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Lodgepole Road - Update


Lodgepole Road - A MAJOR SUCCESS STORY !

The status of the northern end of this county road which extends northerly from the town site of Limestone, northwest of Nye, MT has been an issue for many years. It is now open for public travel. The last two miles which access thousands of acres of the Beartooth front and an extensive trail system, had been gated off by an adjoining landowner / outfitter who attempted to control the road. After extensive negotiations and action by PLWA and FWP, Stillwater County now acknowledged that it was a county road .(It was also critical for access in fighting the Derby fire in 2006. )

The road had fallen into disrepair and dropped off the county road system. Culverts were washed out and the road was impassable much of the year. PLWA and other sporting groups , as a coalition with FWP, Stillwater County and the Forest Service have worked to rehabilitate the road and reestablish the access. The County road crews repaired some of the worst spots and FWP provided five cattle guards to replace the gates. Gary Hammond , Region 5 FWP Supervisor estimates FWP's contribution at around $9000. Those cattle guards have now been installed.


Since that time, contributions from PLWA, Billings Rod and Gun Club, Greater Yellowstone Backcountry Horsemen and FWP were combined to purchase culverts to be installed at the two stream crossings on rhe road. The culverts have been purchased and are being stored by Stillwater County. They have obtained the proper permitting for their installation.

In the meantime, a portion of the road became deeply rutted from use while wet. That issue has been addressed by FWP. A source of gravel has been located and FWP has provided funds to the county for them to gravel that portion of the road.

Stillwater County has advised that they have scheduled the graveling and installation on the culverts in early October. It should be an ideal time for the project with low late season stream flows, barring early snows. Hopefully, we can look forward to completing the project before the opening of general hunting season.

Lodgepole road is an example of how citizen perseverance and governmental interagency cooperation can get things done. (Updated as of 9-16-09)

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Lodgepole Creek Road Stillwater County

Public Land/Water Access Association Inc. or PLWA, is a citizen group organized and operated under the Montana nonprofit corporation act.

Articles and Information on this site represent the opinion of the writer and are not intended as legal advice. Legal counsel may be needed in dealing with specific access situations and issues.
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