers – January 1, 2018; 10:00am
Join a Park Ranger to get outside, exercise, enjoy nature, and welcome the New Year with friends and family.  This moderate 1 to 2-mile guided hike will explore some of the seasonal changes in the landscape at the park. A water bottle, sturdy hiking boots, and weather appropriate clothes are suggested.  Leashed dogs welcome.   For more information, call the park ranger station at 406-837-3041.
Address: 8600 MT Hwy 35, Bigfork
Directions:  http://stateparks.mt.gov/wayfarers/

Glendive
Makoshika State Park – January 1, 2018; 11:00am
Meet at the visitor center and enjoy a hike along the Bluebird Trail. Learn about the park’s unique geology, wildlife and history. Lunch will be provided following the hike. No dogs, please. For more information, call the visitor center at 406-377-6256.
Address: 1301 Snyder Ave., Glendive
Directions: http://stateparks.mt.gov/makoshika/

Helena
Spring Meadow Lake State Park – January 1, 2018; 10:00am
Join park staff for a short interpretive hike around Spring Meadow Lake. Learn the history of the park, view wildlife, and enjoy hot chocolate and snacks following the hike. Dogs welcome on a leash. For more information, call Park Manager Craig Putchat at 406-495-3270.
Address: 2715 Country Club Drive, Helena
Directions: http://stateparks.mt.gov/spring-meadow-lake/

Kalispell
Lone Pine State Park – January 1, 2018; 5:00-6:30pm
Participants can enjoy guided and self-guided hikes throughout the park. Look for wildlife, view the city lights from the overlook and enjoy a bright fire and hot drinks by the picnic shelter. Hikers should dress appropriately for the weather. Snowshoes or foot traction devices, trekking poles, headlight or flashlights, water bottles and thermoses are recommended. Some snowshoes will be available to borrow from the park while supplies last. Sleds can be used to tow small children. Dogs are welcome on leash. For more information, call Park Manager Brian Schwartz at 406-755-2706 ext. 3.
Address: 300 Lone Pine Rd., Kalispell
Directions: http://stateparks.mt.gov/lone-pine/

Lolo
Travelers’ Rest State Park – January 1, 2018; 11:00am
Meet at the visitor center for an easy hike through the Travelers’ Rest State Park trail system. Look for winter wildlife such as American Dippers, Belted Kingfishers, mule and whitetail deer, and racoon. For more information, call the park visitor center at 406-273-4253.
Address: 6717 Highway 12 W, Lolo
Directions:  http://stateparks.mt.gov/travelers-rest/

Three Forks
Missouri Headwaters State Park – January 1, 2018; meet between 10 & 11am, hike starts at 11am
Start your day around a warm fire with bagels and hot chocolate then join park staff at 11am for a tour of Fort Rock where you can take in amazing views of the rivers and surrounding mountain ranges.  Not recommended for children under 8 years old. No dogs, please. For more information, call Park Manager Dave Andrus at 406-285-3610.
Address: 1585 Trident Rd, Three Forks
Directions:  http://stateparks.mt.gov/missouri-headwaters/

For more information about First Day Hikes visit:
http://www.stateparks.org/initiatives-special-programs/first-day-hikes/

Visit Montana State Parks (stateparks.mt.gov) and enjoy camping, hiking, fishing, swimming, boating and more and discover some of the greatest natural and cultural treasures on earth.






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