The 2020 First Quarter Market Report for Western Montana shows a robust market that is a continuation of the past several years. We continue to see many of the transactions close that were written prior to mid March. As expected, the Shelter In Place is a reality for most people in the State of Montana, which currently is in effect through April 24. Because of this, the stable market we have enjoyed in the recent past has slowed down as showing activity levels dropped over the past month. The good news is that Real Estate was deemed an essential business in the State; therefore, we are able to actively perform our duties to assist our clients during these trying times; while still offering the safety protocols that have been set forth. Technology has allowed us to work in very creative ways. Inquires and communication with clients show a continued strong interest in Western Montana’s real estate. However, we are anticipating a softer beginning to our 2nd Quarter due to our current Shelter In Place for locals and Quarantine rules for visitors. It is too early to predict how the market will be affected by the Coronavirus in the longer term although we are optimistic that people will want to be in our beautiful area. As we move forward, we will continue to list and sell property based out of our home offices, as efficiently and safely as possible. Feel free to reach out for a showing or meeting via video chat or go to www.glaciersir.com or www.sothebysrealty.com to preview our exceptional properties.
We’re here and ready to assist with any questions you have regarding our market. Please don’t hesitate to reach out if we can help you in any manner. We’re a community and we’re in this together. Stay healthy!
With recent dine-in options changing, many local establishments have added take out, carry out, meal kits and delivery services. We encourage you to participate in a “Take Out Blitz” to inject some business and dollars into these businesses that are impacted. If you don’t want to order take-out or delivery – go online and buy some gift cards to use at a later date when they reopen all services.
Practitioners are offering telehealth and suggest structured activities, getting outside to cope with COVID-19 anxiety
As social distancing becomes the new norm and coronavirus-caused closures continue to rattle Montana, mental health professionals are responding to an uptick in anxiety and fear of what the uncertain future holds.
Many clinics are transitioning to telehealth, but psychologist Dr. Sara Boilen of Sweetgrass Psychological Services in Whitefish says their doors remained open, with intense precautionary measures in place, as of March 20, while she also encourages remote appointments to prevent COVID-19’s spread.
“A lot of people want to sit in our space and feel normal and kind of feel the calm and security in our building,” Boilen said.
Boilen offers video chat and phone call services, encouraging people to find private spaces, even if it’s in their car. While Sweetgrass encourages this shift to telehealth, Boilen says some people have encountered issues like a lack of privacy or lack of WiFi for video chat or cell service in their home. Others don’t like telehealth.
“Not everybody likes looking at their face when they’re crying,” Boilen said.
But Boilen says telehealth poses challenges with children’s therapy too since there’s so much playtime involved in their sessions. She’s working to address these issues by coaching parents to help their kids.
Boilen is also seeing an uptick in new patients who are experiencing anxiety in the wake of coronavirus uncertainty.
“We don’t do well with the unknown,” she said.
Dr. Michael Newman, a psychiatrist at Kalispell Regional Healthcare, also points to the anxiety associated with coronavirus uncertainty. In a live KRH Facebook video stream, Newman answered community members’ mental health questions and offered coping mechanisms for dealing with elevated anxieties.
“There’s a fair amount of anxiety going around,” Newman said. “There’s uncertainty. How long will it last? How severe is it going to be?”
Newman says social distancing should not be confused with social isolation, and while it’s important to keep a safe physical distance, people can use technology and social media to replace in-person interactions in the meantime.
Similarly, Boilen prefers the term “physical distancing” and also encourages the use of video chat, apps and technology to remain social, while limiting the Netflix vortex.
Limiting media consumption is another way to avoid anxiety and overwhelming feelings, whether it’s giving yourself a time limit or the number of times you check per day, she said.
She also suggests picking up new hobbies to distract the brain and redirect to something positive. Getting outside is another coping mechanism, although remaining six feet apart from others is advised.
“Staying six feet apart is not that hard if you’re on a trail walk,” Boilen said.
Soothing practices like meditation, yoga and cooking are other beneficial ways to decompress, she said.
Newman suggests that people get into some sort of routine, whether that’s cleaning the house or tackling house projects.
“I just want to reiterate … don’t panic,” Newman said. “Panic doesn’t get anybody anywhere.”
During this time of uncertainty, it’s crucial to remember that, while following the CDC’s recommended safety steps, there are many ways we can support those in our communities most impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Sotheby’s International Realty agents are proudly invested in their local communities and, together, we wanted to share this resource for those able to make a positive impact during this trying time.
Support Small Businesses
Small businesses like local restaurants and retailers are some of the hardest hit as many states and provinces implement curfews and shutdowns. Think of the impact these establishments have on your community – and of what it would be like to not have them. Ordering take-out or delivery from local restaurants, purchasing gift cards for use at a later date (many restaurateurs have pledged gift card proceeds to support their impacted employees), or ordering a delivered meal for a loved one or neighbor are great ways to help your favorite local spots.
The Red Cross is reporting a severe blood shortage and is urging those healthy enough to donate to do so. Donating blood is a way to, quite literally, save lives. Some companies like Rejuvio or Vitalant will make house calls to collect your donation from your own home.
Check in on Friends, Neighbors, and Family
While social distancing or sheltering in place is in effect, those who struggle with anxiety and depression may feel worsened symptoms. Take the time to connect with loved ones and neighbors on the phone or through video chat. Social distancing can make some feel alone or overwhelmed, check to see if they need any assistance or necessities like food or toiletries.
Donate to a Food Bank
As schools and businesses are forced to close, food banks are under pressure. “One of the most significant impacts has been school closures. Without access to school meals, children lose a consistent source of healthy food,” says Feeding America, a nation-wide network of food banks. Monetary donations to your local food bank or items of need will help feed those struggling in your community.
Most importantly, continue to practice safe social distancing. We are all in this together, from our individual communities to the larger global society, and we hope you stay healthy and safe during this trying time.
Welcome to The Row at Milwaukee Trail! These brand new Edgell-built townhomes feature modern design and innovative floor plans! With 3 levels, each townhome has 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms and 2 living areas, with a bonus room which could be used as an office or workout room. The 2nd floor offers 1 bed, 1 bath and an open-concept kitchen and living area, with a pantry, eat-in kitchen island, and deck off the living room. The other 2 bedrooms are on the 3rd floor with another full bathroom, laundry area, second living room and vaulted ceilings. Both living rooms and the 2nd-floor decks face the trail, and each yard has a gate to serve as front-door access onto the trail. Completion in Spring 2020.
Listed by Gillian Fetz | Glacier Sotheby’s International Realty
406.529.4602 | firstname.lastname@example.org
The Condos at Grand Ave and North 3rd Street
1025 Grand Avenue, Missoula, Montana
Units 1, 2 & 4 | $254,000 – $262,000
Welcome to the Condos at Grand Ave and North 3rd Street! These four brand new condos are nestled into Missoula’s hip Northside neighborhood, blocks from downtown, restaurants and breweries. All units are 2 bedroom, 1 bathroom with beautiful design and a contemporary aesthetic! Each condo comes with a detached garage for storage and parking. Finish selections provided upon request. Built by Edgell Building, condos should be complete around May 1, 2020.
Listed by Gillian Fetz | Glacier Sotheby’s International Realty
406.529.4602 | email@example.com
Remote enough to still be considered a hidden gem and authentic enough to be worthy of that moniker, this ski town knows exactly what it wants to be.
The town of Whitefish, MT is absolutely captivating
Illustration by Josh Cochran
The best way to measure the appeal of Whitefish is to measure what it’s not: glitzy, overbuilt, or overpriced. Through the blessings of a remote Northern Montana location, a passionate local community, and an honest-to-goodness real town, this is a place totally comfortable in its own skin.
The mountain doesn’t literally spill into the town of Whitefish, but it always looms large from downtown, and even more importantly, in the heart of the community. There may not be any stronger simpatico between the locals and the mountain than you’ll find here.
Get yourself to the intersection of East 1st Street and Central Ave., pause, and take a deep breath of clean Montana air. Welcome to a tight-knit community with a chilled-out atmosphere. This former Montana railroad town has been transformed into an enthusiastic outdoor recreational hub with a surprising (and growing) array of top-notch restaurants and bars, with a few galleries nicely adding to the mix.
Outsiders like to peg a trip to Whitefish as a nostalgia-tinted journey back to the way skiing used to be. Nonsense. Talk to the locals and they see their town as the way skiing always has been, and always will be. Sure, some grizzly old-schoolers like to grouse about the handful of new hipster joints opening up. But the vibe of places like the Firebrand Hotel, Spotted Bear Spirits Tasting Room, and the Montana Tap House only show that Whitefish occupies the near-perfect homeostasis of small-town friendliness and urban-chic. Still aching for some nostalgia? Enjoy the timeless appeal of breakfast at The Buffalo Café or an après draft at the Bierstube up at the mountain.
A few years back, the resort marketers decided to re-brand the mountain Whitefish Mountain. Fair enough. However the locals still refer to their ski area as Big Mountain, and probably always will. There are bigger mountains. And mountains with more lifts. But turn for turn, Big Mountain, er, Whitefish Mountain punches up in its weight class, offering everything from learn-to-turn cruisers to master-class steeps—not to mention friendly lift mates who will actually tell you where the good stuff is. And the snow? Pffft. You’re in northern Montana, after all.
Embracing its downtown location, the new Firebrand Hotel welcomes you as a lodging guest or an après-ski visitor to its spacious and comfy central lobby and bar. In-house spa, 24-hour fitness center, rooftop hot tub, business services, dog-friendly rooms, and lobby coffee bar make your stay seamless.
Spotted Bear Spirits
Here’s a sip of the new Montana hipster culture: a tasting room for a local distillery. The clean lines of the room telegraph its new-school ethos, as does the mustache printed on the bottom of the copper mugs (get it?). We’re partial to both the Spotted Bear Coffee Liqueur and the local vodka. Enjoy them together in the Snowghost.
Montana Coffee Traders
You can start your day without coffee, but why? At the intersection of café culture and local vibes, this joint offers a full espresso bar, Montana-strong coffee, fresh baked goods, and other coffeehouse standards. The downtown café also serves walls of local art and (thank you) free wifi.
A new addition to the dining scene, Abruzzo has become a local fave thanks to from-scratch dishes and an emphasis on simple presentations. Late-breaking plans? Head to the lounge (no reservations) and belly up to one of the longest bars in Whitefish. Good policy: The lounge and dining room serve the same menu.
Montana Tap House
This welcoming brewhouse serves 50-plus beers on tap—30 of them Montana-brewed— plus a full menu of tap-house-friendly eats, including delicious pizza using dough made at Kalispell-based Ceres Bakery. Settle into a couch in front of the fireplace and discover your new favorite local craft beer.
“Skijoring during Winter Carnival (Feb. 7–9, 2020) is by far my favorite local event, and it’s been a staple crowd-pleaser since the 1960s! Some of the best rippers from Whitefish Mountain Resort hold onto a rope looped on the horn of a horse’s saddle and send it around a track with jumps and obstacles. I mean, how much more Montana can you get?!”
As enthusiasts pray for fresh powder and adventurers assemble their gear, take inspiration from this scenic mood board that contains all things ski: cozy interiors, inviting saunas, and the thrill of the hills. Think of it as an avant-ski; we’ll leave the après up to you.
Expert course raters sized up the best golf courses on the planet to rank GOLF’s Top 100 Courses in the World for 2020-21.
99. Rock Creek Cattle Company
DEER LODGE, MT
TOM DOAK, 2008
Tom Doak’s works along large bodies of water populate our list but some contend what he did in the American West at Rock Creek is just as exhilarating as his more photographed courses in sandy soil. Though Montana’s rocky conditions made for a tough build, the end result are wide fairways that flow over the tumbling land with a grace and ease that is hard to fathom. The same design principles — fairway contours that either shunt you out of position or send you to the ideal location, hazards that appear ageless and greens that offer a wide range of hole locations — demand you reassess how to best play each hole from one day to the next. Hard to find better playing angles.
View current listings here, or contact GSIR’s Ron Snow for more information on the exclusive Rock Creek Cattle Company community.
Whitefish embraces the old school passion that fuels the sport of skiing
Whitefish Mountain Resort earned its highest ranking ever from SKI Magazine Readers as the No. 3 Resort in the West, its highest ranking to date. Consistently ranking among the top resorts in North America, Whitefish stands out as the only resort ranked in the top 10 for Service that is also ranked in the Top 10 for Value, proving that it is possible to deliver outstanding service while keeping the ski experience affordable.
“We are deeply honored to be named among the top resorts in the west in SKI Magazine’s 2020 Resort Guide, it is our mission to provide a memorable experience that is affordable, personal and fun. This year’s ranking is indeed a sign that skiers appreciate finding a ski area that values character, and makes guests feel relaxed so they can be themselves. This ranking illustrates our commitment to providing a high level of hospitality while maintaining the community’s unique and colorful qualities that set us apart, without charging a premium for it. Whitefish’s warm and welcoming personality extends beyond the resort to all the businesses throughout the community that take care of our visitors and go above and beyond to make them feel welcome.”
– Dan Graves, CEO Whitefish Mountain Resort
Whitefish Mountain Resort, Mont.
There’s something slightly melancholy about Whitefish’s rise up the rankings, and the heartfelt affection it’s receiving from a new generation of fans. The overwhelming message from readers is: “The locals are friendly and helpful. It’s the people who really make it special.” Apparently, the genuine hospitality found here is increasingly rare in the rapidly consolidating resort universe. That’s a shame. More the reason to head to Whitefish, which, not surprisingly, lands No. 1 in Local Flavor.
Oddly enough, what can get overlooked is the serious skiing. A glance at the trail map shows that black is the dominant trail color. Hellroaring Basin is big-time legit, as is almost everything in the East Rim pod when taking advantage of the new Chair 5. One reader does grouse that when the weather report says “chilly,” “we’re talking frostbite.” Relax. That’s just Montana grading on a curve. There’s no grade inflation needed for the “warm and welcoming” town of Whitefish. “I’m hesitant to say too many great things. I would rather it remain a secret,” is a common sentiment.
At every turn, it becomes clear that Whitefish embraces the old school passion that fuels the sport. Kids six and under ski free (the industry standard is 4). And the resort actually keeps a (public!) tracker on its website of vertical feet skied across a gloriously wide range of patrons: super seniors, kids, college students, business partners, even employees, and so on. The fun part is the disclaimer, which advises everyone to please chill out: “Your vertical is approximate and some scans can take several days to show up, or they might not show up at all. Our recommendation is that you enjoy the vertical program but not get too terribly hung-up on the results.” Whitefish gets it. Come crank a few turns here, and you will too. — Greg Ditrinco
LOCAL TIP: In what’s known locally as the “4 o’clock clear,” the mountain’s famous cloud cover tends to break up just about the time the lifts close. Act like a local and grab the last chair to the summit, linger a bit, and soak in the alpenglow and the glorious views on the way down.
MANDATORY RUN: Inspiration. The name says it all. This meandering groomer off the Big Mountain Express drops down the ridgeline with Glacier National Park views to skier’s left and valley views to the right. On an inversion day, the clouds stretch like a fluffy sea across the valley floor.
FAMILY EXPERIENCE: Without being too melodramatic, take an off-day trip with the kids to Glacier National Park for a Ranger-led snowshoe walk to see the eponymous features of the park before they disappear.
SKI Magazine’s 2018 Review of Whitefish, Montana
This quaint, old-school Montana skier’s mountain has been attracting attention for all the right reasons. It’s not crowded. Not pretentious. Not pricey. In other words, not a mega-resort. So what’s the big deal? Quite simply, Whitefish’s loyal fans across the ski universe pretty much just adore the place, giving it the highest praise for Overall Satisfaction.
Leading that buzz is its kick-butt/no lift-line skiing. North Side and Hellroaring Basin keep it real. And moving Chair 5 last season to the east side of the mountain deleted the long traverse back to Chair 1, creating a sweet pod of expert terrain. (Look- ing to prove yourself? Drop in and test your technique on NBC—North Bowl Chute—accessible from the top of the East Rim run. Enjoy lots of mandatory jump turns and spectators checking you out from Chair 5.)
But at the end of the day, it’s the small-town Montana hospitality—found sharing a lunch table at the Summit House or in the family trail tips heard from a local parent on Chair 2—that should reserve Whitefish a spot on your must-visits. Yes, there’s fog. And you bet it’s cold here in Northern Montana. But no one can argue that this resort must be doing something right: For the second consecutive season it has set a skier-visit record. That’s saying something. – Greg Ditrinco