Pack train arrives March 23 on University of Montana campus
A pack train of mules will amble into the University of Montana at noon Tuesday, March 23 with the mission of raising awareness of summer course offerings.
The meet-the-mules event – a first for UM – will run for an hour, and members of the media and public are welcome to attend. This appearance of the U.S. Forest Service Northern Region Pack Train is sponsored by the UM Summer Office, the College of Humanities and Sciences, the Department of Political Science and the University Center.
Based at the Ninemile Ranger Station outside Missoula, the mules represent the Forest Service to the public in Montana, Idaho and North Dakota through education, community service and work projects. Led by pack train manager Casey Burns, 10 head of stock will circle the Oval and stop for a brief packing demonstration in front of Main Hall. UM administrators will welcome the pack string to campus.
The event supports the mission of the UM Summer Office by raising the visibility of University summer programming and course offerings to support the success of pre-collegiate, college-level and non-degree-seeking students. Among other classes this summer, students can learn about “Wilderness Policy and Packing” (May 18-June 4) and go on a five-day “Wilderness Pack Trip” (June 28-July 3) into the Bob Marshall Wilderness with Dr. Eva-Maria Maggi.
“Summer is a great time to take advantage of experiential learning opportunities, and this is a fantastic course for not only UM students, but students around the nation and the globe to learn about wilderness policy in one of the most beautiful places in the world,” said Director of UM Summer Grace Gardner.
Scholarships for the pack trip are made available by the Backcountry Horsemen of Montana, Montana Wilderness Association and UM’s Department of Political Science.
This University of Montana Summer Kick-Off event also is an opportunity for students, staff and the public to learn about other UM summer courses and offerings from UM’s Wilderness Institute, College of Humanities and Sciences, Phyllis J. Washington College of Education, Alexander Blewett III School of Law, College of the Arts and Media, Missoula College and other UM colleges, as well as the Wild Rockies Field Institute.
The event has been approved by the Missoula County Health Department. Masks are required on UM’s campus, as well as maintaining a six-foot distance.