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Custer Gallatin National Forest

Custer Gallatin National Forest Plan Nearly Final

Jul 22, 2020

The Custer Gallatin National Forest recently released a plan that will guide conservation, recreation and industry decisions on more than 3 million acres for the next decade or more.

The Custer Gallatin National Forest stretches from the northwest corner of Yellowstone National Park to South Dakota. It’s home to Montana’s highest peaks, iconic wildlife and the Stillwater Complex, the only primary producer of palladium and platinum in the U.S.

Lightning, warm temperatures and dry conditions are keeping firefighters busy in the region. YPR’s Kay Erickson has the details.

Update: An earlier version of this story stated Rob Gregoire won, rather than settled the court case in 2017. YPR regrets the error.

A group of unlikely bedfellows is trying to drum up support for a plan it says will reduce conflict in the Crazy Mountains and improve access to public land in southwest Montana. The plan includes land swaps and a new trail.


The Custer Gallatin National Forest will open part of a controversial trail Friday in the Crazy Mountains. The range northeast of Livingston is also part of the agency’s recent proposal for a land swap.


The Custer Gallatin National Forest Monday postponed several controlled burns in southwest Montana due to an incoming winter storm.

It’s been about a year since lightning started a fire that burned almost 4,500 acres in the Lee Metcalf Wilderness and Yellowstone National Park. Local fire managers and ecologists invited journalists to see how the burn site is recovering and learn how fire plays a role on the landscape.


For the first time in thirty years, the U.S. Forest Service is updating its management plan for the Custer-Gallatin National Forest. It’ll determine where you can mountain bike, build new trails and harvest timber, among other things.

U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke.
Courtesy Ryan Zinke

BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke has scheduled a visit next week to Montana, where he's expected to finalize a proposal to block new mining claims on the forested public lands just outside Yellowstone National Park.

Zinke, a former Montana congressman, plans to sign documents and make a "major announcement" about conservation on Monday in the Paradise Valley area, Zinke spokeswoman Heather Swift said Thursday.

Swift declined to give further details except to say it was an issue Zinke had been working on for years.

Map of the Howe Ridge Fire perimeter, September 20, 2018.
Inciweb

As Montana's fire season winds to a close, crews are closing-in on the handful of fires still burning across Western Montana.

Inciweb


A weekend of lower temperature and higher humidity brought no substantial new wildfire starts across the state, and allowed firefighters to make a dent in existing blazes. 

Forecasters say to expect increasing fire danger and more smoke as the week progresses. 

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