There are a lot of hockey traditions around the world, especially in the USA and Canada. The Bozeman Icedogs have one of their own. I very unique training and teambuilding exercise found nowhere else.
Every year the Bozeman Icedogs take a day and have a specific dryland session of hiking up the side of a mountain to what is known in Bozeman and the state of Montana as the College M. The M is a 250 foot structure made of stones that are painted white. It was first inscribed into the mountain in 1915 by MSU students. The M is still maintained by the volunteer students that whitewash them every year. The M is 850 feet above the parking area.
To get there the Icedogs must follow the right path, which is about is about a 60-70 degree rocky incline and is approximately 1/2 mile long. The left path is a bit easier and is approximately 1 1/2 miles long.
Coach Vichorek had this to say about the workout. "I think it is a great tradition for the hockey team. We get several good things out of it as a team building concept as well as a great workout. I also think the view is amazing for everyone, but even more so for players coming from all over the United States to have such an experience. Besides the rocky incline and steepness of the climb I think the altitude of over 5000 feet makes it an even greater challenge."
So a tradition continues for the Icedogs as they are geared up for their regular season on September 20th. With a 5-4 win they hope they have begun to embark on a very different climb.
A look at the College M.