The other day my friend and I decided to hike Four Dances Trail in Billings. Surprisingly this trail was NOT where I thought it was. It was on the other side of town and close to my house. We just had to jump on the highway and go a few exits. One of the things that annoyed me when I got the job in Billings was people telling me how lame Billings is. And how they would rather move anywhere else in Montana than to Billings. From what I’ve found there are quite a few things to do here in Billings, as many as any other town in Montana, and I am going to share them and try to change people’s perceptions. Another frustration I have is photographs of Montana - people always post Glacier and Yellowstone, maybe add in the mountains and rivers surrounding Bozeman and Big Sky. But Montana is so much more than a few national parks. There is so much beauty and history all over Montana and I want to spend my time sharing all of those other places!
One of the things I try to consistently post with my posts is where I took my photos, when, and how to find more photos from this area on my Instagram, as shown below. When I travel I also like to share where I slept, ate, and visited, again to share as easily as possible with all of you!
Where: Four Dance Trail, Billings, Montana
When: November 2018
During this hike I tried to be more creative with my photos. I tried to see angles or things that aren’t the usual photographs. I am learning from all of the greats that I really need to be going out at sunrise and sunset. At first I was fighting this then I spent some time outside watching the Earth change as the light moved and realized how right they are. Although it’s a huge bummer to get up early and stay up late to chase sunlight, the BEST thing about the winter, though, is that sunrise is late at 7:30 am and sunset is early at 4:30 pm. I still have a hard time ONLY taking photos at these times of day, especially if the hike is far and I either drove there for the day or need to hike far into the woods. I don’t really know what the balance is yet or who I am as a photographer but I am having a blast experimenting.
My friend and I walked along the top of the trail and realized we weren’t very tired. At the top it was extremely windy, almost blow you over windy, so it was harder to take pictures. I wanted to stand closer to the edge but I was afraid I might fall off the cliff. So we decided to follow a path that lead down to the river and back up. We got about half way down and almost turned around but decided to head back up because we had made it that far. All in all we walked about 4 miles. And the trek back up once we go to the river definitely made it a work out.
PRO TIP: I keep forgetting that I need to tie my hair back in a low bun or braid it when I hike in the winter because the back of the coat and my hat seem to rub it into a snarly mess!
This trail is extremely close to Billings, especially if you live in the heights. You can walk as little or as far as you want and get a decent workout in. Additionally the views from the top are phenomenal. I would highly recommended this hike and I hope you continue to follow my journey as I explore “the rest of Montana!” ;)