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Welcome to FWP Region 3

FWP's administrative Region 3 is located in southwest Montana and includes the counties of Beaverhead, Broadwater, Gallatin, Jefferson, Lewis and Clark, Madison, Park, Silver Bow, and part of Deer Lodge. Region 3 encompasses 18,089 square miles, which is more than 12% of the total land area of Montana. About 60% of the region is made up of public lands administered by the U.S. Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management.

Southwest Montana is made up of broad valleys comprised of prairie habitats of grasslands, sagebrush, and wooded riparian areas rising to foothills and mountains as high as 11,000 feet in elevation. Most of the lower lands are privately-owned, while most of the higher reaches are federally-owned by the U.S. Forest Service or Bureau of Land Management.

Region 3 is home to 9 state parks, including Montana's oldest—Lewis and Clark Caverns—and Bannack State Park, the site of the first Territorial Capital. The region is headwaters to some of the most renowned trout rivers in the U.S., including the Madison, Gallatin, Jefferson, upper Missouri, upper Yellowstone, Beaverhead, and Big Hole. About 26% of Montana's angling takes place in Region 3, and the region boasts 95 fishing access sites. Big game hunting is a major draw in southwest Montana. Approximately 50% of the elk harvest in the entire state happens in Region 3.

Recent Region 3 News

Angling Restrictions Lifted on Several southwest MT Rivers


Longer nights combined with cooler air temperatures have made a sustained impact on southwest Montana rivers and their water temperatures. As a result, Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks has lifted the angling restrictions on several rivers.

(Region 3 - Fishing)

Hoot Owl Restriction Removed on Section of Big Hole


After consistent readings of lower water temperatures, Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks has lifted the “Hoot Owl” restriction on the Big Hole River prohibiting fishing from 2 p.m. to midnight on the stretch of river running from Maiden Rock Fishing Access Site to Notch Bottom Fishing Access Site.

(Region 3 - Drought & Fire)

Restaurant Owner Involved in Illegal Purchase of Game Animals


More than a year after an investigation began into a West Yellowstone restaurant owner’s illegal purchase of game fish and game animal parts, a Gallatin County justice of the peace moved Wednesday to resolve this portion of the case.

(Region 3 - Enforcement)