Kalispell, MT — Flathead National Forest, Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation, and winning bidder St. Onge Logging of Kalispell, Montana are conducting work on the Liger Good Neighbor Authority Timber Sale near Hungry Horse Reservoir.
Beginning today, recreation access will temporarily change as a result of the sale. The forest has issued a temporary motorized closure order for East Side Reservoir Road #38. The forest anticipates that the road will be closed to vehicle traffic through early spring to protect public and crew safety during cutting and hauling operations on and near the plowed road. Over snow vehicles will be able to use the road to mile post 37.5 on Saturdays and Sundays while the closure is in effect. The road is closed beyond this point to all motorized use annually from December 1 to May 14 to protect winter wildlife habitat.
Winter recreation parking on Road #38 will be available at the Desert Mountain parking area just outside Martin City or at the junction with Abbot Bay Road, Forest Road #5301, approximately five miles south of Martin City.
Snowmobilers who plan on using this road on the weekends should use caution on the plowed road by staying to the right side, and riding single file at a moderate speed. Timber sale operators will not haul on weekends, but may be plowing or conducting other work. The road will be open to snowmobilers each weekend from 5:00 pm on Friday – 12:01 am Monday.
This is a popular snowmobile route, and people looking for other snowmobile opportunities in the area during weekdays should consider Desert Mountain trails as an alternative. In addition, Flathead National Forest offers several popular snowmobile areas with groomed and ungroomed trails forest-wide. Snowmobile access information maps and groomed trail maps are available at Flathead National Forest ranger district offices in Hungry Horse, Kalispell, and Bigfork, MT. The maps outline snowmobile routes and areas by ranger district and groomed trails accessing state and national forest lands in the Flathead Valley area.
The Liger Sale is part of the Hungry Lion Project that the forest issued a decision on in 2018. The Liger Sale uses the Good Neighbor Authority (GNA), which was part of the 2018 Farm Bill and allows the U.S. Forest Service to partner with state agencies to achieve forest management objectives and restoration. The sale is the first to use GNA on Flathead National Forest.
“We’re excited to have this project underway,” said Hungry Horse Glacier View District Ranger Rob Davies. “This is an innovative new partnership with the State of Montana and a unique opportunity for one of our local timber businesses.”
People can read the closure order, view the associated map, and monitor access changes by checking the Alerts & Notices section of Flathead National Forest’s website, or by following the forest on Facebook or Twitter.
For more information about East Side Reservoir Road access, contact the Hungry Horse Glacier View Ranger District at 406.387.3800.