Montana Outdoors

September 6, 2007


Filed under: Montana, Nature, Outdoors, Photography, Photos, Pictures — montucky @ 8:12 pm

It has been such a dry summer that I just about gave up on berries, even chokecherries. That is, until today when I went down to the river and found that the cherries there are ripe and plentiful. They have also had some visits from the bears: there was bear scat everywhere and it was easy to see large areas that the bears have harvested.

So, tomorrow will be chokecherry picking day for me. I’ll have to remember to take a hiking staff for a bear thumper. A few years ago when I went down there fishing I chased a big boar out of that patch on my way to the river.

This photo of chokecherry blossoms was taken in May.

Chokecherry blossoms

And here is what the berries look like now.






  1. Wow!

    I know my comments are repetitive, but I lack adjectives to describe your blog… 🙂

    It is so soothing to see another person who loves nature so much!


    Comment by narziss — September 7, 2007 @ 12:27 am

  2. I love this post Terry … something is so neat about seeing the process of nature. Nice touch putting up the flowers. I noticed exactly what your talking about; higher elevations – less berries, fall is coming in and fast and the lower I go (and closer to the river banks) the berries are still around and fall colors are coming in slower. That of course made me wonder again…. hum… why? It’s funny what holding a camera makes me notice because I don’t recall ever taking note of these things. Of all the things in the wild I can claim as seeing in the wild a boar just ain’t one of them. That would have scared me witless! I’ve heard rumors those are some of the meanest animals alive. I love these posts where you pull up the flowers and then bring in the berries. That’s a real nice touch. Your last photo is without question the prettiest – that makes a person want to pick it right off the vine and start munching happily. Really lovely post Terry.


    Comment by aullori — September 7, 2007 @ 8:01 am

  3. narziss,

    Thanks for visiting again. I feel the same way when I meet others who truly love the natural world. There is a sense of peace to be achieved in nature that is not available anywhere else I know.


    Comment by montucky — September 7, 2007 @ 9:57 am

  4. Lori,

    A camera does indeed heighten one’s perceptions of the outdoors! I’m glad you mentioned that, because I think about it often.

    Those berries are so irresistible, that I’m about to go pick about 10 gallons and we’re going to make some jelly and syrup. I like the jelly a lot, but the syrup is out of this world!

    I think my wording was a little misleading. When I said “boar” I meant it in the sense of “male bear”. We don’t have the wild boars (pig-types) in Montana. I’ve read that they can be pretty mean, but also good to eat. Sorry to confuse.


    Comment by montucky — September 7, 2007 @ 10:04 am

    • wasn’t chokecherries supposed to be poisonous?


      Comment by Selena — October 4, 2010 @ 4:48 am

      • The seeds and leaves contain a toxin, as do all of the Prunus species, but the flesh and juice of the fruit is good to eat. Most of the wildlife eat the berries, most notably bears, and folks make wine, syrup and jelly from them.


        Comment by montucky — October 4, 2010 @ 4:24 pm

  5. Very nice shots Terry, now you say you have a lot of bears, what kind of bears are we talking here? Black or the Big Guys.


    Comment by Bernie Kasper — September 7, 2007 @ 1:17 pm

  6. The ones that share my apple trees and feed on the chokecherries down by the river are black bears. The closest Griz is a couple miles up the mountain behind us, and there are usually a couple up there.

    On a couple of my hikes to photograph the Chippy Creek fire I ran across Grizzly scat on the trail. That’s in the Baldy Mountain roadless area about 10 miles from here.

    I llike having the black bears around, but I’m not very pleased about having Griz that close.


    Comment by montucky — September 7, 2007 @ 2:00 pm

  7. Oh geesh… my fault – sometimes I’m not up on my country talk. Hubby informed me the female bear is a sow so that makes complete sense. I’ve heard there are a few groups of feral pigs in the US so I thought maybe in your area….

    p.s. I’ve heard the same thing about the taste there is a fellow in these parts that raise his pigs the same way (they forage off of the wild anyway – drink only creek water etc..) Rumor has it – it’s the best meat in the county.


    Comment by aullori — September 7, 2007 @ 5:44 pm

  8. I read something one time about feral pigs in (I think) North Carolina. Said they were the best eating, and a very enjoyable hunt, too. I’ve always kind of wanted to try that.


    Comment by montucky — September 7, 2007 @ 6:43 pm

  9. wow, these berries look delicious. bet the jelly and syrup are great! though they better be awfully good to chance meeting up and tangling w/ a bear or two over them! 🙂


    Comment by silken — September 7, 2007 @ 10:02 pm

  10. It will be delicious! These are wild bears and tangling with one would be a very rare occurrence; very low risk. It’s the park and campground bears that are flaky and therefore pose some risk, not the wild ones. Besides, I left them a lot of berries.


    Comment by montucky — September 7, 2007 @ 11:05 pm

  11. I reference a chokecherry tree multiple times in my novel in progress. Nice seeing these pix since I don’t have the money to travel out there every season to watch the tree change.



    Comment by knightofswords — September 13, 2007 @ 11:04 am

  12. I hope it helps! I’ve loved the chokecherry as long as I can remember. They are so prolific with their blossoms and fulfill that promise with large amounts of fruit.

    I personally prefer syrup or jelly from the chokecherry to that from huckleberries. My wife saw some chokecherry syrup advertised on the internet today for $16 a pint, so I guess there are a few folks around who like it too. When we finish the batch we’re making, we’ll have about 6 gallons in the pantry.


    Comment by montucky — September 13, 2007 @ 3:07 pm

  13. beautiful pictures! Thanks for sharing them.


    Comment by Sandy — September 25, 2009 @ 12:10 pm

  14. You are a great photographer!!! WOW!!! 😀


    Comment by Selena — October 4, 2010 @ 4:45 am

  15. Can I make wine from the blossoms? I can do that with Elderberry-no problem, but chokecherry? Online searching was ‘fruitless’. (smile)


    Comment by Jean — May 4, 2015 @ 2:48 pm

    • From the blossoms? I really would have no idea, but I know very good wine can be made from the juice.
      The blossoms are just starting right now, so it would be a good time to try.


      Comment by montucky — May 4, 2015 @ 7:23 pm

  16. Nice photos. Would you let me use the last one in a book about state symbols I’m working on (Geobop’s State Symbols)? The chokecherry is North Dakota’s official state fruit.

    You can learn more about my book @

    Thank you.

    David Blomstrom

    Liked by 1 person

    Comment by David Blomstrom — May 7, 2018 @ 9:04 am

  17. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

    Comment by wordbear — June 22, 2018 @ 10:35 pm

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Blog at

%d bloggers like this: