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Public Meeting on Big Spring Creek Restoration Project

Headlines - Region 4

Tue Feb 24 00:00:00 MST 2009

Fish, Wildlife and Parks will have a scoping meeting on a project to move a portion of Big Spring Creek, north of Lewistown, back to its historic streambed.

The project would seek to restore a portion of Big Spring Creek to its original length and meander width, increase pool habitat, and protect the riparian area.

The meeting will take place 6:30-8 p.m., March 11, at the FWP Lewistown office, 215 W. Aztec Drive, by the airport.

In 2006, FWP purchased a recreational access and conservation easement on the Machler property north of Lewistown, south of the fairgrounds and west of highway 191. Historic photos show this reach channelized before 1962, which shortened the streambed by 3,840 feet and resulted in a substantial loss of fisheries and riparian habitat.

The goal, says George Liknes, FWP regional fisheries manager, is to remeander Big Spring Creek, improve fish habitat and angling opportunities, protect the riparian and eventually construct a public hiking trail.

“The meeting is to find out the public’s concerns and issues,” Liknes says.