Group Bicycle Campsite, Shade Shelter and Concession suggested at Caverns
By Moosetrack Megan

Posted: August 21, 2019

Montana State Parks (stateparks.mt.gov) is seeking public comment on a draft Environmental Assessment (EA) for a proposed Group Bicycle Campsite, Shade Shelter and Concession Remodel at Lewis & Clark Caverns State Park near Three Forks, MT. Comments will be accepted through Friday, September 13th, 2019 at 5pm.

 

The Environmental Assessment would cover three different projects at Lewis & Clark caverns; develop a group use bicycle campsite, constructing a shade shelter, and renovating the park concession building.

 

  1. In order to address increasing demand to accommodate touring bicyclists, support the local tourism economy and adapt to changing visitor demands, Montana State Parks proposes to construct a new group bicycle campsite. The shared group bicycle campsite would be available on a first-come, first-served basis. While these sites would be designed specifically for bicyclists, the sites may also appeal to other non-motorized users, such as hikers or campers arriving by human- powered watercraft, such as kayaks.

 

  1. Lewis & Clark Caverns State Park expanded cave tour options in 2017 to allow visitors physically unable to complete the standard cave tour, that consists of walking two miles and climbing 600 steps.  Implemented in 2017, Paradise Tour served 1,304 visitors.  In 2018, the park increased the number of times the tours were being offered from two to four times per day and served 3,339 visitors.  These Paradise Tours have proven most popular with not only the physically challenged but also for families with very small children. The construction of a shade shelter will give added protection, from the sun and changing weather conditions, to vulnerable populations waiting for their tours to begin.

 

  1. The proposed renovation to the concession building will address the increased use and demands of park visitors. The renovation will allow our concessionaire to expand menu options and serve a variety of food options and choices more unique to Montana.

 

This proposal is a collaborative between Montana State Parks and the Montana State Parks Foundation to enhance park visitor amenities at the park and expanding the capacity of our park concessionaire.

 

To view a full copy of the environmental assessment visit stateparks.mt.gov and click “Public Comments & Notices”.

 

A public comment period will be open for 30 days and comments will be accepted through Friday, September 13, 2019 at 5pm. To comment visit stateparks.mt.gov and click “Public Comments & Notices” or email to Betsey.LaBroad@mt.gov

The public may also send written comments Lewis & Clark Caverns Group Bicycle Campsite, Shade Shelter and Concession Remodel EA, c/o Betsey LaBroad, 1400 South 19th Ave, Bozeman, MT., 59718.

For questions about the draft EA and/or the public comment process, contact Betsey LaBroad, Region 3 Park Manager, at (406) 994-3552 or Betsey.LaBroad@mt.gov