View of Swan Range
Holidays Newsletter: Reflecting on 2021 and Looking Forward!

Our Holidays 2021 newsletter pays tribute to the late Brian Peck, calls for truth to restore hope, previews a guide to how forest ecosystems function, and asks for your help raising $20,000 in December!

Below is our newsletter's table of contents. Click here to view or download our newsletter as a pdf.

A big THANK YOU to those of you who have made donations that support our continuing work!

Won't you join them and make a donation today?

Fish, wildlife and people are counting on us - and you!

This article published on November 22, 2021 • [Permalink]


Judge Rules in Favor of Grizzly Bears and Bull Trout!

A federal judge has ruled in favor of grizzly bears and bull trout in our lawsuit against the 2018 revised Flathead Forest Plan!

U.S. District Judge Donald Molloy cited Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg in ruling that federal agencies were negligent in abandoning the prior Plan's Amendment 19 road management protections for grizzly bear and bull trout, saying it is "like throwing away your umbrella in a rainstorm because you are not getting wet."

Amendment 19's road closure and removal requirements are credited with putting threatened grizzly bears on a path toward recovery. Its requirement that culverts be removed from permanently closed roads is credited with helping protect threatened bull trout from the sediment released by inevitable culvert wash-outs. 

The revised Flathead Forest Plan abandoned these requirements, so Swan View Coalition and Friends of the Wild Swan filed a lawsuit in 2019. Judge Molloy's 6/24/21 Order requires the Forest Service and Fish and Wildlife Service to reconsider its abandonment of Amendment 19 and to conduct new Endangered Species Act reviews of any new road-building projects.

Our victory should also slow down federal efforts to remove ESA protection from the Northern Continental Divide Ecosystem grizzly bear population, which is premised on the same abandonment of Amendment 19 road and motorized vehicle management.

Click here for our joint press release with Earthjustice.

Click here for Judge Molloy's Order.

Click here for more background on our lawsuit, first filed in 2019.

WildEarth Guardians and others also filed a lawsuit against the Flathead Forest Plan, which the court combined with ours. 

NEWS COVERAGE:

Kalispell Daily Inter Lake

Montana Public Radio

Missoulian

Reuters

Missoula Current/KPAX

This article published on November 10, 2021 • [Permalink]


Summer-Fall Newsletter: Even Victories Require Constant Vigilance!

Our Summer-Fall 2021 newsletter reports on our continued advocacy and volunteer work, asks you to tell Glacier Park to end its noisy commercial air tours NOW and announces our October 10 general membership meeting!

Below is our newsletter's table of contents. Click here to view or download our newsletter as a pdf.

A big THANK YOU to those of you who have made donations that support our continuing work!

Won't you join them and make a donation today?

Fish, wildlife and people are counting on us - and you!

This article published on September 21, 2021 • [Permalink]


Your Prompt Donation Matched by Cinnabar Foundation!

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

Be among the first $4,000 in donations and your donation will explode like the fireweed seed shown here!

This is Cinnabar's way of making your donation go even further in helping us keep America's roadless areas roadless, keeping its old-growth forest standing, and restoring its damaged ecosystems through limits on off-road vehicles and the reclamation of excessive roads!

Simply CLICK HERE TO DONATE or send a check to Swan View Coalition at 3165 Foothill Road, Kalispell, MT 59901!

We are currently working hard to insure our Flathead Forest Plan lawsuit victory results in good changes on the ground, not just on paper.

With your help, we kept commercial motorcycle tours out of Krause Basin this year and with your continued help we intend to get them banned permanently!

THANK YOU for your support of our work and for helping us meet Cinnabar's $4,000 challenge/matching grant!

This article published on August 26, 2021 • [Permalink]


Sign Up NOW to Speak Up for Krause Basin!
Use licensed by 
www.mountainjournal.org and www.johnpotterstudio.com.

Please sign up today to help plan recreation management in the wildlife-rich Krause Basin!

The Swan Lake Ranger District has announced it will begin a public planning process and is asking interested people to sign up for it by August 15.

We need lots of individual voices to get the Forest Service to honor its past promises to get motorized vehicles out of Krause Basin and to not turn the area into one more crowded tourist trap!

Email your name, phone number and mailing address to Darlene Bridges at comments-northern-flathead-swan-lake@usda.gov . Put "Krause Basin" in the subject line.

See our Winter/Spring Newsletter for more background on recreation management in Krause Basin.

These public lands and wildlife belong to everyone. You don't need to live near Krause Basin to be an "interested participant."

You don't have to commit to participating in the process until the Forest Service describes it more completely after August 15, but you do need to sign up now to have the option and receive further information.

THANK YOU for taking a few moments to speak up for the health of people, wildlife and their habitat!

This article published on July 11, 2021 • [Permalink]


COVID Updates!

As COVID precautions loosen, we remain hard at work and will continue our weekly Swan Ranger reports.

We will not resume Saturday Swan Ranger group outings due to pressure on group size, but we encourage people to continue hiking, skiing and snowshoeing in small groups of their own.

Our Swan Rangers in Service will continue to help the Forest Service maintain trails that are supposed to be on the landscape and to help restore areas damaged by unauthorized trails.

We hope to resume our every-other-Sunday Community Potluck and Music Jam Sessions this Fall.

COVID has had little effect on our advocacy work because we have been able to work and hold meetings remotely and have been able to get out in the field whenever necessary. 

We remain hard at work and appreciate everyone's patience during these times of COVID precautions!

This article published on May 14, 2021 • [Permalink]


Help Stop Motorized Dirt Bike Tours in Krause Basin Now!

Your email today can help stop motorized dirt bike tours in Krause Basin and other harmful Special Use Permits (SUPs) on the Flathead National Forest!

The Flathead National Forest wants your comments on 19 proposed Special Use Permits. Among them are guided tours on motorized dirt bikes, ATVs and UTVs - including in the wildlife rich Krause Basin enjoyed by walkers and horseback riders!

Please send an email by May 12 to the following addresses:

sadie.wehunt@usda.govanthony.butterfield@usda.gov, darlene.bridges@usda.gov, elizabeth.pargman@usda.gov, william.wehunt@usda.gov

Consider making the following points:

1. Object to issuing a permit for guided motorized dirt bike tours, especially in the wildlife rich Krause Basin area. Motorized dirt bikes, let alone dirt bike tours, don’t fit in with Krause Basin’s popularity for walking and horseback riding!

2. Object to all of the permits intended to provide motorized recreation as an end in itself. Intentionally promoting motorized dirt bike, ATV, UTV, and watercraft rentals and tours does not work toward the goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Each gallon of gasoline burned puts 20 pounds of CO2 into the atmosphere! And the noise spoils the outdoors for everyone else!

3. Object to the permits intended to promote trail running, bike and foot races - with up to 400 participants and 300 spectators! These displace others from the trails and promote recreation that increases the risk of surprise encounters between people and bears, which have resulted in the deaths of both.

4. Ask that non-motorized bike tours stick to roads open to motorized vehicles and not use roads closed to protect wildlife security.

5. Support the Journey to Wellness and Montana Academy permits for healing hikes in quiet, unhurried nature. These stand in stark contrast to the majority of the 19 SUPs being proposed, which instead spew forth crowds, haste, noise, and exhaust fumes that destroy other peoples’ ability to enjoy their National Forests and the planet.

6. Ask that an Environmental Impact Statement be prepared that looks at the cumulative impacts of the Flathead's SUPs and Rental Cabins expansion program, which are pumping hordes of people into far flung corners of the Forest without adequate concern for fish, wildlife, peace, and quiet.

For more detail on these six points, see our letter here.

Click here for the Flathead's description of the proposed SUPs and their maps.

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

This article published on May 04, 2021 • [Permalink]


Protect the Remote Bunker Creek from Cabin Development!
Use licensed by www.mountainjournal.org and www.johnpotterstudio.com.

UPDATE 3/9/21: Forest Service pauses to read the over 250 comments it received on this proposal! Click here for the Daily Inter Lake article. THANK YOU to all of you that wrote in opposition to this ill-conceived idea!

----------------------

Please take five minutes to tell the Forest Service not to build four rental cabins adjacent to the Bob Marshall Wilderness in the remote Bunker Creek area!

Spotted Bear Ranger District wants to displace traditional semi-primitive tent camping at Bunker Park with 4 rental cabins, 1 trailer pad, a livestock corral, and a childrens playground! This will turn the area into a nearly year-round snowmobile and mountain bike outpost smack in the middle of some of the best wildlife habitat on the Flathead National Forest!

Please send a quick email by April 6 to comments-northern-flathead-spotted-bear@usda.gov and put "Bunker Park Rental Cabins" in the subject line. Consider making the following points:

1. The remote Bunker Creek area is adjacent to the Bob Marshall Wilderness and is no place to promote recreation through rental cabins!

2. The development would be right in the middle of "some of the most dense grizzly bear and carnivore habitat on the Flathead Forest," not to mention prime habitat for elk, mountain goats and bull trout!

3. The develpment would promote snowmobiling in an area currently seldom reached by people in winter and inevitably result in motorized trespass of unpatrolled closed areas!

4. The development would become a destination for mountain biking from Napa Point and other access along the Swan Crest!

5. The development would displace tent campers and folks without $85 to rent a cabin!

6. No "Categorical Exclusion" shortcuts! Either drop this idea or give it the full and public environmental analysis required by law!

Click here for Swan View Coalition's comments and those of a grizzly bear expert.

Click here to see the proposal on the Forest Service web site.

THANK YOU for taking a few minutes to keep the backcountry a secure place for fish and wildlife!

Press coverage:

3/11/21 Missoulian

3/14/21 Kalispell Daily Inter Lake

3/17/21 Hungry Horse News

3/19/21 NBC Montana TV

This article published on March 24, 2021 • [Permalink]


Winter-Spring Newsletter: We Need Your Help Protecting Krause Basin!

Our Winter-Spring 2021 newsletter gives the history of the wildlife-rich Krause Basin, including past threats and current threats, along with our plan to restore calm, reverence and respect for people and wildlife - in the face of Forest Service plans to instead develop it into a Focused Recreation Area.

Below is our newsletter's table of contents. Click here to view or download our newsletter as a pdf.

A big THANK YOU to those of you who have made donations that support our continuing work!

Won't you join them and make a donation today?

Fish, wildlife and people are counting on us - and you!

This article published on March 17, 2021 • [Permalink]


You Can Object to Huge Clearcuts Near Swan Lake Today!

You can send a two-minute email today objecting to half-square-mile clearcuts proposed above Swan Lake!

It may be too late to object to the above "landscape restoration" clearcuts on Sixmile Mountain, but you have until Feb 9 to object to huge clearcuts being planned to "reduce fire danger" on the other side of Swan Lake!

Please send a quick email today to Swan Lake District Ranger Chris Dowling (chris.dowling@usda.gov) and Regional Forester Leanne Marten (leanne.marten@usda.gov). Put "Bug Creek - Exceed Max Opening" in the subject line.

Tell them you object to the oversized clearcuts being planned under the Bug Creek Project on Crane Mountain because:

1. They violate the Flathead Forest Plan standard limiting the maximum size to 40 acres.

2. They will be ugly.

3. They will leave wildlife without hiding cover or shade, leaving them more vulnerable to poaching and heat stress, and will leave birds with no trees to nest in.

4. They will greatly increase the spread of wildfire because they dry out the forest floor, produce more ignitable fuels like grass, brush and dense stands of little trees, and are conducive to higher wind speeds that fan the flames.

5. They don't decrease the spread of wildfire by keeping forest openings limited to the 15 meters recommended by science.

Click here for our email summarizing and attaching the most recent fire science.

Click here for our comment letter detailing other problems with excessive clearcut sizes.

Click here for the Forest Service's invitation for you to comment on its excessively sized clearcuts on Crane Mountain.

THANK YOU for taking a few moments to fight massive clearcutting on the Flathead National Forest!

This article published on February 02, 2021 • [Permalink]


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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."