Tag Archives: Big Creek

Bull Trout project in Big Creek drainage; public feedback requested

Bull Trout - Joel Sartore/National Geographic Stock with Wade Fredenberg/USFWS
Bull Trout – Joel Sartore/National Geographic Stock with Wade Fredenberg/USFWS

Rob Davies, the Hungry Horse/Glacier View district ranger, is asking for public feedback on a small, low-impact project in the Big Creek drainage to improve conditions for Bull Trout.  If possible, they’d really like to get this accomplished in April, before the stream flows really get going. This means they are looking for public comments by March 30.

Here’s what Rob had to say in his email (lightly edited), followed by the full text of the project letter . . .

We will be issuing a NEPA decision for a small simple project that was presented at the Inter-local Meeting last February.

We would like to know if anyone has concerns or wishes to provide comments on this project…

Essentially the State and the Forest Service wants to breach a log jam, and several small beaver dams where migrating bull trout were blocked from upstream movement to their normal spawning area (last fall). The work would be accomplished using a Spider Backhoe…… if you never have seen this type of heavy equipment it is really interesting…….. it’s essentially a small excavator but instead of using steel tracks, it moves on 4 robotic-like legs so that soil and vegetation disturbance is very minimal.

We would like to complete this work before peak runoff occurs this spring so natural flows will help scour and maintain the channel. Normally bull trout projects never remove or disturb large wood in streams but in this case, the Flathead bull trout populations are so depressed from other Flathead Lake issues…… doing all that we can to assure spawning success is important.

Please provide comments, by email, in writing, or by phone no later than March 30th, 2016.

Rob’s contact information:

Rob Davies , District Ranger
Flathead National Forest
Hungry Horse – Glacier View Ranger Districts
PO Box 190340
Hungry Horse, MT, MT 59919
Phone: 406-387-3801
Email: rdavies@fs.fed.us

Continue reading Bull Trout project in Big Creek drainage; public feedback requested

Celebrating History of the North Fork at Big Creek, Aug 22

Tyler McRae, Program Manager for the Big Creek Outdoor Education Center, passed along this announcement for a big “Celebrating History of the North Fork at Big Creek” event this weekend. Check it out if you’re interested in coming down to Big Creek on the 22nd of this month for a good BBQ dinner, some exchange of stories about the old days of this place, and/or breakfast, lunch, and some trail projects. There’s also a breakfast event Sunday morning.

Big Creek Creek Ranger Station History Event

‘Work day’ event part of Baucus’ efforts to support North Fork

The Flathead Beacon has a good write-up, with photos, of Sen. Max Baucus “work day” last Tuesday near Big Creek . . .

Chipping away at the sun baked dirt with a Pulaski axe, a hard-hat clad Max Baucus graded out the slope of a hiking trail high above the North Fork Flathead River near the Big Creek tributary, buffing out a ribbon of single track that tops out on Glacier View Mountain but hasn’t been maintained since fire scoured the hillside in 2001.

In many ways, it was another day at the office for Montana’s senior senator, but instead of walking the halls of Congress he climbed steep switchbacks, chatting with and sweating alongside young members of a Montana Conservation Corps trail crew instead of running the Senate Finance Committee.

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The Glacier Institute at 30

The Great Falls Tribune posted an excellent article on the Glacier Institute . . .

Justin Barth’s first experience with the Glacier Institute as a sixth grader left a lasting impression.

“I remember putting on waders, hopping into Big Creek, finding bugs and looking at them under a microscope,” said the Kalispell native. “At the time, seeing them magnified kind of scared me.”

Ten years later, as program manager of the Institute’s West Glacier Field Camp, he’s eagerly leading others through the same discoveries…

For 30 years, the Glacier Institute has made the natural world accessible, fascinating and memorable to tens of thousands of children and adults. That several of its seasonal staff, like Barth, first attended as schoolchildren, is a testament to its enduring influence.

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Glacier Institute wins $20K for alternate energy curriculum at Big Creek

The Glacier Institute won a nice grant to buy equipment and develop an alternate energy curriculum at their Big Creek education center . . .

A month-long online voting contest among nonprofits in all 50 states has earned the Glacier Institute a $20,000 grant for its Outdoor Education Center located on the North Fork of the Flathead.

The local nonprofit was selected in September as Montana’s lone finalist in the Tom’s of Maine “50 States for Good” program, which helps support a suite of outdoor-oriented community projects nationwide.

The award, announced Thursday, will fund the Glacier Institute’s brand new alternative energy curriculum, which teaches students how to preserve and better use Montana’s natural resources.

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Big Creek water quality restoration complete

Here’s the Missoulian’s report on the Big Creek water quality restoration project . . .

A major tributary to the North Fork of the Flathead River was removed from a list of impaired Montana water bodies Friday, becoming the first state stream to meet the standards for delisting. Officials with the Hungry Horse Ranger District and the Montana Department of Environmental Quality announced that Big Creek is the first water body to complete a full water quality restoration process after it was added to a list of sediment-impaired waters in 1996.

Hungry Horse District Ranger Jimmy DeHerrera said the delisting is a major accomplishment, and the result of a watershed restoration plan that began nine years ago. The plan involved decommissioning some 60 miles of forest logging roads, removing 47 culverts and replacing an additional 19, improving 89 miles of roads to decrease storm water runoff, and replanting 25 acres of eroding uplands.

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Big Creek officially completes water quality restoration

Big Creek, a major tributary of the North Fork, has now officially completed a restoration process aimed at reducing sediment contamination. . . .

Big Creek is the first stream in the state to have completed a water quality restoration process aimed at reducing sediments.

the Montana Department of Environmental Quality and Flathead National Forest announced the news Thursday that Big Creek had been removed from the state’s list of impaired waters.

Recent monitoring data has shown that sediment and stream conditions in Big Creek, a major tributary to the North Fork of the Flathead River, now are similar to conditions in streams with minimal human impacts.

That wasn’t the case in 1996, when Big Creek was added to a list of Montana waters with impaired water quality.

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