Distinctly Montana Magazine

Distinctly Montana Spring 2018

Distinctly Montana Magazine

Issue link: https://digital.distinctlymontana.com/i/952842

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Page 48 of 99

W W W. D I S T I N C T LY M O N TA NA . C O M 47 FEATHERED PIPE RANCH: A FAMILY AFFAIR After a full day of yoga instruction, guests congregate at the picnic table overlooking the lake, plates brimming with falafel, spanakopita, fresh fig salad and baklava. Howard Levin, an architect, designer, former Feathered Pipe Ranch manager and abundant source of entertaining stories, is recalling his time at Sai Baba's ashram in India, where he came to know the retreat's founder, India Supera, 45 years prior. Tom Ryan, the self-taught master carpenter who built most of the structures on the property, strolls in with his black lab Ringo. Supera inherited 110 acres west of Helena from her late friend Jerry Duncan in the early 1970s and began hosting retreats shortly thereafter. At 24-years-old and no formal higher education, Supera was unsure of how to run an organization, but there was something larger at play. "We were known as the hippies at the end of the gulch, and we were busy with life-changing work in the world," Supera says. "We had the 'If you build it, they will come' mentality, and we knew that every instance of positive change is important in the lives of our children and grandchildren." Tents, cabins, tipis and yurts dot the mountain terrain and are connected by easy foot trails and solar lamps. Prayer flags wave be- feathered Pipe: a morning view of the lake LARRY STANLEY ZANE WILLIAMS ANNE JABLONSKI ANNE JABLONSKI 1

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