Green University® LLC Presents...
June 2 - 8, 2018
Upper Missouri Canoe Trip and Carp Hunting
with Thomas J. Elpel and friends | Toston, Montana
Canoeing, camping, and hunting carp with bows and arrows is one of our favorite early summer activities. In 2016 we paddled the amazing Tongue River in southeastern Montana. In 2017 and 2018 we have returned to our usual haunts along the upper Missouri River for some floating and fun. (See a journal and video of our past adventures!).
Starting below Toston dam, we will float down the upper Missouri, camping and hunting carp with bows and arrows along the way. We eat what we kill. Waste is not allowed on this trip! We will also forage for wild foods and practice other primitive skills, such as friction fires, along the way. The journey ends at Canyon Ferry Reservoir.
This canoe trip is not a formal class, but rather a fun adventure that is open to friends and family, members of the Jefferson River Canoe Trail, all Green University students, and neighborhood kids who have previously participated in Ancient Skills Immersion programs through Outdoor Wilderness Living School.
There is no cost to join the adventure, although we would appreciate donations of food or money to cover expenses, and we will likely need drivers to help transport people, canoes, and gear to the river and back.
2018 Dates TBA
Jefferson River Canoe Trip
with Thomas J. Elpel and friends | Twin Bridges, Montana
The Jefferson River Canoe Trail retraces by water an essential segment of the Lewis and Clark National Historic Trail along the entire length of the Jefferson River in southwest Montana.
The Lewis and Clark Expedition towed dugout canoes up the Jefferson River in 1805 in search of a navigable water route to the Pacific. Most present-day travelers prefer to follow the trail in reverse, floating down the Jefferson River in search of fun and fishing. The entire length of the river is Class I water, suitable for beginning paddlers, except during runoff season in spring. We expect to hit the end of the high water season, when water levels are dropping, yet the river is still moving pretty fast.
The Canoe Trail includes a network of multipurpose backcountry campsites on public lands on the Jefferson River. The public may float into these sites for primitive camping along the river. At each camp there are opportunities for such activities as bird watching, mushrooming, hiking, and fishing.
This canoe trip is not a formal class, but rather a fun adventure that is open to friends and family, members of the Jefferson River Canoe Trail, all Green University students, members of the Bozeman Kayaking and Canoeing Meetup Group and anyone else with basic camping skills who would like to come along.
In lieu of a fee for the float trip, we would be grateful for generous donations to the Jefferson River Canoe Trail to support our work to secure additional public campsites along this segment of the Lewis and Clark National Historic Trail.
June 15 - 30, 2018
Marias River Canoe Trip
with Thomas J. Elpel
Canoeing and camping is one of our favorite summer activities. This year we are headed to Montana's Marias River for a whole new adventure!
We will meet at Sanford Park Campground below Tiber Dam at Lake Elwell on June 15 and camp there overnight. The next day, we will shuttle canoes and paddlers upstream to Sullivan Bridge where Cut Bank Creek and Two Medicine River come together to form the Marias River.
The Marias River is 170 miles long, starting with 63 miles of prairie river, followed by 26 miles across the reservoir, a portage around the dam, and then 80 miles of desert badlands. We will enjoy a leisurely paddle down the river, camping, exploring, and foraging for wild foods along the way, plus we will practice primitive skills, such as friction fires and pottery work.
At the "big bend" downstream from the I-15 bridge, we will stop to honor the 200 Piegan Blackfeet Indians, mostly women and children, who were killed in the Marias Massacre by the U.S. Army on January 23, 1870. It was a case of mistaken identity and retribution after Owl Child, a member of a different band of Piegan Indians, allegedly murdered local trader and ranch Malcolm Clarke--whom had previously beaten and humiliated Owl Child. [Read more about the massacre.]
We will leave our vehicles at Sanford Park Campground for the duration of the float, using them as need to portage around Tiber Dam to reach the lower river. Along the lower river we will hike and explore the 5,845-acre Marias River State Park Wildlife Management Area, which encompasses 14 miles of the river. We will exit the river shortly before the Marias merges into the Missouri. This will be a semi-primitive trip with conventional tents and gear. Bring whatever primitive gear you have to substitute or supplement.
This canoe trip is not a formal class, but rather a fun adventure that is open to friends and family, members of the Jefferson River Canoe Trail, all Green University students, and neighborhood kids who have previously participated in Ancient Skills Immersion programs through Outdoor Wilderness Living School (OWLS).
There is no cost to join the adventure, although we would appreciate donations of food or money to cover expenses, and we will likely need drivers to help transport people, canoes, and gear to the Teton River and back.
Canoe Trips & Walkabouts with Thomas J. Elpel
Looking for the adventure of a lifetime? Tom is always thrilled for the chance to get out of the office to go trekking some place new, and he loves taking people out to experience nature on its own terms, often with very little gear. (Be sure to read our camping journals!)
Our canoe trips and walkabouts are not structured like classes, nor is there a fee to participate. It is just something we like to do with friends, family members, students, and pretty much anyone else who is sufficiently physically fit and wants to come along.
You are especially welcome to join us if you happen to be experienced in wildernes survival, nature awareness, and/or tracking skills, and you think you have something to contribute to the experience.
Skills or no skills, just click on over to our Contact Page and send us an e-mail to tell us about yourself, what your background is, and why you would like to join us for one of our outings. Please keep in mind that these experiences are largely unscheduled ahead of time, so you may have days, rather than weeks, to make the necessary arrangements to get here. Also be sure to look at our suggested Equipment List.
Tom occassionally joins wilderness survival treks through other schools as an opportunity to share what he knows, and to pick up new skills and new experiences. He is always open to novel invitations, although exceedingly busy, and thus not always available to come.
Interested in more classes and events?
See our full schedule!
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