Zootown Adventures May 14 2019

As the weather keeps getting warmer, being outdoors is becoming more desirable to everyone here in Missoula, especially after that long winter. All the pale legs are finally coming out in desperate need of some Vitamin D. With myself now working full time, I still make sure to find the time to enjoy the outdoors especially with all the nearby hiking trails Missoula has to offer. It truly does not take very long to explore nature and completely remove yourself from Missoula town life.

After being cooped up indoors for a couple days in a row I decided to take a day to myself and finally hike to the top of Mount Sentinel, after living here for about two years now. And boy did it feel great to be outside. The sun was shining with a temperature of around 70 degrees. I biked to the trail head of the ‘M’ from my apartment complex and then began my solo hike.

After just a few minutes on the ‘M’ trail, you begin to get a birds-eye view of the University of Montana, but as you gain more elevation, the view expands to include all of Missoula, the Clark Fork River, the valley, and distant mountains. Most people make the 'M' their final destination, but what makes this trail so great is that you can continue to climb for about another mile to the top of Mount Sentinel where less people are.

The view from the top of the mountain is even more exquisite than I expected. It was so quiet and peaceful where I really felt the sense of escaping real life. Once I got to the top, I took a good while just taking in the incredible views. To the north I could see Mount Jumbo and the Rattlesnake National Recreation Area and to the south, I could see the Bitterroot Mountains. I was amazed on how easily accessible Mount Sentinel was and how beautiful the views were from the top. This hike also definitely helped my goal of getting a Chaco tan.