Outdoor Study: winter in Glacier National Park
December 16, 2008
If you'd like to learn more about wildlife in winter, Glacier National Park offers a perfect classroom.
The wildlife course titled "Stories in the Snow" is offered by The Glacier Institute on Saturday, Jan. 24 and March 7, 2009. This course focuses on forest carnivores that remain active in winter, such as the lynx, fisher, pine marten, mountain lion and wolverine. Students will learn to interpret the tracks, signs and stories these species and their prey leave behind. This snowshoe expedition will head into Glacier National Park's wildlife-rich Middle Fork of the Flathead River. The three to four mile roundtrip scouting hike reveals a variety of footprints, offering glimpses of wildlife activity that normally go unseen.
The course will be led by Brian Baxter, a wildlife researcher and project coordinator for Silver Cloud Associates, a natural resource information company based in Libby. He has a B.S. in Wildlife Biology from Western Carolina University and is a member of the Western Forest Carnivore Committee. Baxter has been involved in forest carnivore research in North America for fifteen years.
The Glacier Institute serves adults and children as an educational leader in the Crown of the Continent ecosystem with Glacier National Park at its center. Emphasizing outreach and field based learning experiences; the non-profit Institute provides an objective and science-based understanding of the area's ecology and its interaction with people. Marking its 25th year of educational programs, The Glacier Institute is a long-time partner with Glacier National Park and the Flathead National Forest. The Institute offers family programs, youth science adventure camps, Discovery School at the Big Creek Outdoor Education Center and adult educational programs.
Register for the "Stories in the Snow" course or request a complete catalog by calling (406)755-1211 or online at www.glacierinstitute.org. Courses are rated for skill level; the "Stories in the Snow" course is rated at "moderate" and is suitable for ages 12 and up. The $65 fee includes the use of snowshoes. Teachers may apply for OPI credit upon completing this course.