Tag Archives: John Frederick

John Frederick, “The icon of the North Fork”

John Frederick, NFPA founder and perennial president, got some well-deserved recognition in Larry Wilson’s Hungry Horse News column this week . . .

Everyone who has spent any time on the North Fork has to know John Frederick. In the last few years, his friends have been worried about his health, and everyone has marveled at the level of his physical activity.

Just this past summer, he managed an all-day mule ride from Whale Creek to Thompson-Seton Lookout and back. That a minor achievement when compared to the multiple days he spent helping Bill Walker and others reopen the Coal Ridge Trail. By all accounts, the trail had not been maintained for nearly 40 years.

His activity level seems all the more remarkable when you see him brace himself to stand from a sitting position. It wasn’t always this way.

Although I have often considered John a relative newcomer to the North Fork, he has actually been here for nearly 40 years. He is a self-described environmentalist and was one of the founders of the North Fork Preservation Association and has been the president of that group most of the time since it was started.

Read more . . .

Diverse stakeholders recommend Whitefish Range forest plan

The Flathead Beacon just posted a lengthy, well-written article by Tristan Scott about the just-concluded Whitefish Range Partnership agreement.

Like the earlier Missoulian piece, this one is also recommended reading . . .

Bob Brown, a former secretary of state and longtime Whitefish legislator, pulled into the snow-caked parking lot outside Ed and Mully’s Restaurant at the base of Big Mountain, his car bearing a bumper sticker that read, “Compromise is not a Four Letter Word.”

Ever the diplomat, Brown was there to broker a meeting organized by a coalition of longtime adversaries turned unlikely bedfellows — tree huggers and tree cutters, eco-warriors and timber sawyers, hikers, horsemen, mountain bikers, cabin owners and nearly everyone else with a stake in the management of public lands on the Flathead National Forest.

They represented three-dozen interest groups who historically clashed over public land use on Montana’s forests; who for decades pitted wilderness against timber production, non-motorized against motorized recreation, commercial interests against wildlife. They were advocates accustomed to digging in their heels, entrenched in their ideologies and not given to making concessions.

Read more . . .

John Frederick: North Fork Protection Vital

The following letter to the editor by NFPA President John Frederick was posted to the Flathead Beacon’s web site July 19 . . .

Republican Congressman Steve Daines has introduced HR 2259, a North Fork Watershed Protection Act, and he deserves much credit for doing so.

Democratic Sens. Max Baucus and Jon Tester had earlier introduced virtually identical legislation (Senate Bill 255). It passed out of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee on June 18 of this year.

The legislation withdraws federal minerals from future leasing only on Forest Service land in the North Fork (and a slice of federal land in the Middle Fork along the river) not currently under valid existing leases. More than 200,000 acres of leases have been voluntarily relinquished that represents 80 percent of the leased land.

When this legislation is enacted it will complete a gentleman’s agreement between British Columbia and Montana to not allow leasing of minerals in the Flathead of B. C. and the North Fork of the Flathead because of concerns about wildlife and clean water. The Canadians were considerably faster to do their part of the agreement.

Steve Daines is a Republican. He has not let partisan politics get in the way of working with Democrats toward a worthwhile goal. His efforts will ensure quicker action on the legislation and I wish to thank him.

John Frederick