MTPR

Lolo National Forest

Michelle and Dan Schurg walk through their Florence area neighborhood in the aftermath of the Lolo Peak Fire, September 2017.
Mike Albans

The Lolo National Forest’s Missoula Ranger District is now accepting public comment on a proposal to plant trees on thousands of acres that burned in last summer’s 50,000-acre Lolo Peak fire.

The proposed treatments would occur on almost 8,000 acres burned by the Lolo Peak Fire.

The Flathead National Forest released the final draft of its new forest plan Dec. 14, 2017.
Nicky Ouellet

The Flathead National Forest released the final draft of its new forest plan Thursday morning after four years of fine-tuning and analysis. The plan will guide land use decision making for the next 10 to 15 years.

Flathead National Forest Supervisor Chip Weber says writing a guiding document like this is a balancing act between thousands of stakeholders.

The Southwestern Crown Collaborative visits a burn site from the Rice Ridge Fire near Seeley Lake.
Brittany Greeson, Crossing The Divide

Wildfires burned more than a million acres across Montana this year, making it one of the most expensive fire seasons since 1999. While the smoke has cleared, the debate over wildfires and forest management is ongoing. Some Montana lawmakers are blaming what they call "environmental extremists" who've managed to stop some logging. But ecologists say it's more complicated than that. In an effort to learn how to live with wildfires, the Southwestern Crown Collaborative is one group trying to find common ground.

This map shows the burn severity as of August 22, 2017 for the Park Creek Fire, one of the biggest fires in the Helena-Lewis and Clark National Forest this year.
INCIWEB

The Helena-Lewis and Clark Forest lifted all fire related closures today. Several other national forests in Montana reduced fire restrictions or closures over the last several weeks. 

Mike Wheelock, president of Merlin, Oregon-based Grayback Forestry in Missoula Thursday
Eric Whitney

This story was updated at 3:30pm.

Trenton Johnson was on just his second assignment for Oregon-based Grayback Forestry when he was struck by a falling tree.

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