Annual archery competition draws in big crowd at Lone Pine State Park


KALISPELL, Mont. - Parking was hard to come by at Lone Pine State Park today. Many people from the Flathead Valley came out to participate in the annual archery competition.

Rain or shine, the archery competition always draws in a crowd. The nice weather was definitely a highlight to some competitors.

"The weather, to tell you the truth. Last year it was snowing on us, so it was nice just having a little bit of sunshine," said Zach Sanders, a archer competitor.

It did start to rain a little throughout the day, but the archer's still were enjoying their time out on the trails, especially Alana.

"Probably the downhill deer," said Alana, one participant.

Alana is referring to her favorite shot on the course. There were two hiking courses to participate in today. You hike the trail until you reach a target. The targets were different foamed animals like frogs and deer, and then everyone got a turn to shoot.

The competition is just for fun, which people enjoy the most.

"It's not as much competition as much as it is the love of archery. It's the people who like to come out and shoot and they have fun with their families shooting your bows," said Mike Butzlaff, Flathead Valley Archer's President.

And a wide variety of people participate in the event.

"We've had a couple of our club members today, I know they're pushing their 70's or 80's, they're out there packing their bows around. And then we got kids, I think I seen as young as four and five," said Butzlaff.

The Flathead Valley Archer's and Lone Pine State Park anticipated about 100 people, but this afternoon the headcount was at 152 and more were pulling in.

"Some new folks as well as some folks who have been here, and come back every year for the archery shoot," said Amy Grout, Park Manager.

Today marked the 29th annual archery shoot at lone pine state park. They were happy to kick the event off with sunshine and warmer weather.