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Libby, Montana
Polar Bear Club

They meet at 2:00 PM on Sundays, October to first Sunday in April, at the Farm-to-Market bridge over Libby Creek, south of Libby. Newcomers and spectators welcome!

Click on photos for a larger view.

What You Should Know Before Taking "The Plunge" (printable PDF)


Polar Bear Rick  

There is an interesting group of people in Libby who like to take winter-time "swims" in Libby Creek: the Libby Polar Bear Club. President Rick Klin (Polar Bear Rick) is an avid plunger, as they are called, who organized the club about 4 years ago when he discovered like-minded people in the area.

Polar Bear Rick enjoys a plunge in Libby CreekPolar Bear Rick has been a plunger for over 25 years, and he organized the Bitterroot Valley Polar Bear Club in Hamilton when he lived there in the early 1980's. He is passionate about the activity, and likes to share information about the sport. He is a firm believer in the health benefits of plunging, including increased blood circulation, a stronger immune system, overall vigor, and the idea that, he says, it just feels great.

More and more adventursome people are coming around to either watch or take a one-time plunge. There are about a half-dozen hardy souls who can be described as "regulars", and Polar Bear Rick is one of those people. He says he has only missed 3 or 4 plunges in the past 4 years. This is during a season that runs every Sunday from October to April. Plungers have ranged in age from 3 to 61.

Water temperatures are typically in the mid to upper 30's during the winter months, with the water gradually warming into the 40's as spring approaches. Air temperatures can range from below zero in November and December into the 50's by March. As long as the ice can be broken on the creek, if it has formed, the group will take their plunge, no matter the temperature.

Of course, skepticism abounds in the non-plungers, and the sentiment that "They must be crazy" is tolerated with good humor by the plungers. They invite spectators and the curious wanting to try a dip of their own to Libby Creek on any Sunday from the last Sunday in October through the first Sunday in April. They meet at 2:00 p.m. at the Farm-to-Market bridge over Libby Creek. The 'meetings' are short: in, out and on their way back to town in 10 or 15 minutes. One-time plungers receive a certificate, and anyone taking 12 dips in one season receives a membership card as an official Libby, Montana Polar Bear.

So if you want to see the Polar Bears in action, visit them at 2:00 on any Sunday through the winter. You're sure to see Polar Bear Rick.

Photos by Maggie Craig, LibbyMT.com

Welcome to the new "honorary" Polar Bears, the 101st Airborne Div, stationed in Iraq!

Libby Creek in February
Click for larger image

Daring members of the Libby, Montana Polar Bear Club
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Documenting the plunge in Libby Creek in February, 2004
Click for larger image

The Club keeps a weekly record of air and water temperatures and compiles charts at the end of the season for each of the members. All swims are video recorded swims.

Libby Polar Bear Club:
(Rick Klin)
E-mail: techrkdk@frontiernet.net
Phone numbers:
406-293-5014 (work)
406-293-5534 (home)

Welcome to the new "honorary" Polar Bears, the 101st Airborne Div, stationed in Iraq! Read the stories at right for more details.

Polar Bear Rick "plunges" with the 101st Airborne Division on December 30, 2007

Polar Bear Rick

The crowd gathers, to watch and to plunge!

In she goes!

Polar Bear Crossing.

 

These people must be
Craaaaaaaaazzzzzzy!

More Stories & Photos

2012:

Libby Polar Bears New Year Plunge
(12/31/12)

Libby Polar Bear Plunge
(12/12/12)

Libby Polar Bears
(2/6/12)

Libby Polar Bears New Year Plunge
(1/4/12)

2011:

Army soldier thanks Libby Polar Bear Club
(6/21/11)

Polar Bear Club 2011 New Year Plunge
(1/3/11)

2009:

Polar Bears Final Plunge of Season
(4/9/08)

2008:

Libby Polar Bears New Year Plunge
(12/28/08)
Polar Bear Weather
(12/21/08)

2007:

101st Airborne Division become "Honorary" Polar Bears:
Soldiers in Iraq ask to be "Honorary" Polar Bears
(12/28/07)
101st Airborne Div invited to "plunge" with the Libby Polar Bears
(12/29/07)
101st Airborne become honorary members of Polar Bear Club
(12/30/07)

April 1, 2007
January 14, 2007
January 1, 2007 (16 photos)

2006:

December 31, 2006
October 29, 2006
April 2, 2006
January 1, 2006 (22 photos)

2005:

December 4, 2005
October 30, 2005
January 1, 2005

Spectators always welcome!

   
   


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