FWP News: Smith River permit application deadline is February 15
By angelamontana

Posted: January 3, 2023

GREAT FALLS – Permit applications to float the Smith River will be accepted through Feb. 15. The permit drawing will be held on Feb. 21.

Celebrated for its spectacular scenery, remote location and excellent fishing, floating the Smith River is one of Montana’s most sought-after outdoor recreation experiences. Permits are required to float the 59-mile section of river between Camp Baker and Eden Bridge and are issued each year through a lottery. Parties of up to 15 people can float with one permit. A person applying for a Smith River permit must be a minimum of 12 years of age at the time they submit their permit application. There is no age restriction to participate on a Smith River float trip.

Applicants can apply for a Smith River float permit online through the Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks Online Licensing System, and pay a $15 non-refundable permit application fee. Successful Smith River applicants will be notified via email shortly after the lottery drawing is conducted on Feb. 21.

Links within the notification email to successful applicants will allow them to download and print their float permit, as well as access vital and detailed information regarding their upcoming Smith River float. Lottery results will also be available online at stateparks.mt.gov. Those who receive a permit will be contacted by phone two days prior to their scheduled launch date to complete the registration process, which includes declaring boat camps and paying the appropriate float fees.

In addition to the permit lottery, the public may purchase as many $5 Super Permit chances as they wish. Montana State Parks issues one Super Permit each year through a separate lottery. The recipient of the Super Permit will be allowed to launch on any date of their choosing for that float season.

The opportunity to purchase chances for the Smith River Super Permit will be available through March 23. The Super Permit drawing will take place on March 29. Super Permit chances may be purchased online through FWP’s Online Licensing System.

For more information about Smith River State Park visit:  http://stateparks.mt.gov/smith-river/

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