Forest Service issues Draft Decision for Cruzane Mountain Project
By Moosetrack Megan

Posted: September 28, 2020

SUPERIOR, Mont. – The Lolo National Forest has issued the draft Decision Notice for the
Cruzane Mountain project, a 3,790-acre project located on the Superior Ranger District in
Mineral County, approximately 3 miles west of Haugen and northeast of Saltese. The Cruzane
Mountain project area mostly falls within the wildland-urban interface and has been impacted
by insect and disease, creating unhealthy forest conditions that are at-risk of severe wildfire.
The project would improve these conditions by removing dead and diseased vegetation and
promoting wildfire-resilient and insect-resistant tree species.
“The selected alternative will decrease the risk of high-severity wildfire in key areas nearby
communities,” said Carole Johnson, Superior District Ranger. “The suite of management tools
will work together to not only improve the forest health but prepare the landscape for
disturbances such as wildfire and insects in the future.”
The project will utilize a variety of management tools to improve forest health conditions such
as commercial regeneration harvests on 981 acres where large, legacy ponderosa pine, western
larch and western white pine would be left to promote a fire-resilient species composition.
Additionally, 471 acres of commercial thinning would work to reduce stand density and
promote the growth of healthy trees; 77 acres of pre-commercial thinning would support the
growth of healthy young trees; and 13-acres of improvement cuts would be used to shift forest
species composition to longer-lived, wildfire-resilient and insect and disease-resistant species.
Wood products harvested from the project would be sold to contribute to local economies.
Harvest and thinning operations would be complemented with prescribed burning to reduce
fuel-loading, prepare areas for planting after regeneration harvest, and promote regeneration of
healthy understory.
Another important feature of the project is that it would create fuel breaks along National
Forest System Road 288 to protect infrastructure and access routes in the event of a future
wildfire. The project also includes road maintenance, reconstruction, construction, road storage
and decommissioning of already closed roads. No change in existing public motorized access
within the project area is being considered.
Issuing of the Draft Decision Notice initiates a 45-day objection period. Objections will be
accepted only from those who have previously submitted specific written comments regarding
the proposed project during scoping or other designated opportunity for public comment in
accordance with §218.5(a).
Lolo National Forest
Web: https://www.fs.usda.gov/lolo
Facebook: @lolonationalforest
Twitter: @lolonf News Release
Media Contact: Kate Jerman (406) 552-7944
Katelyn.jerman@usda.gov
Written objections, including attachments, must be filed via mail, express delivery, or messenger
service to: Objection Reviewing Officer, USDA Forest Service, Northern Region, 26 Fort Missoula
Road, Missoula, MT 59804; FAX to (406) 329-3411; EMAIL to appeals-northern-regionaloffice@fs.fed.us. Please state “Cruzane Mountain” in the subject line when providing electronic
objections, or on the envelope when replying by mail.
The opportunity to object ends 45 days following the date of publication of the legal notice in
The Missoulian. The publication date of the legal notice in the newspaper of record is the
exclusive means for calculating the time to file an objection. Those wishing to object should not
rely upon dates or timeframe information provided by another so