“I know everyone is anxious to get back on the trails and I am grateful for the public’s patience and cooperation this summer,” said Stevensville District Ranger Dan Ritter. “I’m very pleased that we could get the heavy equipment parts of this project finished in just one season.”
Crews are completing soil rehabilitation work this week on some of the skid trails. All of the logs, nearly 4 million board feet of timber (1,100 truckloads) have been hauled to the Pyramid mill in Seeley Lake. The final piece of the project, planting native shrubs and ground cover will occur next spring.
The area was a high priority for treatment because of its high levels of public use and increased levels of pine beetle mortality. The Bass Creek Recreation Area west of Stevensville, is one of the most popular areas on the Bitterroot National Forest with horseback riders, hikers, and mountain bikers. The area is visited by more than 50,000 people annually. Along with improving forest health, the project also reduced hazardous fuels and fire hazards.
For more information contact the Stevensville Ranger District at (406) 777-5461. Stay in touch with the Bitterroot National Forest through www.facebook.com/DiscoverTheBitterroot and www.twitter.com/BitterrootNF.