Bozeman Municipal Watershed Project Update
By Moosetrack Megan

Posted: September 22, 2023

Bozeman, MT, September 20, 2023— Starting today, the Custer Gallatin National Forest will be conducting road maintenance and reconstruction in the Moser Creek area up Hyalite Canyon. There will be no closure associated with the Moser Creek work, however temporary delays can be expected. In addition, several leftover log decks will be hauled out from last season’s harvest activities. The public is advised to drive slow and use caution while in the Moser Creek area.

Continued road maintenance and reconstruction work is expected to start in the Bozeman Creek/Sourdough Canyon trail on Monday October 2nd through Friday October 6th, weather permitting. The temporary closure on Bozeman Creek trail will be from 7am-5:30pm and open to use outside those hours and dates. The closure is necessary to ensure public safety as road work is occurring in the area.

This road work is in preparation for helicopter fuel reduction activities, which could start later this fall. “This is another important phase of work, as part of the broader Bozeman Municipal Watershed (BMW) Project” said Bozeman District Ranger Corey Lewellen. “We recognize there will be some short-term impacts to access, but this work is critical in helping meet the goals of protecting the municipal watersheds.”

Forest users should also expect to see equipment in the area while work is ongoing. Additional short-term closures to the Sourdough/Bozeman Creek trail may be needed later this fall once helicopter operations begin. More info to come as that piece of the project gets closer.

This road and helicopter work is continued implementation of the BMW Project, funded by the Joint Chiefs Landscape Restoration Partnership, and in support of reducing hazardous fuels in a high risk fireshed. The project is situated south of Bozeman, in portions of the Hyalite and Bozeman Creek watersheds, and located in the wildland urban interface (WUI) on the Bozeman Ranger District, Custer Gallatin National Forest.

The Hyalite and Bozeman Creek drainages provide over 80% of the municipal water supply for the Bozeman community. The BMW Project aims to reduce the risk of severe and extensive wildfire, limit the amount of sediment and ash entering the water treatment facilities in the event of a fire, and increase public and firefighter safety. The project will also reduce risk of wildfire spread onto National Forest lands and bordering private land, ultimately increasing defensible space in the WUI.

To keep informed on project implementation and progress, follow the Bozeman Municipal Watershed page, and the Custer Gallatin National Forest on Facebook. For more information, please call the Bozeman Ranger District at 406-522-2520.

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