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PHOTOGRAPHS: Johnson's Homegrown, Mission Mountains Wilderness "Rewilding"

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Welcome to the website of the Seeley-Swan Pathfinder.
The Pathfinder is the award-winning weekly newspaper serving the communities of Seeley Lake, Condon, Swan Valley and the Blackfoot Valley of Montana.

Highlights from the August 21, 2014 issue

- Bigge Crane Megaload Moving Through Area

Montana Department of Transportation (MDT) issued a permit to move one of three megaload modules destined for Calumet Refinery in Great Falls, Mont. The load was in Idaho and entered Montana on MT 200 the morning of Aug. 19.

- Johnson’s Homegrown - Roots that Run Deep

Every Sunday Johnson’s Homegrown owners Jesse and Chuad Johnson offer fresh vegetables, berries, bedding plants and flowers at the Seeley Lake Farmers and Crafters Market.
On their 8-acre family farm west of Missoula, Mont., the Johnsons and their family plant, grow and harvest everything they offer.

Federal, state, and county wildland fire agencies will rescind Stage I fire restrictions, effective Saturday morning, Aug. 23 at 12:01 a.m. At that time, restrictions on campfires and smoking outdoors will be rescinded. County bans on debris burning, including burn barrels, will remain in place.

- Stage I Fire Restrictions Rescinded in West-Central Montana

Missoula — Fire officials with the Missoula County Fire Protection Association (MCFPA) have moved the fire danger to “High” Tuesday, Aug. 19.

- 19-year-old Killed Near Clearwater Junction

The Montana Highway Patrol (MHP) responded to a single vehicle fatal accident, Aug. 17 at 3:45 a.m. at mile marker 25 on Montana Highway 200. James Christopher Clingan, a 19-year-old from South Carolina, was dead on arrival.

- Medical Center Expansion Begins

The expansion of the Seeley-Swan Medical Center officially began Monday, Aug. 18. The contractor for the project Quality Construction from Missoula, Mont. started breaking ground and removing the back walkway. The target completion for the project is expected within six to eight months.

- Seeley Lake Sewer District
Assessment Approved, Mapping Postponed

The Seeley Lake Sewer District Board approved the annual assessment to fund the district at a special hearing Aug. 13. At the hearing, the district managers postponed mapping of properties until next spring.

- Death Notice - Joseph H. "Bud" Phelps

- Recreationists Unite to Maintain Common Ground

One of the great things about Seeley Lake is that it’s a Place for All. People from our community work very hard to make sure that everyone, locals and visitors alike, have the opportunity to get outside and enjoy our big beautiful backyard. Rather than fighting over trails, we work together to make sure the world is open to hikers, bikers, trail runners, horseback riders, snowshoers, dog walkers, hunters, ATV’ers, dog sledders and snowmobilers.

- Service Denies Wolverines Protection Under Endangered Species Act

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) announced Aug. 12 that it is withdrawing a proposal to list the North American wolverine in the contiguous United States as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act (ESA).

- Montana Invited to Celebrate Liz and Art Aug. 26

The community is invited to a celebration of Liz Claiborne and Art Ortenberg, Montana’s neighbors and friends, Aug. 26 at Seeley Lake Elementary (SLE) from 5 – 6:30 p.m. There will also be a “Common Ground” Conservation Tour starting at 2:30 p.m. leaving from SLE.

- Psychological Perspectives, Ken Silvestro - Dreams: Doorways to Your Unknown Psychology

- Comments Sought on State Park Grant Requests  

Montana State Parks ( is seeking public comment on 2015 Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV) grant application funding requests. Comments are due by Wednesday, Sept. 10 at 5 p.m.

- Bicyclists Take to the Trails Saturday Mornings

One of the groups you will find meandering out on the Seeley Lake dirt roads and trails in the summer are mountain bike enthusiasts who like to see our country from a bike seat. Many riders are from other countries traveling the great divide trail. Some are racers and some are people who simply like to tour our country at a different pace than other forms of travel. All of them are getting out in nature and enjoying spectacular views.

- Shooting Range Improvements Near Completion

The Wilderness Sportsman’s Club (WSC) in Seeley Lake completed major improvements this summer at the shooting range at the north end of the Seeley Lake Airport off of Cottonwood Lakes Road.

- From Road Kill to Compost

Concerns about road killed wildlife and domestic carcass disposal prompted the Blackfoot Challenge and Montana Department of Transportation (MDT) to partner. In 2006 they built a gated and bear-proof compost facility at mile marker 31.1 on Montana Highway 200 near Clearwater Junction.

- Missoula Elections Office Offering Fall Election Judge Training

Missoula County Elections Office is still 30 percent short of reaching their election judge recruitment goal. The office has set the bar a little higher this year to provide additional support staff at the Elections Center at the Missoula County Fairgrounds and allow for more half day (8 hour) shifts on Election Day. Training for new election judges will be held the first week of September.

- Free and Reduced-Price School Meals

Seeley Lake Elementary School announces the 2014-15 policy for Free and Reduced-Price School Meals for students whose schools participate in the U.S. Department of Agriculture [National School Lunch Program and School Breakfast Program]. The complete policy is on file in the central office and may be reviewed by any interested party.

- Community Briefs

Temporary Closure on South Lost Creek Road; Saturday Evening Holland Lake Program: Bat Walk with Matt Bell; Men’s Bible Fellowship Starting in Seeley Lake This Fall; Seeley Lake Library ; Montana Bird Dog Photo Contest - Enter to Win; Removing Pets from Traps - FWP Video; Missoula County Sheriff’s Department Call Activity 8/12/14 – 8/17/14

- Off the Beaten Path - Celebrating 50 Years of Wilderness - Keeping the Wild in Wilderness

“To me wilderness ethics are simple. Leave things as they are,” said Flathead National Forest (FNF) Recreation Specialist Michael Downs.
Mission Mountains Wilderness Rangers Kari Gunderson, Luke Lamar, FNF representative Downs and 13 other volunteers gathered Aug. 16 in the Jim Lakes Basin, within the Mission Mountains Wilderness. The group was there to remove florescent orange spray paint markings on rocks and vegetation and other trail markings on a non-system fisherman’s trail. This “malicious act of vandalism,” as Gunderson refers to it is only one of the battles wilderness rangers face to keep the wild in wilderness.

Visit the Seeley Swan businesses
with links below.
Their sponsorship
makes this website possible.
Blackfoot Valley Dispatch
(Local news source for Lincoln, Ovando, Helmville and Canyon Creek)

CLB Custom Landworks
(Landscaping, Tree Care and Fencing)

Clearwater Montana Properties, Inc.
(Proudly partnering with Cabela Trophy Properties for Real Estate Sales)

Double Arrow Resort
(Historic Lodge & Golf Course)

Great Bear Properties
(Real Estate Sales in Seeley Lake)

Lindey's Prime Steak House
(The Place For Steak & Burgers on the Bay!)

Montana Loon Society
(Supporting Montana's Common Loons)

Prudential Montana Real Estate
(Real Estate Sales in Seeley Lake)

Pine Hills Outfitters
(In Canada and US)

Swan Mountain Outfitters
(Outdoor Recreation Services
and Exclusive Lodging)

Swan River Valley Real Estate
(Real Estate Brokerage)

Swan Valley Centre Cabins
(Vacation Lodging in the Swan Valley)
Johnson’s Homegrown offers a colorful assortment of vegetables, berries, bedding plants and flowers at the Seeley Lake Farmers & Crafters Market every Sunday and at the Clark Fork Market every Saturday.
to the Seeley Swan
Copyright 2014 Pathfinder LLC PO Box 702, Seeley Lake, MT 59868, 406.677.2022.
All rights reserved, no photograph, writing or other material may be used without prior permission.
Please enjoy select archived articles, Passages columns, Swan Songs (obituaries) and Eye on The Environment columns from local organizations. Links to these offerings are available on the left side of this page.
Also at the left you will find links to local area information and our site sponsors and other potentially interesting or useful websites.

* Disclaimer: This website is undergoing a revision so you may find new as well as very old pages!
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Please email comments, letters or other matters to:
This website is maintained by
Andi & Nathan Bourne, Editors and Publishers,
Seeley-Swan Pathfinder,
PO Box 702,
Seeley Lake, Montana 59868.
Phone 406.677.2022.