Montana Public Radio

Belmont Creek

The BLM bought 7,300 acres of former timberland in the Belmont Creek area near Missoula.
Courtesy BLM

A land conservation group says it has helped ensure that 7,300 acres of land in western Montana’s Blackfoot River corridor remains in public hands.

The Nature Conservancy says the acquisition, just east of Missoula in the Belmont Creek area, is due in large part to funding from the Land and Water Conservation Fund. LWCF uses royalties from offshore oil and gas development to fund outdoor projects.

The Blackfoot River near Belmont Creek.
Josh Burnham (CC-BY-NC) https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/

13,000 acres of land in the lower Blackfoot watershed may become public.

Tuesday, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) released an environmental assessment on a proposal to do that in collaboration with The Nature Conservancy. A 30-day public comment period to evaluate the impacts of acquiring the land is now open.