Jack McNeel was born and raised in Idaho. His working career was spent with Idaho Fish and Game Department but after retirement he launched a career as a free lance writer and photographer for many publications, primarily about Native American subjects, hunting, fishing, and travel. He now lives in Hayden, Idaho.
It’s been my good fortune to have traveled extensively during my lifetime, and much of that has taken place in the western U.S. from Alaska to Mexico. Some towns hold a special appeal and keep calling me back. Each state has probably two or three towns that hold that appeal. The small town of Leavenworth, Wash., has a particularly strong pull at Christmas.
One doesn’t normally think of a Catholic nun in terms of running marathons and Ironman competitions. Sister Madonna Buder is not only an exemption to those thoughts but may well be the best at her age to ever compete in the Ironman. Now at 88, she still travels around the country to compete in triathlons; thus the reason for her nickname.
The Blackfeet Reservation in northwestern Montana, just east of Glacier National Park, is the 13th largest reservation in the U.S. at about 1.5 million acres. Roughly 85 percent of the residents are Native Americans.
Folks in inland states like Montana and Idaho often look for “something different” when they go on vacation. Whidbey Island has beach and fishing activities, numerous parks, wonderful scenery, rich history, and unique lodging. It’s all within a day’s drive for all but those living in eastern Montana.