The Stillwater Valley Watershed Council is an open forum in which all interested parties may work in a collaborative effort to sustain our rural quality of life and protect and enhance our natural resources.
The Stillwater Valley Watershed Council recently received a Western States Wildland-Urban Interface grant so we are beginning to develop a fuels mitigation program along the Beartooth Front.
Upper Stillwater Watershed Hazardous Fuels Mitigation Project
Several large wildfires, most significantly the Derby Fire of 2006, have threatened private lands and developments in Stillwater watershed in recent years. The concern is that the Stillwater Valley, comprised of dry ponderosa pine forests and open rangelands, is being encroached by juniper and Douglas-fir, as well as higher elevation mixed conifer forests. Vegetative fuel conditions can therefore be dangerous because of low precipitation, overstocked forests, and blowdown-aftermath.
The SVWC sought out funds to help mitigate the problem, recently receiving a three-year, $270,000 Western States Hazardous Fuels Reduction grant through the DNRC to lessen the wildfire potential along the Wildland Urban Interface (WUI) area of the Beartooth Front. The intent of the proposed Upper Stillwater Watershed Hazardous Fuels Mitigation Project is to reduce hazardous fuel conditions around the communities of Absarokee, Fishtail, Dean, Nye and Roscoe.
The project goal is to focus on aforementioned areas characterized by extreme wind-driven fire behavior, rural residential development with poor access, and limited fire response capacity. The project will provide homeowners with cost-share assistance for fuels reduction projects, prevention and mitigation materials, and continuing education regarding wildland fire.