View of Swan Range
Help Stop Large Commercial Events on the Flathead National Forest!

Your comments are needed NOW to help stop a 700-person trail-running event and help shape commercial guiding on the Flathead National Forest!

The Flathead has requested public comment on 12 Special Use Permits it is proposing for recreational events, shuttles and guiding services this summer.

Among them is Whitefish Legacy Partners' request for a permit to again run its trail-running race from Whitefish to the top of Big Mountain and back, but this time with up to 400 runners and an additional 300 spectators and volunteers! (These numbers provided by the Forest Service are inconsistent with WLP's permit application).

Foys to Blacktail Trails appears to be repeating the 100-trail-runner-maximum race it held last year, when retired FWS Grizzly Bear Recovery Coordinator Chris Servheen wrote in opposition to these risky foot races in bear habitat.

UPDATE JULY 11, 2020: A trail-runner physically collided with a grizzly bear in Glacier National Park, but was lucky to escape with minor injuries as the forgiving bear ran off. This should not become a huge spectator sport via Forest Service special use permits!

Also among the slew of SUPs are requests for guided tours for ATVs, hikers and bikers, as well as shuttle services - in critical wildlife habitats and some on roads closed to protect wildlife security!

Here are some suggestions for your comments, which must be submitted by May 1:

1. Do not permit trail-running races due to the documented increased risk to people, bears and other wildlife. It also sends the wrong message about how people should safely recreate in the habitat of bears and mountain lions.

2. Do permit slow-paced hiking and biking activities that help people get heart-healthy exercise while teaching responsible conduct in the habitat of bears and mountain lions.

3. Do not permit ATV tours, van tours and other motorized events that burn fossil fuels and hasten climate change in the name of recreation.

4. Do not permit commercially guided hiking and biking tours on roads closed to motorized use to provide wildlife security. These roads already receive non-commercial human use. Additional commercial use will result in even less wildlife security.

5. Do not permit large group tours and events where COVID-19 social distancing requirements cannot be met. Montana is currently among the least infected states in the country and we'd like to keep it that way.

Please send your comments by May 1 to all three of the following Ranger District addresses:

comments-northern-flathead-tally-lake@usda.gov

comments-northern-flathead-hungry-horse-glacier-view@usda.gov

comments-northern-flathead-swan-lake@usda.gov

Click here to read our 4-page letter to the Flathead.

Click here for our single page of additional concerns after seeing the permit applications.

Click here for the Flathead's brief description of the proposed permits.

THANK YOU for taking a moment to comment on these issues important to the health of people and wildlife!

Click here for the Daily Inter Lake news article.

Click here for the Hungry Horse News article.

Click here for two critical letters to editors: 1. Robert Hermes led and largely funded the establishment of the Lakeside to Blacktail Trail and, though a long-distance runner himself, says "trails in the national forest are just not the right venue" for marathon races; 2. Carol Edwards, a resident of Polebridge, lays out how the public has been given "short shrift and silenced before they ever got a chance to speak" on these permit issues.

Click here for a Hungry Horse News column opposing the SUPs and process.

Click here for a Missoulian article about Forest Service directives to issue more special use permits more quickly to "be more responsible to customer needs."

Scroll down to view the maps and supplemental information we've been able to obtain from the Forest Service thus far. (You may need to click on "Read Full Article" to make them appear).

Maps:

Click here for the Action Rentals map.
Click here for the Adventure Cycling maps.

Click here for the Cycling House maps.
Click here for the Foys to Blacktail map.
Click here for the Journey to Wellness maps.
Click here for the Kiwanis Club map.
Click here for the NW Adventures map.
Click here for the Powdered Soul map.

Click here for the Spotted Dog maps.
Click here for the Whitefish Bike Retreat map.
Click here for the Whitefish Shuttle maps.
Click here for the Whitefish Legacy Partnership map.

Other Information:

Click here for the Flathead NF's supplemental permit descriptions.
Click here for Adventure Cycling's Region 1 tour itinerary.
Click here for Adventure Cycling's Region 1 tour maps.
Click here for Cycling House's tour itinerary.
Click here for Spotted Dog's tour itinerary.
Click here for the Spotted Dog activity description.

Special Use Permit Applications (partially redacted by USFS):

Click here for the Action Rentals application.
There is no 2020 Adventure Cycling application.
Click here for the Cycling House application.
Click here for the Foys to Blacktail application.
There is no 2020 Journey to Wellness application.
Click here for the Kiwanis Club application.
Click here for the NW Adventures application.
Click here for the Powdered Soul application.
Click here for the Spotted Dog application.
Click here for the Whitefish Bike Retreat application.
Click here for the Whitefish Shuttle application.
Click here for the Whitefish Legacy Partnership application.

This article published on April 26, 2020 • [Permalink]


Logging Road Landslide
Logging road landslide into Sullivan Creek bull trout habitat! Keith Hammer photo.

What's New
Join Us for Our 40th Anniversary Potluck and Gathering! May 21, 2024

We hope you can come join us for our 40th Anniversary potluck and gathering on June 9 at the Creston Fish Hatchery pavilion on the shore of Jessup Mill Pond! There will be cake and we get to eat it too!

Winter-Spring Newsletter: Swan View Celebrates 40 Years! April 24, 2024

Our Winter-Spring newsletter celebrates our 40th anniversary with news of recent victories, a look at what we've accomplished in 40 years, a reminder of the work that still lies ahead, and an invitation to our celebratory outdoor potluck and gathering on June 9!

Happy Solstice, Holidays and New Year! December 20, 2023

Swan View Coalition wishes you a Happy Solstice, Holidays and New Year, and has a gift suggestion!

Holidays Newsletter: Things to Celebrate in 2023! December 07, 2023

Our Holidays newsletter announces wolverine are finally given ESA protection, an ESA recovery plan is drafted for lynx, there are promising signs for the management of Krause Basin, and POWDR Corp has withdrawn its plans to super-size Holland Lake Lodge, but reminds us of huge "fuels reduction" logging projects on the horizon!

Summer-Fall Newsletter: Pushing Back Against All Odds! October 12, 2023

Our Summer-Fall newsletter announces the release of our latest Forest Service road closure effectiveness report, describes how the Forest Service is keeping the public in the dark while permitting private corporations to conduct business on public lands, provides graphic proof that "thinning" as "restoration" logging amounts to more clearcuts, and calls on the public to carry and learn to use bear spray when outdoors!

Swan View Report Shows Road Closure Effectiveness Far Lower than Forest Service Claims! September 12, 2023

Swan View Coalition recently released a report based on its 2022 inspection of 303 Forest Service road closure devices in the Flathead National Forest’s Swan Valley Geographic Area. The group found only 53% of the gates, berms and boulders showed no signs of motor vehicle use behind them. When adjusted to account for Forest Service exceptions allowing administrative and logging contractor use behind closures, effectiveness rose to only 68%, far short of the 92% effectiveness claimed by the Flathead NF for 2019-2020.

Your Prompt Donation Matched by Cinnabar Foundation! August 02, 2023

Your prompt donation to support our work will be matched/doubled by Cinnabar Foundation!

Help Push Back on the Commercialization of the Flathead National Forest! May 23, 2023

Your email is needed today to push back on 25 commercial Special Use Permits being issued on the Flathead National Forest!

Winter Spring Newsletter: Government and Industry Set to Log it All! April 17, 2023

Our Winter-Spring newsletter asks you to send a quick email to help stop DNRC from logging the last of its hemlock forests in Krause Basin, then shows how DNRC's proposal aligns with federal proposals that also promote logging to "restore" forests to false "historic" conditions. We provide links to a growing body of research revealing a "falsification of the scientific record in government-funded wildfire studies" that are being used to promote the logging of native forests.

Help Stop DNRC Logging in Krause Basin Today! April 12, 2023

MT DNRC intends to log more of what little native hemlock forest it hasn't logged already in Krause Basin! Please help us stop this phony "forest restoration" now!

Double Your Donation Now! March 23, 2023

Wake up! A generous donor has agreed to match $5,000 in donations to Swan View Coalition! So DONATE NOW and see your donation doubled!

Holidays Newsletter: Learning from Our Past and Moving Forward! November 30, 2022

Our Holidays 2022 newsletter looks at how recreation gets out of control on public lands and what we can do about it. It also provides a brief summary of our work in 2022 and why your membership is important!

Giving Thanks! November 23, 2022

This Thanksgiving we are thankful to have public lands worth protecting and your support of our work to do so!

Summer-Fall Newsletter: Plunder Blunders! October 17, 2022

Our Summer-Fall 2022 newsletter examines two major public relations blunders by the Flathead National Forest as it attempts to force recreational development on a public that is tired of seeing its public lands turned into playgrounds for the rich and racy! We also announce the resumption of our biweekly Swan Range Community Potlucks and Music Jam Sessions - and our Annual Membership Meeting to be held November 20.

Insist Now on Full Public Review of Holland Lake Lodge Mega-Expansion! September 06, 2022

The Flathead National Forest is attempting to approve a mega-expansion of the Holland Lake Lodge on public land without informed public input and with no Environmental Assessment or Impact Statement. Tell the Flathead NOW to back up and start again!

Second Round of Flathead Forest Plan Lawsuits Filed! August 11, 2022

Swan View Coalition and Friends of the Wild Swan are in the process of filing three new lawsuits against the revised Flathead Forest Plan's building of logging roads in threatened grizzly bear and bull trout habitat!

Winter-Spring Newsletter: To Wonder or Plunder? May 13, 2022

Our Winter-Spring 2022 newsletter takes a sobering look at how, contrary to the way forest ecosystems function and the need to keep carbon stored in trees to combat climate warming, the government and industry instead want to log/thin all the forests they can get their hands on while building all the more logging roads to get it done!

Help Stop Commercial Crowding of the Flathead National Forest! May 10, 2022

Your comments are needed to object to commercial permits that promote crowding of the Flathead National Forest!

FS Cannot Seek Consensus from Krause Basin Collaborative February 13, 2022

The Forest Service cannot ask the Krause Basin Collaborative for group/consensus recommendations, only individual advice.

Forest Service Reneging on Promises to Prohibit Motorized Trails in Krause Basin! December 13, 2021

This page documents promises made by the Flathead National Forest to close all trails in Krause Basin to motorized use after designating it a Wildlife Management Area and mandating that the trails "not be marked on the ground."