Dry Riverside Project Advances to Next Steps
By Moosetrack Megan

Posted: November 9, 2023

Kalispell, MT, November 8, 2023 —The Flathead National Forest announced today that the Dry Riverside Project has moved to the next phase of its planning process with the release of the draft decision notice. This project is located east of the Hungry Horse Reservoir on both the Hungry Horse and Spotted Bear Ranger Districts.

The draft decision proposes 7,420 acres of vegetation treatments and fuels reduction that will help to improve the diversity and resilience of our vegetative communities, promote forest resiliency, reduce the intensity of fire, and limit impacts to natural resources. In addition, the project will provide timber for the local economy. Commercial treatments are proposed on approximately half of those acres. Non-commercial treatments proposed for the other half including thinning, burning, fuels reduction, and whitebark pine planting.

This project also includes numerous road management and maintenance activities, and the decommissioning of approximately 0.5 miles of Forest Service Road 1625 (Logan Creek Hoke Creek Road).

The Flathead National Forest has received numerous comments since announcing the project in November of 2022. Some commenters supported the active management, fuels reduction, and the timber harvest benefits for the local economy. Other commenters expressed concern for fish and wildlife species, particularly bull trout, grizzly bear, lynx, and wolverine. The project team considered all comments. The alternative presented in the draft decision notice meets project objectives while minimizing effects to the Forest’s resources.

This week, the project enters an objection period. Objections must be submitted within 45 calendar days following the publication of the legal notice in the Daily Inter Lake. The objection period allows people who have previously submitted timely, specific written comments during any designated opportunity for public comment to file an objection to the draft decision, unless the objection concerns an issue that arose after the designated opportunities for comment.

More information about the project and the opportunity to object can be found on the Forest’s website at https://www.fs.usda.gov/project/?project=63176.

For questions, please contact project leader Gary Blazejewski at gary.blazejewski@usda.gov or (406) 387-3827.

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