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Spring wildflowers on Wild Horse Island

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Montana Outdoors Magazine

Leave It to Beavers

Ouch! Another branch whacks me in the face as I follow Torrey Ritter through an alder and willow thicket in the waist-deep water of Spotted Dog Creek. The FWP nongame wildlife biologist looks back and grins.

“I told you it was a jungle.”

He had, but I still couldn’t get my head around it. The day before, Ritter said we’d be visiting a westslope cutthroat trout stream that bisects Spotted Dog Wildlife Management Area, 20 miles northeast of Deer Lodge. I’d imagined a serpentine ribbon of water winding through an open grassy meadow. But this boggy 3-acre widening of the creek, where we are pushing our way through thick brush, is a chaotic quagmire, more swamp than stream.

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Outdoor Report

AIS Wading

Visiting a Montana river, lake or stream... incorporate clean, drain, dry into your routine!

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