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Newsletter: Public Voice Being Silenced on Public Land Issues!

Our Summer-Fall 2019 newsletter reports on how the broader public voice is being sidelined as the Forest Service pursues new regulations, collaboration and public-private partnerships to more quickly serve private interests!

It also reports on how this is resulting in even greater promotion of both logging and unsustainable recreational development on the Flathead National Forest in particular.

Below is our newsletter's table of contents. Click here to view or download it 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 DONATE NOW? If you do so soon, Cinnabar Foundation will match/double your donation!

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

This article published on October 06, 2019 • [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!

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

This article published on September 22, 2019 • [Permalink]


Help Stop Promotion of Irresponsible Recreation Now!

Tell the Flathead NF today to not issue Special Use Permits for irresponsible recreation! It only taks a couple minutes.

The Flathead has asked the public to comment on four Special Use Permits (SUPs), two of which are for trail-running races that have caused injury and/or death to runners and bears!

Here's what we wrote to the Flathead today. We urge you to consider making similar points in a quick email:

The Board of Review (BOR) reports on the death of Brad Treat when he slammed into a grizzly bear while mountain biking at high speed must be regarded as the best available science and expert advice for reducing surprise encounters between people and bears:

"Don’t Run - jogging in bear country increases the odds of surprise encounters at close distances and surprised bears are more likely to be aggressive.

Slow Down [when mountain biking]- Encounters with bears are much more likely to occur when riding at high speed. Surprised bears are more likely to be defensive and to cause injury to bike riders."

- Do not issue the Whitefish Trails and Foys to Blacktail ultra-marathon SUPs. To do so amounts to a Forest Service endorsement of the commercial promotion of irresponsible behavior in bear habitat and runs contrary to the BOR recommendations that the Forest Service is party to. The public education intended by the BOR will essentially be nullified by the commercialization and expansiveness of the irresponsible behavior endorsed in such SUPs!

- Issue the Whitefish Shuttle and Guiding SUP only if the business is willing and required to abide by and distribute the BOR recommendations to its passengers and clients. These materials should be developed by the Forest Service and approved by the BOR, insuring that permittees are positive ambassadors for human-bear safety.

- We see no red flags for the more modest Journey to Wellness Program SUP, provided the permitted activities are indeed hikes and not trail running. This SUP offers another opportunity for the permittee to abide by and distribute the BOR recommendations.

To make it simple, send a single or the same email to these two email addresses:

comments-northern-flathead-tally-lake@fs.fed.us and comments-northern-flathead-swan-lake@fs.fed.us

Click here to read our full letter to the Flathead.

Click here to read the Flathead's invitation for public comments and background info.

Your quick email will help promote responsible recreation on our public lands and help avert 100- and 200-person trail running races that promote just the opposite!

Thanks for helping! Comments are due June 19!

Click here to read the Daily Inter Lake article "Bear Expert Opposes Permits for Running Events" and click here for the comments submitted by Dr. Chris Servheen, former Grizzly Bear Recovery Coordinator for USFWS.

Click here to read the Missoulian article on our efforts.

Click here to read the Missoula Current article on our efforts.

This article published on June 13, 2019 • [Permalink]


Newsletter: Revised Flathead Plan Ushers in Lawlessness!

Our Winter-Spring 2019 newsletter reports on how the revised Flathead Forest Plan is ushering in lawlessness - and why we are suing over it!

It also reports on how collaboration and public-private partnerships are over-promoting recreational developments and activities of great risk to people and wildlife, using the southern Whitefish Range as just one example!

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

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

Won't you join them and DONATE NOW?

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

This article published on May 30, 2019 • [Permalink]


Practice the Swan Crest Crawl and Mindful Recreation!

You are cordially invited to participate in the Swan Crest Crawl, a mindful practice to see how long you can take to hike 70 miles (the length of the Swan Crest from Inspiration Point near the Bob Marshall Wilderness to Columbia Mountain).

You can hike, walk or crawl the 70 miles wherever you wish, but you are encouraged to take your time and enjoy everything the outdoors has to offer:

- Sit in the shade by a mountain stream and listen to the songbirds.

- Look around for wildlife big and small. The outdoors is their only home.

- Walk slowly and talk to the wildlife that might be just around the corner in the trail so you don’t have a surprise encounter with a bear, mountain lion or mama moose! Keep your lightweight bear spray handy just in case.

- Keep an eye out for wildflowers and definitely stop to smell the wild roses.

- Bring along kids and elders, sharing enthusiasm and knowledge.

- Carry lots of heavy plant and bird ID books to help slow you down!

- Better yet, bring a bit of camping gear and spend a night or two under the stars!

You can track your 70 miles of progress (and mindful delays) using our Swan Crest Virtual Trek, where you’ll find links to a map and a chart on which you can track your progress.

The interactive map you’ll find there is also a great way to learn more about the natural and cultural history of the Swan Crest. And, it will get you thinking about even more ways to appreciate and spend time in the great outdoors wherever you are!

Happy trails, sights, sounds, and smells!

This article published on May 22, 2019 • [Permalink]


Legal Challenge Issued to Abandonment of Fish and Wildlife Protections in Flathead Forest Plan!

UPDATED 4/15/19: The government did not respond to our February 8 60-day notice so on April 15, 2019, Earthjustice filed a lawsuit on our behalf in U.S. District Court in Missoula, MT.

Click here for our Court Complaint.

Click here for our 4/15/19 press release.

Click here to read the Missoulian article in this matter.

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Swan View Coalition and Friends of the Wild Swan have filed a 60-day notice that they will file suit over the Flathead Forest Plan's abandonment of key protections for threatened grizzly bear and bull trout!

The photo above was taken by the Flathead National Forest of its logging road 10753. It considers this road so well "stored" and "impassable" to motor vehicles that it need not be counted as a road in total road density - as though it does not continue to impact fish and wildlife!

Mandatory limits on the road system that were in the prior Forest Plan's Amendment 19 have been fully abandoned in the revised Plan. The Flathead no longer has to decommission old logging roads and remove culverts in order to protect grizzly bears and bull trout, even though research shows bears are displaced by even closed roads and bull trout suffer from the sediment produced by roads.

The Flathead recently revealed what it thinks it can get away with under its revised Plan. Its Mid-Swan Landscape "Restoration" Project would build 60 miles of new permanent logging roads and an unspecified mileage of "temporary" logging roads! In contrast, under Amemendment 19, the Flathead built only 3.2 miles of new road since 1995.

Earthjustice has agreed to represent us in this matter!

Click here for our press release.

Click here for our Notice of Intent to file suit.

Click here to read the Kalispell Daily Inter Lake's article in this matter.

Click here for good reasons to doubt the government's claims that grizzly bears are "recovered" in the Northern Continental Divide Ecosystem.

This article published on February 13, 2019 • [Permalink]


Trump and Flathead National Forest Accelerate Logging!

President Trump and the Flathead National Forest issued orders over the Holidays that will greatly increase the logging of public lands in the New Year!

As the sun sets on 2018, don't think for a moment that the government is shut down!

On December 21, Winter Solstice, Trump issued an Executive Order directing increased logging on Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management lands under the guise of controlling wildfires - even though hundreds of experts have warned logging will make matters worse. The EO instructs the agencies to use existing shortcuts in environmental reviews and to create new shortcuts.

Two days after Christmas, the Flathead National Forest published its Final Record of Decision for its revised Forest Plan. In the same Federal Register notice, the Forest Supervisors of the other Forests in the Northern Continental Divide Grizzly Bear Ecosystem issued Amendments to their Forest Plans. The Flathead Plan and other Plan Amendments all remove or greatly relax management standards that were in prior plans to protect the threatend grizzly bear and its habitats from road building and logging.

We wish we had better news to share, but we wanted to let you know that we aren't asleep at the switch even though the government may be pretending to be!

With you by our side we intend to meet these challenges head-on in 2019! Your continuted support of our work is greatly appreciated!

January 7 update: Click here to read a Hungry Horse New Article chastising the Flathead for not making the release of its revised Forest Plan known publicly. The article also notes that the current Forest Plan's road closure and decommissioning program for grizzly bear security, Amendment 19, had also restored water quality in Big Creek and gotten it removed from the list of "impaired" watersheds - but that Amendment 19 is abandoned in the revised Forest Plan!

This article published on December 30, 2018 • [Permalink]


Happy Solstice, Holidays and New Year!

Swan View Coalition wishes you a Happy Solstice, Holidays and New Year!

May you find yourself among friends and family and doing things you love!

Thank you for your kind words and support in 2018!

This article published on December 20, 2018 • [Permalink]


Holiday Newsletter: Temporary Win for Grizzlies but More Work Ahead!

Our Holiday 2018 newsletter reports on a temporary legal victory for grizzly bears, but how agencies remain committed to removing their ESA protections in the greater Yellowstone and Glacier ecosystems!

To make matters worse, the revised Flathead Forest Plan is due to be issued by Christmas. It would strip existing protections from grizzly bear habitat regardless of whether ESA protections are lifted - unless we stop it!

So please join others in supporting our work to protect habitats for wildlife, fish and people!

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

A big THANK YOU to those who made donations matched by Cinnabar Foundation!

Won't you join them and DONATE NOW to help us meet our year-end budget?

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

This article published on December 03, 2018 • [Permalink]


NCDE Griz Still on Chopping Block!

The Court's recent restoration of ESA protection to the Yellowstone grizzly bears does not stop the planned removal of those protections in the Glacier/NCDE area!

We need your help to continue fighting delisting of the NCDE grizzly bears, including at this week's hearings in Missoula and Kalispell!

While the Court in the Yellowstone case just gave government agencies good advice on how NOT to proceed in the NCDE delisting process, that doesn't mean the agencies will heed it.

It is important that you show up at hearings, send in comments and send letters to newspaper editors saying you want continued ESA protections for grizzly bears!

The Yellowstone Court ruling supports our position on the NCDE, so please revisit our Action Alert and provide comments to MDFWP this week!

This article published on September 25, 2018 • [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."