Hiking at Pine Butte Guest Ranch

I heard rain on my cabin roof throughout the night and was glad it was raining then. Maybe we’d see clear and sunny skies in the morning. It was not going to happen that way though. This landscape can always use a good soak so I hesitated to complain. And, I didn’t!

During breakfast, management and staff were busy making Plan B for the day. I always say that the true test of good management is how a business responds when a little adversity is tossed their way. And, Pine Butte Guest Ranch rose to the top in this situation.

Options for the day were given and I chose a hike with the staff naturalist. Having a naturalist on staff is one of the attributes that sets Pine Butte apart from some of Montana’s more traditional guest ranches.

We did hikes in several directions that day. Our naturalist made an already great and scenic hike all the better with ongoing information about plants, trees and area wildlife. I began to realize my knowledge of flora and fauna was limited and I found the information fascinating.

Our late June visit was turning out to be a perfect time for wildflowers. Mountainsides seemed to be covered in arrowleaf balsamroot, one of the few plants I know.

The guests in my group covered a wide geographic area of the United States, with several from the midwest, several from the east coast and also the west coast. This terrain was new to them and I enjoyed seeing their awe at what we sometimes take for granted in Montana.


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