In Western Montana, outside activities change with the seasons. In the spring, there is often still snow in the mountains. The snow melts away with rising temperatures, and the new grass sprouting will soon blanket the hillside, resembling a manicured lawn. Strolling around the property you can be the first to see the beautiful wildflowers, the earliest begin blooming in April, with "peak bloom" happening in May. Bears have come out of hibernation and the deer and elk begin having their babies around the 1st of June, a great opportunity for wildlife viewing and photography. Down at the reservoir, largemouth bass start their spawn as the water warms up. Noxon Reservoir is nationally known for bass fishing, so don't forget your fishing pole. Best of all, the summer visitors have yet to arrive.
*Click on each image for more pictures.
Hiking: Walk a mile in your own shoes.
Exploring on two wheels: Bring your bike or use one of ours.
As Summer heats up, your activities can move up into the mountains. Whether taking a leisurely hike around the property, or a more strenuous hike into a high mountain lake, you can leave your busy life behind and feel rejuvenated. Many gated forest service roads create outstanding mountain biking trails. Kayaking the tranquil waters of the Noxon Reservoir is a wonderful way to show your body what it's been missing all winter long. Don't forget your camera or binoculars.
Many nearby streams and high mountain lakes with native cutthroat trout and rainbow trout.
Serenity is paddling a kayak on flat, open water.
The Noxon reservoir is nationally known for largemouth bass. Also smallmouth bass, walleye, and enormous northern pike.
The first weekend in August brings the "Big Sky Blues Festival" in Noxon (20 min. drive from TOBC). For 2 1/2 days some of the finest musicians in the Northwest converge on the banks of the Clark Fork River, complete with a beer garden and camping. August also brings on the huckleberries. If you've never tried one, nutritionally they are similar to a blueberry, taste wise, they are in a league of their own (bears think so too). The second weekend in August is Trout Creek's "Huckleberry Festival," their only annual celebration, complete with a parade, 5K and 10K run, music, and lots of vendors at the local fair grounds. If you're into exploring, there are literally thousands of miles of forest service roads to cruise within an hours drive from TOBC. If you're into scenic highway driving, you're 1/2 hour from Bull Lake cutoff hwy, an hour to Lake Pend Oreille and Sandpoint Idaho, and 2 1/2 hours to Whitefish and then on to Glacier Park. No matter which season you choose to visit TOBC, you will witness the beauty of God's creation at your own pace and in your own company.
Put on your hiking shoes, grab your fishing pole and camera.
September through October is my personal favorite time of year here. What few people were here for the Summer have gone. There are very few boats on the reservoir leaving the water "flat" for kayaking, but it is still warm enough for swimming. Hiking trails and high mountain lakes are almost deserted and the fish are hungrier than ever. The first part of September brings on the "rut" for the majestic elk. Sometimes in the mornings and evenings here at TOBC the calmness is interrupted by the haunting sound of a bull elk bugling, challenging his adversaries or trying to gather his harem of cows. If you're lucky enough to hear this ritual, it can be a once in a lifetime experience.
Bring your own, rent a pontoon boat, or charter our boat for an afternoon.
Swim at our private dock or a number of public areas on the reservoir.
Photography: If you forget your camera, turn around.
We do not permit hunting on our property but there are many public grounds to hunt.
So much to see and do, so little time.
October brings on the most drastic color changes with the Western Larch and Quaking Aspen turning brilliant gold as other deciduous trees and bushes range from orange to bright red. Nights can be cold and we are reminded that snow may not be too far off. Rifle hunting season runs from the 3rd weekend in October through Thanksgiving weekend and for locals, it is the most anticipated time of the year. Elk, whitetail deer, mule deer, moose and bear are all hunted locally, so if you're here at that time, it is advised that you wear a "hunters orange" hat, coat, or vest. Big game animals are seen far less frequently, but it is still a magical time to be here. While we don't allow hunting on our property, there are thousands of acres of public ground to hunt nearby and you can be on a public trail just a 10 minute walk from the cabins.
Bring your skis during winter months to cruise the property.
We've got the hill, if you have the legs.
With the absence of artificial light from the city, the stargazing is truly captivating.
It is safe to say, that whatever time of year you visit TOBC you should find plenty to do. If you're into sitting on your own deck sipping coffee in the morning or a nice glass of wine in the evenings, that might be exactly what your soul needs to be refreshed.