This is YOUR chance to play a role in how our public lands are managed and ensure that sportsmen and women have a say about the places where we love to hunt and fish
The Helena-Lewis and Clark National Forest encompasses over 2.8 million acres in seventeen different Montana counties—from the Snowies and the Highwoods to the Upper Blackfoot and the Rocky Mountain Front. These landscapes provide some of the finest hunting, fishing, and outdoor recreation opportunities in central and western Montana, as well as important habitat for big game, upland birds, and wild trout.
Currently, the U.S. Forest Service is revising the plan that will determine the future management of these lands. The Helena-Lewis and Clark National Forest’s Draft Forest Plan and Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) was released in June with a 90-day public comment period, and sportsmen and women must get involved to ensure that the best habitats are conserved and public access for hunting and fishing is maintained.
Please attend one of eleven local public meetings in the next few weeks (see schedule below). These events will offer updates on the planning process, allow the public to share their ideas and opinions on the draft plan, and explain ways for interested citizens to stay involved.
The best way to see that our priorities are included in the plan is to have a presence and provide input at these meetings. Meeting dates, locations, and times, as well as suggested talking points are listed below.
Thank you for taking the time to support our public lands.
Where and When
|Stanford||July 23, 2018||11am – 1pm||Stanford City Hall, 102 Central Ave|
|Lewistown||July 23, 2018||5 – 7pm||BLM Office, 920 NE Main St.|
|Harlowton||July 24, 2018||11am – 1pm||Harlowton Library, 13 Central Ave N.|
|White Sulphur Springs||July 24, 2018||5 – 7pm||WSS High School Cafeteria, 15 First Ave SE|
|Helena||July 25, 2018||5 – 7pm||Radisson Hotel, 2301 Colonial Dr.|
|Boulder||July 26, 2018||11am – 1pm||Boulder Fairgrounds Volunteer Hall, 21 Whitetail Rd.|
|Townsend||July 26, 2018||5 – 7pm||Townsend Library, 201 N. Spruce St.|
|Lincoln||July 30, 2018||5 – 7pm||Lincoln Community Hall, 404 Main St.|
|Choteau||August 1, 2018||5 – 7pm||Stage Stop Inn, 1005 Main Ave. N.|
|Great Falls||August 2, 2018||5 – 7pm||Civic Center, 2 Park Dr. S.|
|Browning||TBD||TBD||Check back for updates|
Suggested Talking Points
- Conservation of unfragmented, functional habitats: These high-quality habitats benefit wild trout populations, and they provide the cover needed to support Montana’s 5-week general elk season. Backcountry public lands also enable hunters to get away from the crowds and enjoy a quality hunting experience.
- Wildlife and fisheries restoration and enhancement: We encourage and support efforts to prioritize active habitat restoration and enhancement on the landscape to benefit cold water fisheries, big game and other wildlife species.
- Public access: Public access is necessary for outdoor recreation. We encourage the forest service to maintain existing public access important for sportsmen and women, while expanding public access to parts of the forest that are difficult to reach because of surrounding private lands. Road access needs should be balanced with the habitat needs of deer and elk.
Photo courtesy of USFS Northern Region