Club Announcements

Members may post announcements here. If you are a member but are unable to post, please contact Steve. If you are not a member, but have an event to announce that might be of widespread interest to the members of Big Sky Rocketry Association, please send your announcements to

2017 Launch Schedule

posted Jan 7, 2017, 1:14 PM by Steve Shannon

BSRA March Launch - March 25, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.,
BSRA April Launch - April 22, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.,
BSRA Greg Simpson Memorial Launch - May 27 - 28, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.,
BSRA June Launch - June 24, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.,
BSRA July Launch - July 22, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.,
August - No Launch
BSRA Rich Thorne Memorial Launch - September 2 - 3, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.,
BSRA October Launch - October 7, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m., and
BSRA November Launch - November 4, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.

Greg Simpson

posted Dec 17, 2016, 8:37 PM by Steve Shannon

I'm very sorry to inform you all that our long time friend, flyer, club member, and club Secretary Greg Simpson passed away on Thursday, December 15th, 2017 due to a blood clot that traveled to his heart. We will all miss his infectious smile and cheerful personality. Although he hadn't had a chance to fly with us recently, he was hoping to fly with us this coming year and he had agreed to be re-nominated as Secretary.  Greg was a Navy veteran, a Deacon for his church in Billings, a father, husband, and all around terrific guy. The last time I saw him he was wearing a blue NASA jumpsuit and flying rockets. I will miss him.
Services are at St Thomas the Apostle Catholic Church in Billings as follows:
Vigil Service at 7:00 PM on Tuesday.
Funeral at 10:00 AM Wednesday.

Last Scheduled Launch - November 5, 2016

posted Nov 4, 2016, 9:28 AM by Steve Shannon

Just a reminder that our last scheduled launch for 2016 will be held tomorrow at our usual location. The hours will be 10 am – 4 pm.

I just checked the weather forecast. Everything looks great. Winds will be light. Temperatures will be chilly at first but will warm up nicely and it looks like skies will be clear. It could be one of the nicest launch days yet. I have activated the waiver to 32,000’ MSL for a high flying rocket.

So, bring your rockets, wear layers so you can enjoy the beautiful weather, and come launch with us!

Friday, October 14 Launch - Weather Warning

posted Oct 14, 2016, 6:36 AM by Steve Shannon

There's a very high possibility that today's launch will be cancelled.  I'm on my way to the field shortly, but wind and rain are in the forecast.  I'll deliver my trailer, pay for the Porta-potty and lay out the cables, but right now, as far as I know, I will be the only one there today. If it starts raining I'll probably leave the trailer there and cancel for the day.  I might hike the hills looking for Dale's and Calvin's various rocket parts.
If you decide to make the drive to the range today, call me first at 406 490-7855.

"Return to Launch" Launch - Two Day Launch, Friday, October 14 and Saturday, October 15.

posted Oct 2, 2016, 8:03 AM by Steve Shannon   [ updated Oct 2, 2016, 8:18 AM ]

Big Sky Rocketry Association is pleased to announce the end of Stage 1 restrictions for Madison County.  This means we are able to begin planning launch dates again.  We were unable to launch in August and September, so after some discussion Big Sky Rocketry Association has decided to have a two day launch in October.
Our scheduled launch for October was on the 15th, which is a Saturday.  After receiving very limited feedback from our members it appears that the preceding Friday works for the greatest number of people. 
Therefore, our October launch will be held on Friday, October 14 and Saturday, October 15.

2016 Launches Scheduled

posted Feb 18, 2016, 2:49 PM by Steve Shannon   [ updated Oct 2, 2016, 8:08 AM ]

March 19th This is a newly scheduled launch.

April 2nd (Please note this is a change of one week from the initial schedule.)

April 30th

May 28th & 29th (two day Tripoli launch with Research Motors allowed – NAR members welcome, but all flyers must be a member of one or the other national organizations for insurance purposes). 

June 25th

July 23rd    This is a change from the original schedule.

August 20th Cancellation due to Fire Restrictions.

September 17th Cancellation due to Fire Restrictions.

October 14th and 15th Additional Day to partially make up for cancelled launches.

November 5th

Driving Directions to the Big Sky Rocketry Launch Site

posted Sep 27, 2015, 8:08 PM by Steve Shannon

To get to the launch site from the east: Drive to Twin Bridges. As you pass through Twin Bridges you will come to a flashing light. Turn right at the light and note the mileage or reset your trip odometer. Proceed over the bridge and past the old orphanage. Turn right on the small paved turnoff. Follow that road, staying to the left (South) at two forks. The launch site is about 9.8 miles from the flashing light. 

From the west: Take the Melrose exit off I-15. Turn west. When you get to the intersection turn south. About a quarter mile from the intersection is a turn off that is marked "Twin Bridges." Take that road and follow it for 10.2 miles.

As long as we can't fly, why not buy?

posted Jul 26, 2015, 7:58 PM by Steve Shannon

Bridles and blankets 1Some of the webbing and Walston Systems Mike has for sale.
Mike Whorley came to our site several years ago and set the altitude record of 32,000 feet AGL while successfully flying his Level 3 certification flight with a Mongoose 98 and an N-2000 motor.  Things changes and Mike has some other opportunities right now that require some immediate cash.  So, he's interested in selling off the Mongoose and motor case as well as a bunch of other stuff.  He needs $1,500 for it all, plus shipping or he can deliver to Dickinson, North Dakota.  That's a great price for any of you needing any of these things. You may want to join with other members of BSRA to buy these. 
Here's the list he sent me:
98 mm Mongoose with 60 inch booster complete with Aerotech motor case for N2000, recovery chutes and CD3 CO2 ejection system. 54 mm 4 in. unbuilt fiberglass Darkstar 2 Walston Retrieval Systems receivers and three long range transmitters Assorted Kevlar blankets Assorted Kevlar strap Assorted Kevlar rope Assorted nylon strap 7 Assorted smaller shutes 2 new 4 in. fireballs 1 new fruity chutes cfc 96 (Steve's note: this is a very cool half torus parachute that's very efficient) 1 parachute slider 2 boxes full of 3 and 4 inch tubes and couplers.

May 16, 2015 Launch Cancelled

posted May 14, 2015, 5:55 AM by Steve Shannon

I’m sorry to announce the cancellation of the Big Sky Rocketry Association's second launch of 2015, which was scheduled to be held Saturday, May 16, 2015

The current forecast for the area is low 50 degree temperatures, completely overcast with a 90% chance of precipitation all morning until thunderstorms from 10 until 3. Winds are predicted to be in the low double digits nearly all day.

I will look for a way to add a launch later in the year, possibly by extending one of our scheduled launches to two days.

Hopefully the rains we are getting now will result in reduced fire danger in late July, August, and September.

2015 - Launch Calendar

posted Feb 24, 2015, 8:39 PM by Steve Shannon   [ updated Nov 5, 2015, 7:24 AM ]

The launch dates for 2015 are as follows:
April 18 - NAR Launch Insurance,
May 16 - TRA Launch Insurance - Canceled due to extreme likelihood of rain, wind, lightning, boils, and pestilence,
June 20 - NAR Launch Insurance,
July 18 - TRA Launch Insurance (Canceled - fire restrictions),
August 15 - NAR Launch Insurance (Canceled - fire restrictions),
September 19 - TRA Launch Insurance (Canceled - fire restrictions),
October 17 - NAR Launch Insurance, and 
November 7 - TRA Launch Insurance. (Canceled - too cold.  This may be rescheduled.)
With the exception of November, all dates are the third Saturday in the month.  I scheduled the November launch earlier, but left a little time after the previous launch to take care of household chores and earn our ways back to the rocket range!

Edited 3/31/2015 to indicate which launch insurance covers the launch.  A few years back Tripoli began requesting that we designate launch insurance.  We have a choice of designating an entire launch season at once (i.e. All NAR or all TRA) or designating for specific dates.  This year I designated alternating launch dates.  This allows us to include TRA Research Activities on those dates, including research motors for those Tripoli members who are L2 or above.  Rule changes by TRA and NAR now allow NAR members who do not belong to Tripoli, to launch at TRA launches even if research motors are flown, but members who belong only to NAR and not to TRA, may not make or fly research motors.

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