Flathead Lake

Flathead Lake Biological Station research boat, Jessie-B.
Courtesy Flathead Lake Biological Station

Researchers at the Flathead Lake Biological Station are studying how climate change may affect the lake’s chemistry and temperature. Corin Cates-Carney reports from a research presentation at the station Thursday night.

The bullet point is Flathead Lake is an extremely complex body of water; and it’s changing.

One of the authors of a new plan to save the threatened bull Trout in Montana says that’s not an easy task, nor is measuring what it will take to get the fish off of the endangered species list.

"Some folks think it’s a simple, you cross the finish line and you’re there. That’s never quite the way it is."

Bull trout in British Columbia’s Wigwam River drainage, the headwaters of the Kootenai River.
Joel Sartore National Geographic & Wade Fredenberg USFWS (CC-BY-2.0)

A Montana environmental group working on recovery of the threatened bull trout is critical of a new federal plan to save the fish.

"I guess I just don’t see this as being a holistic plan," says Arlene Montgomery.

William Neuheisel

Flathead Lake is a good two feet below full pool following this particularly dry spring in northwest Montana. Northwestern Energy, which manages Kerr Dam, has notified tribal and federal agencies that water levels are low which could affect outflows this summer. Kerr produces power, regulates the lake's water levels and several reservoirs.

Corin Cates-Carney

I’m Corin Cates-Carney at the tenth annual pond skip at the Whitefish Mountain Resort.

A large pool waits for skiers and snowboards at the bottom of the mountainside runway. The goal is to skip across the icy water, dressed in costume, with prizes awarded to those who make it, and those who don’t, but fail in style.

CSKT Natural Resources Department

A Stevensville man is $10,000 richer because of a 10-inch fish he caught in Flathead Lake.

Every spring and fall since 2002 the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes holds the Mack Days fishing tournament, offering lots of prizes to anglers. The tribes do it to help reduce the number of non-native Mackinaws, or lake trout in the lake, because they’re crowding out native fish like Bull trout and West Slope cutthroats.

FLIC

Last year the Flathead Lake International Cinemafest, or FLIC showed more than thirty films from new and emerging filmmakers. 2014 marks FLICs second year, and the number of films has more than doubled to seventy-nine.