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Big Hole River Watershed


Aerial view of the Big Hole River WatershedThe Big Hole Valley is the highest and widest mountain valley of southwestern Montana with much of the valley floor above 6,000 feet elevation. The Big Hole River emanates from the Beaverhead Mountains of the Bitterroot Range and winds for nearly 156 miles through a broad 1.8 million-acre valley. The Big Hole River is a world renown trout fishery and is one of only a few free flowing rivers left in the west. Landownership in the Big Hole Watershed is 70% public ownership and 30% private. The public lands are predominately located in the foothills and mountains, managed by the Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management. The valley bottom is mostly privately owned by large intact cattle ranches and is managed mostly for hay production and livestock grazing The valley is sparsely populated with about 900 residents; however, development pressures are increasing steadily.


For More Information, Contact:

Randy Gazda
Montana Partners for Fish and Wildlife
Dillon Ranger District
420 Barrett Street
Dillon, MT  59725-3572
(406) 683-3893
Randy_Gazda@fws.gov


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