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June 2009__No Meeting__Annual Picnic
June 13: CLEAN-UP DAY.
8 members of LCTU met at the Silver Spring fishing access site near Sheridan and joined forces to pick up trash at each of the bridges and FWP fishing access sites along the Ruby, from it's confluence with the Big Hole to the Viglante Bridge above the reservoir. We also covered several areas along the Big Hole and the Beaverhead. The group cleaned the barrow ditches up and down from each bridge and access site. The good news is that we found very little trash considering the amount of area covered.
June 20: ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP MEETING
The Annual member's meeting was held at the Twin Bridges Fairgrounds. With Outreach Coordinator Michael Gibson present as our guest, members enjoyed burgers from Big Sky Natural Beef. After a period of socializing, Dave Delisi gave a presentation on Sweetgrass Rods and a trip he took with Master Rod Builder Glenn Brackett to rural China where they hand selected bamboo culms for their production rod shop. Then, the group spent some time brainstorming potential projects and prioritizing the resulting list.
July 30 : FIELD TRIP TO THE UPPER RUBY
Donna Fraser-Paterson, Dave Delisi and John Dillon spent a day on the Upper Ruby with Keif Storrar, a biologist working with the Forest Service to inventory beaver dams on Coal Creek. The Upper Ruby at this time of year is exceptionally beautiful, with wildflowers exploding in a fireworks-display of color all over the hillsides. The four hikers were fortunate to spot a bachelor herd of elk, an owl, and some good habitat for future transplanting of beavers to the area.
August 14 : LETTER TO THE EDITOR
With the passage of major legislation permitting stream access at public bridge locations, the dust had yet to settle before controversy emerged. To read our response to a letter in the Montana Standard, click here.
September 20 : BEAVER RELOCATION
When the call from Forest Service Biologist Chris Riley came in expressing a need to support the Montana Heritage Commission in its efforts to stop the threat caused by flooding from beaver activity, we were ready. We coordinated the live trapping and subsequent transplanting of 6 beavers from the area to the Coal Creek watershed on the Upper Ruby. Click here to see a summary provided by the Montana Heritage Commission who paid for 2/3 of the operation, with the balance of cash being spent by our chapter. A relatively inexpensive operation ($100 per beaver), the efforts of the Forest Service as well as those of FWP who issued the damage-permits for trapping should also be noted.
Works In Progress
In an effort to complement this year's legislation affirming the public's right to access rivers and streams from bridges on public roads, LCTU began an inventory of all Chapter waters. We have currently completed the Ruby and are eager to begin inventorying other rivers in the area. Contact Dave is you wish to help. As you can see from the attached PDF files, we need to have GPS coordinates for the bridge and photos of each corner with documentation indicating which corner is being viewed. Also included is a Google Earth map identifying the bridge with several nearby landmarks also labeled. The original purpose was to document the level of access afforded at each of the bridge's corners, with the objective being to highlight bridges whose poor access required attention. Since the document was originally published, several bridges have had their level of access improved. Eventually, when all rivers covered by LCTU are documented, the result could serve as a handy reference guide for visitors to the area who are looking good fishing in SW Montana.