Nate Hegyi

Nate is UM School of Journalism reporter. He reads the news on Montana Public Radio three nights a week.

The ongoing trade war with China is feeling close to home these days. Mounting tariffs on outdoor recreation gear may hit the wallets of folks in the Mountain West who love going outside.

On Monday, the Trump administration announced $200 billion dollars worth of new tariffs on products from China.

“This is going to include backpacks, sport bags, leather ski gloves, bikes and some camping equipment,” Rich Harper, a trade analyst with the lobbying group Outdoor Industry Association, said.

Newspapers across the Mountain West have faced troubling times recently. There have been layoffs, budget cuts and, on Tuesday morning, Montana’s biggest alternative weekly was abruptly shut down by its parent company.

The National Rifle Association has spent nearly $3 million so far in the 2018 election cycle. A big chunk of that change is centered on a race right here in the Mountain West.

Monday was World Suicide Prevention Day. Here in the Mountain West, we have some of the highest suicide rates in the country.

On a cold January day more than a century ago, U.S. troops massacred nearly 200 Piikani people on a Montana river bank. Most were women, children and old folks.

"It's hard to imagine," Chief Stanley Charles Grier of the Piikani Nation in Alberta, Canada said.

Lyle St. Goddard, 56, is running along a dirt trail on the Blackfeet Reservation in Montana.

"It takes me about a lap to loosen up," he says.

Being a hotshot is a young man's game and St. Goddard believes he's one of the oldest hotshot crew members in the country.

"I still can do it," he says. "I just got to keep in shape. I'll be okay."

St. Goddard supervises the Chief Mountain Hotshots, one of the big employers of young men and women on the reservation. They only hire Natives and they can promise good pay and the chance to travel all over the country.

6:00 p.m. update: A federal judge has put the freeze on grizzly bear hunts near Yellowstone National Park while he mulls reinstating Endangered Species Act protections for the animals. They will now be pushed back at least two weeks. 

A federal judge is taking his time deciding whether or not to reinstitute Endangered Species Act protections for Yellowstone-area grizzly bears.

A U.S. district court hearing Thursday could decide the fate of grizzly bears living around Yellowstone National Park.

According to a new report by the World Wildlife Fund, recent low crop prices mean some ranchers are shifting their lands from crops back to grassland for cattle.


Wildfire smoke reached dangerous levels across the Mountain West Monday. Eastern Washington had the worst air in the country and all 56 counties in Montana were under an air quality alert – possibly the first time that’s happened in the state’s history.

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