KECI 7-18-16 Project proposes management of Blackfoot-Clearwater

Jul 18, 2016
BCSP proposes management of land

MISSOULA, Mont. - The Blackfoot Clearwater Stewardship Project aims to ensure management of areas within the Blackfoot-Clearwater Valley, while also protecting the livelihood of locals.

It is a project over 10 years in the making.

"It's a bill that all Montanans seem to be involved in," said Jane Pargiter, of EcoFlight. "Whether they (work in) timber, recreation, snowmobilers, mountain bikers, wilderness advocates, outfitters and hunters. It's a really made-in-Montana bill."

Here's a look at what supporters want to see preserved:


Areas circled in red indicate the proposed wilderness areas. Just to the north lies the Lincoln Scapegoat Wilderness, which was designated in 1972.

"We should have included that into that particular wilderness act, but it didn't happen," said retired outfitter Smoke Elser. "So what we're trying to do is add this to it, because we think it's a very important piece of land that needs protection for future generations in particular."

The project centers around three components: timber and restoration, recreation and conservation.

The BCSP will have to start by going through Montana's congressional delegation. Then it will be brought to Washington, where Congress will have to sign off on it.