Top 10 Things To Do Before Summer Ends
By Riley Polumbus
Just like a roller coaster ride, summer ends way too soon! It’s more than a week into August—yet there’s so much more I want to do with my summer. That means it’s list time. It’s the best way to ensure I make the most of what’s left. I highly recommend you make one too. May I make a few suggestions? Don’t mind if I do!
1. Ride bike from the mountain to town. This is the first summer our mountain bike trails have connected to The Whitefish Trail. Needless to say this has been a popular activity for local bikers as well as savvy out-of-towners. You can ride the S.N.O.W. (Shuttle Network of Whitefish) Bus to the mountain with your bike, have a friend drop you off or work out a shuttle via Facebook (search for Bike Shuttle to Whitefish Mountain Resort). Make your way to the Bob Cedar Trail in our “Multi-Use Zone.” There are several ways to get there depending on where you start so be sure to pick up our trail map.
2. Hike the Danny On. This is the most popular trail in the Flathead National Forest and there are a few reasons why. The trail winds through forests of larch, spruce and fir, across wildflower covered ski runs, and offers several vistas of the Flathead Valley before its upper portions lend a view of Glacier National Park. Gain 2,353 feet in elevation as you hike 3.8 miles one way with the option of two extra sections. There’s also the option to hike one way, and take a Scenic Chair Ride for the other. If you prefer a hiking destination where there are some people around, the Danny On is a perfect trail. Plus we have other amenities, such as a bar and restaurant where you can treat yourself to a beer or a milkshake when you reach the summit.
3. Learn to Bike Downhill. This summer the Whitefish Bike Park has been jamming big time. There’s no doubt that this is due to the graduates from our Learn to Bike Downhill beginner package who are now ripping in the park. You can too someday if you take advantage of the deal: $109 gets you equipment rental (downhill bike, full-face helmet, and knee/shin and arm pads), lift ticket and a 2-hour lesson. You will learn the fundamentals of the sport while riding our lower mountain trails that were specifically designed for developing skills. Reservations recommended, call 406-862-1995 to save your spot.
4. Fly like a bird on a Zip Line Tour. Nothing says, “Memorable summer activity” quite like zipping over ski slopes and forest on side-by-side lines with family or friends. The 6-Zip Tour gets you over a mile of flight. It’s a guided tour with some hiking so you’ll be ready for a cold one at the end. Must weigh between 60 and 230 pounds. Reservations recommended, call 406-862-2900 to book your tour.
5. Find a cold, secluded lake and jump in. This is one that’s on my list every summer—mostly because you can discover a new one to visit every summer. Drive to it, hike to it, bike to it. Bring your SUP or kayak, dogs, friends, picnic and make a day of it, or spend the weekend.
6. Have a beach day (say like around sunset at City Beach, Les Mason, Lake McDonald…). I personally have a couple check marks next to this one. That’s because my friends and I like a good place for happy hour that involves snacks, bevies, dogs and kids. Naturally a good beach along one of our lakes makes everyone happy.
7. Support the S.N.O.W. Bus by attending Summer Brewfest. One of the best amenities of our community is the FREE S.N.O.W. Bus. One of the best ways to have fun and raise money is to try a lot of craft beer. Save the date: Saturday, August 25, 3-5 p.m. at Depot Park in downtown Whitefish. Adult 21+ tickets are $20 in advance – and $25 at the door. Under 21 and designated driver tickets are $5 and come with complimentary water and soft drinks.
8. Give someone the purple peace sign (pick hucks). A true sign of summer are the purple fingers we get from picking our region’s favorite crop. Some gather gallons of huckleberries to make jams, pancakes, smoothies, top on ice cream, you name it. Other folks are the more casual picking type, they will eat as they go—a tasty snack to get them through the day. Whichever you are—huck harvester or bear impersonator—be sure to say hello to your fellow picker in the forest with a nod and the peace sign.
9. Spend some quality time on The Bierstube’s deck. If you do # 1, 2, 3, 4 or 8, you should stop by The Bierstube and check out the new bar on the deck. Order a cold drink, maybe a burger or bento box, then kick back and enjoy the view while you reminisce about last winter, and think about how in a few months the snow will fall again.
And that brings us to the last one on the list:
10. Buy your pass. 2018/19 Winter Season Passes are on sale now. If you want to take advantage of the lowest pricing, be sure to buy your pass by September 30. The best way to celebrate the end of a great summer is to treat yourself to an awesome winter!