Forest Service plans land swap for 3,335 acres of Crazy Mountain lands
By Moosetrack Megan

Posted: October 7, 2019

The Custer Gallatin National Forest has released an environmental assessment proposing to exchange approximately 3,225 acres of National Forest System (NFS) lands in the southern end of the Crazy Mountains for approximately 3,797 acres of private land.  The Crazy Mountains are located northeast of Livingston, Montana and northwest of Big Timber, Montana. 

 

The proposal would consolidate NFS lands to improve road and trail access to public lands in the Crazy Mountains.  The Forest will host an open house in Livingston on October 23, 2019 at the City County Building Community Room, 414 E Callender Street, Livingston, MT from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. to further discuss the proposal and answer questions.

 

The private land parcels are currently owned by three separate entities, Crazy Mountain Ranch, Rock Creek Ranch, and Wild Eagle Ranch.  The proposal presented in the environmental assessment would:

  • Create a large block of clearly identifiable consolidated, NFS lands for public use and benefit, and increased management efficiency;
  • Acquire Rock Lake and Smeller Lake to provide recreation opportunities including fishing, hiking, hunting, camping and scenic viewing;
  • Secure fisheries habitat at Rock Lake and Smeller Lake for Yellowstone cutthroat trout;
  • Secure a permanent trail easement and the relocation and construction of large portions of the Cottonwood Lowline Trail #272 onto the consolidated NFS lands;
  • Secure a permanent road easement on the Robinson Bench Road #193 to provide public access to the Rock Creek North trailhead; and
  • Secure a permanent administrative easement for the Rock Creek Road #199 and North Hammond Creek Road #1958 for agency emergency and project access (including weed control, restoration activities, and permit administration).

The environmental assessment and proposed action is available on-line at: http://www.fs.usda.gov/project/?project=56687The notice and supporting documentation is also available for review at the Custer Gallatin National Forest Office located at 10 East Babcock, Bozeman, MT 59971.  For additional information please contact Dee Closson at 406-599-7752, dee.closson@usda.gov.

 

Comments should be received by November 18, 2019 and can be submitted via mail, fax, or in person (Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., excluding holidays) to Forest Supervisor Mary Erickson, PO Box 130, Bozeman, MT 59771. Electronic comments, including attachments, can be submitted to   https://cara.ecosystem-management.org/Public//CommentInput?Project=56687