A new group has been formed in Miles City, Montana Hunters for Access, as a way to thank landowners in Region 7 for taking part in the state’s Block Management Program. Block Management pays landowners to allow public hunting. Last year in Region 7, 321 landowners enrolled 243 Block Management Areas, according to Fish, Wildlife & Parks. That provided access to 2.03 million acres of land – 1.48 million of which was private property connected to another 546,000 acres of state and federal lands. Hunters John Kuntz, Matt Rinella and Miles Muscha wanted to do more to thank landowners involved in the program. So they formed a group that sought out donations to provide landowners. They are also developing a list of volunteers to provide help for ranchers and farmers on work projects. Anyone in the state can volunteer or donate to the cause. Kuntz, Rinella and Muscha are also hoping their idea catches on in other regions of the state. One of the concerns the hunters cited as a reason to form the group is a new company that offers to rent out access to private land, much like Airbnb rents out homes. The company is expanding in Montana with recent funding from the Wilks brothers, one of the largest landowners in the state. To read more about Montana Hunters for Access, check out my story at https://billingsgazette.com/outdoors/.
Written by Brett French | Outdoors Editor | Billings Gazette