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DNRC Public Scoping Notice: Proposed City of Whitefish and Whitefish Legacy Partners Smith-Swift

Whitefish Legacy Partners is excited to see this partnership project with the City and the Department of Natural Resources and Conservation moving forward. This is an opportunity to forever protect a critical piece of land surrounding Smith Lake and Swift Creek at the headwaters of Whitefish Lake - ensuring public access, water quality, wildlife habitat, scenic view sheds, and working forests. We modified the original project to focus on Smith Lake and Swift Creek in 2023-2024 with plans for Phase 2 to protect the larger watershed for conservation values in upcoming years. DNRC is now completing the required environmental analysis and is interested in public input.

The Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation (DNRC) is seeking public comment on a proposed easement purchase on approximately 600 acres in the proximity of Smith Lake and Swift Creek to remove development rights and ensure public access forever. The proposal includes securing the Whitefish Trail Swift Creek & Smith Lake trail system under a permanent easement and provides for new trail construction and additional recreation amenities including trailheads, day use sites, and creek and lake access. This is an amended proposal from March 2017 and does not include the WT connection to North Beaver or bridges over Swift Creek, Lazy Creek, or BNSF railroad.

Please submit written comments by Monday, September 25

to Nicole Porter, Stillwater State Forest, PO Box 164, Olney, MT 59927

or or by calling 406-881-2666.


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