Brett French reports: Bears, boulders and art
By angelamontana

Posted: May 20, 2022

Just south of the community of Bridger in south-central Montana is an area known as Weatherman Draw. The low foothills, canyons and sandstone cliffs contain one of the highest concentrations of pictographs and petroglyphs in the region. Hiking into the country there’s no telling what explorers may find, including depictions of shield-bearing warriors. Hence another name for the region, Valley of the Shields. One such ancient painting includes two bears emerging from a hole, representing their awakening from hibernation. Bears carried symbolic importance for the Native Americans who painted the rock and their hibernation was seen as a link to the “Land Beyond” where immortals dwell. To learn more about the depictions and the area, check out my story at

Written by Brett French | Outdoors Editor for the Billings Gazette