Ensuring the future of elk, other wildlife, their habitat and our hunting heritage.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

A Wonderful Day at Wall Creek

Sleeves rolled up and the fencing came down on an early summer morning in Montana’s Madison Valley. Approximately 20 volunteers from the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, joined by a handful of other Montanans, kicked off a day-long celebration by removing more than 1.25 miles of old fencing on the newly expanded Madison-Wall Creek Wildlife Management Area (WMA).

RMEF previously purchased and then transferred 631 acres of prime winter elk habitat on what is now part of the 7,188-acre WMA to Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks (FWP) as a way to permanently protect the land and open access to it for hunters, anglers, hikers and others to enjoy. The southern edge of the property borders the existing WMA while the eastern edge borders Bureau of Land Management land that runs clear to the Madison River. The project included removing a 3,096-square foot house

Following the fence pull, attendees gathered on the WMA for a barbeque lunch and a dedication ceremony to celebrate the new addition. Attendees included members of the RMEF board of directors, chapter chairs and representatives of FWP, the state of Montana and other groups and organizations. Speakers celebrated the land project and talked about the immediate history of the area as well as its importance to wildlife and Montanans. RMEF also presented Elk Country partnership Awards to FWP employees (photo below) who had key roles in the project.

Howard Burt (FWP) & Matt Ashley (RMEF), Mike Baugh (RMEF) & Julie Cunningham (FWP), Larry Irwin (RMEF) & Dean Waltee (FWP) (left to right)

The Madison-Wall Creek project celebration helped ring in Montana Open Land Month which is designed to treasure Montana’s open spaces by getting families outside to experience the land and wildlife, and enjoy access to unique outdoor recreation.

The dedication sign held (from left to right) by: Shane Brozovich (FWP game warden), Dean Waltee (FWP biologist), Matt Ashley (RMEF regional director), Lt. Governor Mike Cooney, Sam Sheppard (FWP regional supervisor), Julie Cunningham (FWP biologist), Larry Irwin and Mike Baugh (RMEF board of directors), Howard Burt (FWP regional wildlife manager), Mike Mueller (RMEF lands program manager) and Fred King (FWP WMA manager, retired).

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