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Restoring Elk Country – SD Elk Mountain Guzzlers

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Simply put, it was an idea that took six years to fully develop and accomplish. The challenge was how to provide dependable water sources for wildlife and cattle alike in the often bone-dry Black Hills National Forest that straddles the border of southwest South Dakota and northeast Wyoming. It took a widespread collaborate effort to make it happen. The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation teamed up with the U.S. Forest Service, South Dakota Game, Fish and …

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California Burn Improves Elk Habitat

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Thanks, in part, to grant funding from the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, a small chunk of elk habitat in western California is getting an upgrade. Bureau of Land Management and CAL FIRE crews conducted a burn south of Hollister near the Clear Creek Management Area. The habitat treatment will help reduce fuel available for wildland fire by eliminating invasive yellow starthistle, which in California can grow to shoulder height and form massive, briar patches. Prescribed …

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Scenic Elk Country in Montana’s Swan Valley Conserved, Improves Public Access

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MISSOULA, Mont.—An important migration corridor for elk, grizzly bears, Canada lynx and other wildlife is now permanently protected and open to public access in Montana’s scenic Swan Valley. The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation and the Lolo National Forest worked with a landowner to purchase and convey the 638 acres to the U.S. National Forest (USFS). It is now under the management of the Lolo National Forest. “This property sits in a wildlife movement corridor between …

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Edith Peak Montana – onX Public Access Project

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Public land does not always feature large swaths of landscape that is 100 percent open to public access. Sometimes privately-owned inholdings feature development or the potential for development that can disrupt wildlife migration corridors, wildlife management and limit public access. In October 2018, the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation acquired 1,120 acres of elk habitat high in the mountains of western Montana about 15 miles west of Missoula. The two parcels were previously private inholdings owned …

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RMEF Volunteers Help Remove Tons of Trash from Illegal Marijuana Grow Sites

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Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation volunteers recently joined forces with the U.S. Forest Service, California Department of Fish and Wildlife and other groups to clean up more than three tons of trash from eight illegal grow sites on the Shasta-Trinity National Forest in north-central California. In total, the amount of trash and infrastructure weighed 6,100 pounds and included five and a half miles of irrigation pipe. It took 22 helicopter loads to remove all the refuse. …

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Tule Elk Habitat Conserved in California

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MISSOULA, Mont.—The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation teamed up with the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW), California Wildlife Conservation Board (WCB) and a committed landowner to permanently protect more than 2,600 acres of prime elk habitat in north-central California. “We want to thank Jim Keegan who reached out to us to conserve his Whiskey Hill property,” said Kyle Weaver, RMEF president and CEO. “The conservation easement now in place protects the wildlife and riparian …

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Lewis and Clark County Steps Up Big-Time to Fund RMEF Land Project

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The Lewis and Clark County Commission pledged $1.4 million toward the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation’s Falls Creek land protection/public access project. The 442-acre property is located along the Rocky Mountain Front near Augusta, Montana. “In my mind and heart, this is why people voted for this in the first place,” Susan Good Geise, Lewis and Clark County commissioner, told KTVH-TV. “It ticks off every box. It is an absolutely glorious project.” Once completed, not only …

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Prescribed Burn Improves Forest Health, Wildlife Habitat

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The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation provided funding for a prescribed burn (May 13, 2019) in the Marshall Creek drainage near Missoula, Montana. Objectives for the project include the use of prescribed burning to reduce activity fuel and natural fuels accumulations, facilitate seedling establishment and ensure long-term stand productivity, maintain and improve big game range conditions and distribute beneficial fire effects within the wildland-urban interface. Partnership support for the project also includes the Confederated Salish & …

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RMEF Access Project a Win for Hunters, Hikers and Wildlife

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MISSOULA, Mont.—The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation in partnership with the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) acquired 620 acres of critical public access and prime wildlife habitat, including elk habitat, along Montana’s Rocky Mountain Front within the boundary of the Helena-Lewis and Clark National Forest. RMEF then conveyed the property to the USFS. Not only does the transaction create new public access but it improves access to more than 2,000 acres of adjacent public land. “We appreciate …

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Restoring Elk Country – Oklahoma Prescribed Burns

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Without fire, forest health suffers because of overly dense limbs and leaves above that block sunshine to the forest floor below, thwarting the growth of nutritional forage needed by elk and other wildlife. Such forests also become vulnerable to large scale insect and disease outbreaks. That’s why, dating back to 2002, the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation in Oklahoma  provided more than $200,000 in grant funding for extensive prescribed burn treatments, as well as other habitat …

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Green Mountain – Public Access Project

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This pass, located along Montana’s Rocky Mountain Front east of the Bob Marshall Wilderness is a cross-section of activity both present and past. It is here where Meriweather Lewis crossed the Continental Divide on his return journey home from the West with fellow explorer William Clark. It is also here where you find the modern day Continental Divide National Scenic Trail within the Lewis and Clark National Historic Trail corridor, where modern day hikers do …

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Colorado Burn Improves Wildlife Habitat

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Prescribed fire is on the way to west-central Colorado and that’s a good thing for elk and other wildlife. “Wildlife benefits from carefully planned prescribed burning can be substantial, especially to elk and deer, which use Gambel oak for cover and browse to survive the winter months,” said Jennifer Prusse, Eagle-Holy Cross district wildlife biologist. The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation provided key funding for the treatment. The goal of the approximately 2,000-acre French Creek prescribed …

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RMEF Back at Work in Montana’s Bitterroot Valley

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Eight months after the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation collaborated with the U.S. Forest and other partners to permanently protect important wildlife and riparian habitat in western Montana, RMEF provided funding for more habitat stewardship work in the immediate area. A 250-acre prescribed burn in the Bass Creek Recreational Area near Stevensville stimulates native plant species important for big game winter forage. The area is extremely popular for recreational use but will only be closed temporarily. …