A place that I have visited many, many times, the Lee Metcalf National Refuge has always had a special draw on me. The series of ponds host a variety of waterfowl and other water throughout the year, and has one of the few extensive wetland areas in the Bitterroot Valley, it serves as an important stopover and breeding for these species. The Kenai Trail runs north from the terrific Visitor’s Center, and contours besides a several ponds and draws. At the terminus of the trail, a viewing platform has been constructed (although in this day the big pond was completely devoid of life). As I hiked along the trail, dozens of Ring-necked Pheasants flushed from the cattails and flew like cruise missiles over the marsh.