A new Wild and Scenic River management plan for portions of the Flathead River, including the North Fork, is in the works . . .
One of the most noticeable changes in the North Fork Flathead River drainage can be found on the river — at its put-in and take-out sites for floaters — and it is a change that is in part driving an effort to develop a new Wild and Scenic River management plan…
Vehicles loaded with rafts, kayaks and canoes are now a far more common sight than they were in 1980, when the current river management plan was developed. That came on the heels of portions of the North, South and Middle forks of the Flathead River being designated as Wild and Scenic rivers in 1976.
“It’s pretty old,” Hungry Horse-Glacier View District Ranger Rob Davies said of the river management plan. “We’re not saying it’s bad. There are elements that are very good in that plan. We don’t want to throw it out and start from scratch. We want to figure out what needs to change, what elements of that plan need fixing.”
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Larry talks about the effects of the wet spring weather and discusses safety on the river . . .
It appears that the professional foresters were correct — the lodgepole pine that seemed to be dying only weeks ago are already producing new, green needles. We still need to remember that the foresters also warned that several wet springs in a row could cause the death of some of these young pines.
So far, this spring seems wet to me. In fact, I’m told that Kalispell has had more than two inches of rain above normal for this year to date. I guess that lodgepole pine regeneration would not be hurt by some mortality, but I would prefer to do the thinning myself.
Even though I consider this a wet spring, so far I haven’t seen or heard anything that would indicate we could have any flooding on the North Fork…
Continue reading . . .
Yesterday’s Great Falls Tribune had a nice article on rafting the North Fork, including some useful background material . . .
For 59 miles, the North Fork of the Flathead River snakes from the Canadian border to its confluence with the Middle Fork.
It twists and turns along the western boundary of Glacier National Park through rich floodplains teeming with diverse greenery and wildlife.
Floaters on the robust river round each bend to new views of mountains, dappled with snow in early summer and waning to gold by fall.
Read the full article . . .