The North Fork Gets It's Day

This ain’t no April Fools joke folks, it’s the real deal.

On Friday, March 29th, Montana’s newest member of the Congressional Delegation, Congressman Steve Daines made a fantastic decision: He’s introducing legislation that will help protect one of Montana’s best rivers: The North Fork of the Flathead River.

Folks have been working tirelessly to protect the western flank of the Crown of the Continent, and this legislation has what we like to see: common sense, meaningful protections and it still gives folks the ability to manage the lands they work and play in. The North Fork is renowned for its cutthroat fishing, floating and wildlife. Monster muleys who live in the dark holes that make every hunter wake up with the night sweats still run around the Valley. Booner black bears, bighorn sheep wolves and elk help round out one of the wildest hunting experiences in Montana. The North Fork has it all and we’re damned happy to see this bill get the bipartisan support it deserves.

All those critters and all that water mean something bigger than what you can put in your crosshairs though. It means that the future of the North Fork and the people who live there can count on a stable economic situation rather than rely on the boom and bust mentality that comes with foolish developmentl; and that’s a good thing.

Congressman Daines had this to say about his bill:

“As a fifth-generation Montanan, I know the importance of our state’s rivers and mountains to Montanans’ outdoors heritage — because they’re part of my way of life, too,” he said. “The North Fork watershed is of critical value to our state’s outdoors heritage and the tourism economy in the Flathead Valley, and it’s important that we work together to protect this valuable resource.”
We agree wholeheartedly.

Threatened by poorly thought out development in its headwaters, Conservation groups and our Senators have been working tirelessly to make sure that this economic engine remains well tuned by protecting the entire corridor from unnecessary mining and drilling. There are some places that are worth more than the amount of gas or coal that could be stripped off of them. The North Fork is definitely one of them. The economic engine that drives the Flathead is tourism. There is no doubt about that. Ensuring that one of the most cherished and visited pieces of public ground, even if it as the end of the road, remains an engine of growth is critical to ensuring Montana’s continued economic growth.

We are hopeful that Congressman Daines can continue this effort of endorsing solid, workable proposals when it comes to land use legislation. Our Stormy Kromer is tipped in your direction, Congressman.
Well done.

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Hellgate Hunters and Anglers
Our Mission is to conserve Montana's wildlife, wild places, and fair-chase hunting and fishing heritage.