We fell in love with the state of Montana. It was good that we still had one month on our USA-visa : we could take our time exploring this wonderful area.
We decided to rent a little forest Cabin in Bear Creek near Ennis. It was great to change our habits for some time : making fires in the little stove, feeling like trappers in the middle of nowhere. Hiking, we stumbled upon huge Grizzly tracks. It’s funny how imagination runs fast when you see something like that. We decided to walk back quickly to our safe cabin, singing and talking as loud as possible, our bear-spray ready at hand.
Weeks later, we met a very nice couple who used to work for the National Forest Service around that area. They told us a scary story about a friend of theirs who got attacked by a Grizzly there. He made a video just after the attack, which got viral on YouTube. For the people who might be worried, this kind of thing almost never happens. Ticks can be far more dangerous than Grizzlies 🙂
Our next stop was Helena National Forest. Covering 984,558 acres (3,984.36 km2), the forest is broken into several separate sections, all around the city of Helena. It is a true haven for nature-lovers, hikers, fishermen, and of course wildlife, which is incredibly diverse. Grizzlies and black bears are present in certain areas (like almost everywhere in Montana). Wolves, bobcats, mountain lions and lynx are also living there but rarely seen. Elk, moose, deer, bighorn sheep, mountain goats are more numerous and more likely to be seen. Along streams and lakes, bald eagles and other raptors such as ospreys are becoming more common thanks to the protection of their environment.