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Mar 17 2015

Keep the Swans and Missions Wild

Help us shape the future of the Flathead National Forest and its wildlands for the next generation

Around MWA

The Flathead National Forest just released their draft management plan. This is big news for all of us! The plan sets the stage for how the Flathead Forest and its wild lands in the Swan and Mission Mountains will be managed over the next 20 years.

 

A map of the Swan and Mission Mountains showing current and proposed wilderness.

The draft plan provides protection for several deserving areas. For instance, Flathead Forest Service has largely adopted the Whitefish Range Partnership’s Wilderness recommendation in the Whitefish Range. This is over 80,000 acres of new wilderness! The Flathead also recognized two new areas along the Mission Mountain Wilderness that should be protected.

Thank you, Flathead National Forest, for recognizing the value of these wild lands.

But the plan needs improvement. MWA is focused on protecting specific wild lands in the Swan and Mission Mountains. We need your help.

The time is now to urge the Forest Service to include Wilderness protection for three wild and deserving areas in the Swans and Missions. Please tell the Forest Service to:

  1.  Expand the Jewel Basin Recommended Wilderness to the west and protect the wild Swan Front. Bring the wilderness boundary down to the valley floor.
  2. Extend the Bob Marshall Wilderness north to include the wild and restored Bunker Creek and upper Sullivan Creek – critical areas for grizzlies, elk, mountain goats, and other wildlife species.
  3. Widen the Mission Mountain Wilderness Area to include the wildlife corridor of Sunset Ridge, the critical bull trout spawning beds of Elk and Hemlock creeks, and the rugged, species-rich lower slopes.

You can also tell the Forest Service why wilderness is important to you and why we should protect more of it.

Please email your comments to flatheadplanrevision@fs.fed.us or snail mail to:

Flathead National Forest Supervisors Office
Attention: Forest Plan Revision
650 Wolfpack Way
Kalispell, MT 59901

The deadline for submitting comments is May 15, 2015.

The Swan and Mission Mountains inspire us every day. They provide pure water, rich habitat for diverse wildlife, and incredible outdoor recreation. These mountains explain why northwestern Montana is such a special place to live.

-Amy Robinson, MWA's northwest Montana field director