Caves and Classes

Caves and Classes

Frost, Melissa
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Now You Know
Have you ever wondered how many antelope there are in Montana? How many people visit Montana state parks? How many fish are reared annually for stocking in Montana rivers and lakes? How many miles of groomed snowmobile trails there are in the state? Now you can find out. FWP's handy Now You Know book is updated and available on the FWP website at fwp.mt.gov/insidefwp/goals. Now You Know is a compilation of facts, figures, and important events in the history of the state’s fish, wildlife, and parks. This web book features an interactive table of contents. Just click on a topic of interest in the table of contents and the document automatically opens to that page. Also of special interest is information on how FWP is structured and who to contact for questions.

Preserving Tradition
Hunting is a way of life in Montana. Big Sky country boasts more hunters per capita than any other state in the nation. Bountiful landscapes, clean water and air, and relatively few inhabitants all make this an ideal place for wildlife and hunters to roam. Big-game populations are at or near record numbers and hunting access is good.

In order to take advantage of these riches, however, you must have a hunting license. To purchase a Montana hunting license, any person born after January 1, 1985 must show a certificate of completing a hunter-education course issued by Montana or any other state or Canadian province. The mission of FWP’s hunter-education program is to perpetuate Montana’s hunting heritage by teaching the knowledge, skills and attitudes necessary for safe, ethical, and responsible behavior. The next round of hunter education classes begin this spring across the state. For more information, visit fwp.mt.gov/education/huntereducation.

Geology in Action
Montana’s first state park, Lewis and Clark Caverns State Park, showcases one of the most highly decorated limestone caverns in the Northwest. These spectacular caves were, and continue to be, shaped by water. The caves are filled with ancient stalactites, stalagmites, columns, and helicitites. Although the park’s namesakes didn’t visit the actual site, they passed very close by along the Jefferson River on their journey.

Two-hour guided tours of the caverns are offered May 1 through September 30. Though the caverns are most definitely a highlight for park visitors, the rest of the 3,034-acre park is open year-round. Hike or bike miles of trails; see black bears, mule deer, and eagles; and explore evidence of how this landscape was shaped by a long-gone shallow sea that left fossilized shellfish exposed on boulders and rocks. With an extensive trail system, campground, three rental cabins, one rental tipi, and a spacious group-use pavilion, Lewis and Clark Caverns State Park is a fantastic outdoor destination for the family any time of the year. For more information visit fwp.mt.gov/parks and click on “Find a State Park.”




Mel Frost is the information and education manager for region 3 of the Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks department.
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