Seeley Swan Pathfinder -

20/35 Year Look Back

 

August 18, 2022

Pathfinder photo from the Aug. 20, 1987 issue

Allen and Mildren Chaffin.

In celebration of 36 years of the Seeley Swan Pathfinder, each week we will run parts of articles that appeared in the issue 35 years ago and 20 years ago. The entire issue will be uploaded to our website seeleylake.com for you to enjoy. We hope you will enjoy the journey with us as we follow our community through the past 36 years as documented by the Pathfinder.

35 years ago: August 20, 1987 issue

Chaffins celebrate 50 years

What does it take for a marriage to last 50 years? Well, you take the bumps as they come, and hold your tongue! That advice comes from Mildred Chaffin, Seeley Lake. She and her husband Allen recently celebrated their Golden Wedding Anniversary at the Seeley Lake Community Hall.

Allen Chaffin agrees with Mildred's advice, and adds, "Each one has to give and take. You have to work together and talk things out."

About 400 people, including families from Alaska, Maine, Indiana and California attended last Saturday's celebration hosted by the Chaffins's sons and daughters. Mildred and Allen were married in 1937 in Missoula. Together they raised their seven children in Arlee and, later, Seeley Lake. The Chaffins are now "grandma and grandpa" to some 36 grandchildren and numerous great grandchildren.

Allen Chaffin grew up near Evaro, Montana. He remembers packing into the South Fork of the Flathead as a young child. Allen frequently traveled with outfitters and Indians from the Mission Valley to Seeley Lake. He remembers fording the Clearwater River near the site of his present home. "Little did I know that I would be living here today," he chuckled recently. His love affair with the wild lands of the South Fork led him to become an outfitter and guide, which he and Mildred worked at for nearly 20 years from the mid-40s through 1962.

In 1953, Chaffins moved from Arlee to Seeley Lake. In the 1960s, they retired from their private outfitting business and Allen went to work for the Forest Service as a packer. He retired from the Seeley lake Ranger District in 1981. Allen and Mildred have witnessed first-hand the evolution of the South Fork country from a Primitive Area in the 1930s, complete with Indian camps and white men's homesteads, to the Bob Marshall Wilderness - as the area is known today....

To read the rest of this article more from this issue, visit https://www.seeleylake.com/home/customer_files/article_documents/1987-08-20.pdf

20 years ago: August 22, 2002 issue

Trapping harvests shed light on secretive furbearers

I'd hate to know how many trees have given their lives to carry my pearls of wisdom about elk, white-tailed deer, mule deer and other big game species to Pathfinder readers over the years. And, when elk and deer hunting season is open, everyone knows it.

But, there is a relatively unheralded collection of wildlife species that is interesting in its own right, and also supports a long heritage of sustenance from the land. I'm speaking of furbearing mammals and trapping. And, you would have to agree that furbearers live out their lives, and trappers pursue their avocation, with comparatively little notice from the average person.

Which is the way both like it.

But, I'd like to shed a little light, if for no other reason than to have a little fun. I have at my disposal the trapping statistics from the 2000-2001 season, as reprinted in the Spring 2002 Newsletter of Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks' State furbearer Program.

Created by Anne Dahl

And, now I'd like you to try and match the statewide harvest level with the correct furbearing species. I'll provide you with the harvest numbers and the furbearing species. All you have to do is match them correctly.

First I'll list the 2000-2001 statewide harvest levels: 9,000; 48; 14,000; 1,550; 1,050; 7;13;0;1,400; 175; 1,550; 9,000; 2,150; 4,400 and 500.

Here are the furbearing critters to choose from: muskrat, otter, beaver, wolverine, marten, fisher, mink, skunk, bobcat, lynx, weasel, badger, raccoon, coyote and fox...

To read the rest of this article and other articles from this issue visit https://www.seeleylake.com/home/customer_files/article_documents/2002-08-22.pdf

 

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