A weekly recounting of the weekend adventures of Tom Kotynski, retired Great Falls Tribune Associate Editor, who prowls Montana's mountains and communities' happenings. All photos and writing are copyright Tom Kotynski.
This is the time to get on top of any of the numerous buttes in the area --- one of the Square Buttes, Crown Butte, or any of the buttes on private land. Make sure you ask first. We scrambled up one of these buttes Sunday (I won't identify it, though) and got an amphitheatre view of the Rocky Mountain Front to the west and the Great Plains to the east. Many of these buttes were formed by volcanic forces that worked their way through cracks in the crust of the earth. Climbing these is tricky because the rock is unstable and it is easy to twist an ankle or knee or to lose balance and fall. It was particularly tricky Sunday because it rained, making the rock slippery. While climbing we watched a herd of elk and enjoyed the numerous wildflowers in bloom. The yellow Arrowlead Balsamroot dominated the landscape.