Sportsmen and Montana BLM Lands
For most American sportsmen, the essence of Montana is the shrill challenging bugle of a bull elk echoing in a remote valley or the clear light of September on a crystal clear mountain river. Outdoorsmen who know the state well have a larger view- 30 million acres of public lands to wander, from snowclad alpine peaks to pronghorn stalks on native grass prairies, to the thunder and cackle of sharptail grouse busting free of the buffaloberry in some lost coulee. Montana is arguably the crown jewel of America’s hunting and fishing heritage and future, and the 8 million acres of our public lands managed by the Bureau of Land Management are a critical facet of that jewel. Such prominence means that American sportsmen will need to be extraordinarily vigilant about what is happening here. These treasured wildlife-rich landscapes, and the 34,000 jobs, and $2.5 billion generated by the thriving outdoor industry that depends on them, must be safeguarded by the people who know and love them best.
Arrow Creek Breaks backcountry
Judith Mountains backcountry
Crooked Creek backcountry
Cemetery Road backcountry
Click map to enlarge
Sportsmen from across America want to see these outstanding Montana opportunities and assets conserved and are asking the Bureau of Land Management to safeguard the most special places on this landscape as ‘backcountry conservation areas’ (BCAs) through the public planning process. BCA management would:
• safeguard intact and undeveloped backcountry lands with priority fish and wildlife habitat and dispersed hunting opportunities;
• focus management activities on projects that restore habitats and control noxious weeds;
• maintain important public access to public lands;
• maintain traditional uses of the land that are important to rural communities.
BCA efforts are currently underway in Montana as the Lewistown Field Offices of the BLM develop a new Resource Management Plan that will determine the future of these lands for decades to come.
The TRCP is working with hunters and anglers to persuade the BLM to identify lands that should be conserved as BCAs to safeguard our high quality public lands habitat and favorite hunting and fishing areas for today’s sportsmen and future generations.