Friday, March 25, 2011
Montana State Parks, a division of MT Fish, Wildlife & Parks, is pleased to announce the result of this year’s drawing for the Smith River Super Permit. The 2011 winner is Sean O’Connor of Drummond, MT. Sean, the Fire Chief of the Valley Fire District, had applied for the regular Smith River permit during the annual January - February drawing, but was unsuccessful.
However, for the first time in 2011, Montana State Parks initiated a special Smith River Super Permit lottery. For $5.00 per chance, individuals may purchase an unlimited number of chances to win the chance to float the Smith River, at a time of their choosing. When Sean found out he was unsuccessful in the general permit drawing, he decided to take his chances and purchased 5 chances for the Super Permit. Sean remarked, “My friends, about 10 of them, said don’t bother, you won’t win.” However, Sean didn’t listen to them, and entered the lottery. Sean’s name was drawn out of a total of 2,435 tickets sold.
Though several of Sean’s friends have floated the Smith River, and Sean has been on the Clark Fork and Little Blackfoot Rivers, he has not had the opportunity to experience the beautiful Smith River as it winds through the spectacular limestone canyon and the Lewis & Clark / Helena National Forests. The typical four day, fifty-nine mile float offers great fishing for cutthroat, brown, and rainbow trout, plus mountain whitefish.
Smith River State Park is located in central Montana just north of White Sulphur Springs from Camp Baker to Eden Bridge. Sean says he plans to float the Smith River sometime in late June, or when the fishing and the weather are at its best.