TOWNSEND, MONT., March 30, 2018—Due to the public safety issue from numerous hazard trees within Skidway Campground, forest officials have decided to keep the campground closed for the 2018 season. This closure will allow contractors to remove those hazardous trees and clean-up the site for the public to be able to enjoy the following year.
Skidway Campground is beginning to experience tree mortality due to insects, diseases, and several types of root rot and stem decays of older trees that are collectively contributing to structural tree failures. These failures are resulting in trees, which appear to be healthy, breaking midway up the trunk and falling on nearby sites. Nearly one-third of the larger diameter trees within the campground will need to be removed, while the smaller diameter and healthier trees will be left on site.
A contractor is anticipated to begin hazard tree removal operations within the campground as soon as possible this summer.
Once the hazard trees are removed, some areas of Skidway campground will look more open, especially areas nearest the campsites. Since many of the hazard trees are located near individual camp/picnic sites, those areas will be more open with less shady conditions.
Enclosed are photos showing how some of the weakened trees have broken off; this is why these trees are hazardous and need to be removed before people can enjoy the campground. For more information, contact the Townsend Ranger District at 406-266-3425.