I’ll take this opportunity to let you know a few things I look forward to when cruising around Missoula. In the interest of space, I’ll stop at ten and won’t overwhelm you with my entire list. These are current favorites and are listed in no particular order, so no drum roll, please. Also, most are relatively inexpensive. Between the open spaces, Missoula is so richly layered with great food, art, music, sports and interesting people that I’ll be posting adjunct lists in the near future.

  1. Beer tasting in the Big Sky Brewery Taproom. Love the 4 oz tastes, seasonal offerings, and the animals on the labels. Really love the beer.
  2. The Doctor Sigmund Freud sandwich + a cup of Hangover Stew at Doc’s.  I’m not sure I’ve had a better cup of stew anywhere ……and it seriously comes with the best chocolate chip cookie ever.
  3. The footbridge to the University. Walk over it and you can practically feel the buzz of energy, endless possibility and opportunities that reside there. Wandering around campus makes me happy, and thankful that I've been able to call it home for awhile.
  4. The Clark Fork. I could sit for hours and watch it flow by.  Its color, speed, noise and level telling a unique story of past or current weather patterns. I’ve done some of my best thinking, some of my most satisfying writing within sight of its banks.
  5. The surrounding hills and mountains. They change from green to straw to brown to white, markers of the time of year or the time of day. I love looking at this mix of soft roundedness and sharper peaks that serve as a frame for the valley.
  6. Everything about The ‘M’:  The hike, the view, the people I pass. Thank goodness I’m in better shape than the first time I zig-zagged up its steep switchbacks.
  7. The Mission Supreme Burrito with Shredded Beef at Taco del Sol. Not only is it superb, but they have mastered the knack of cooking the rice ‘just right’. I hold mine vertically, open on one end, and eat the filling with a fork from the top down. I get looks from the family……but that’s how I do it.
  8. Fact and Fiction. I am a huge fan of independent bookstores and their thoughtful selection of books. My first stop is always the section showcasing local authors. My second, taking a look at upcoming book signings and events. Can’t help but love the ‘peace’ banner strung across the ceiling in this store on Higgins.
  9. The fly-fishermen and women who cast onto the Clark Fork in the middle of town. There has yet to be a visit when I haven’t seen one.
  10. A walk along the Riverfront Trail that runs above the river and winds through neighborhoods and parks.

I hope this list gives you a few ideas and activities to consider. There are so many more. I’m sure you have some favorites of your own, so please do share!

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