Our Plan

Fires, Insects, and Disease Don't Stop at Fence Lines Neither Should Our Management.

The Montana Forest Action Plan convened key statewide stakeholders and tribal nations to reassess statewide forest conditions, identify priority areas for treatment, and develop a cross-boundary plan to accomplish landscape-scale forest restoration.

The plan consists of three main parts.

Strategy Photo
Montana Forest Action Plan

The Montana Forest Action Plan provides recommended goals and strategies to help promote cross-boundary, landscape scale forest restoration and management.

View the Plan

Montana Forest
The Priority Areas

The Priority Areas for Focused Attention show the places in Montana that would benefit most from cross-boundary work.

See the Priority Areas for Focused Attention

Hands measuring a tree with a tape measurer
The Assessment

The Statewide Assessment of Forest Conditions provides an updated analysis of forest conditions and trends.

Read the Assessment

Project Success Stories
Project Success Stories

Implementing the Forest Action Plan

The Westside Bypass Project reduces severe wildfire risks on national forest system lands, spanning the area between state and private ownership west of Seeley Lake and the community of Seeley Lake to the east. Covering 4,866 acres within the wildland-urban interface, it includes 678 acres of private land and 344 acres of national forest system lands within the Seeley Lake Game Preserve.

Through a combination of thinning, improvement, and regeneration cuts, the project is promoting species such as ponderosa pine and western larch creating a mosaic forest with diverse age classes of lodgepole pine. This outcome further lessens the threat of widespread impacts from insect and disease and increasing wildfire resilience.

As of January 2024, 98% of the harvest activity is complete with subsequent post-harvest activities, including temporary road deconstruction and various forest management practices, continuing through 2025. This strategic initiative underscores the commitment to proactive forest management, ensuring the long-term health and resilience of the landscape.

Westside-Bypass-in-Fall.png

The Piquett Creek Project, situated in the southern part of Ravalli County within the Bitterroot National Forest, spans approximately 5,800 acres of Forest Service lands. This project, aimed at enhancing landscape resilience to disturbances, focuses on diversifying forest structure and composition while reducing fuel loads to mitigate wildfire risks. By reintroducing fire into the ecosystem and managing vegetation, the initiative seeks to restore the natural variability of the landscape, thereby promoting habitats conducive to wildlife such as bighorn sheep, mule deer, and elk.

Project initiatives include thinning over 952 acres, harvesting trees on 158 acres, installing 3 miles of fire line and fuel breaks, and upgrading 1.55 miles of Forest Service road to improve stream crossings and drainage. These measures are geared towards creating a landscape that is not only resilient to climate changes, fire, and insect threats but also supports a diverse range of wildlife habitats.

353 acres being harvested as part of the Piquett Timber Sale and comprehensive treatments planned for up to 3,000 acres within the project area. These efforts aim to improve landscape resilience, reduce hazardous fuels, and enhance habitat diversity. Moreover, the project has seen the completion of road and infrastructure improvements, contributing to sediment reduction and fish habitat enhancement in Piquett Creek.

The Piquett Creek Project represents a collaborative effort involving public field trips, meetings with local landowners, and presentations to partners, emphasizing community involvement and stakeholder engagement in forest management practices. It stands as a testament to the combined efforts of various stakeholders to foster a sustainable and resilient ecosystem that benefits both the environment and the community

 

Hands measuring a tree with a tape measurer

Forest Management at a Glance:

Forest conditions and the consequences of those conditions affect all Montanans regardless of land ownership. By working to align the efforts of diverse partners across the state, we can advance a common mission of strengthening our shared stewardship of Montana's forests.

This approach is called cross-boundary forest restoration and management. Visit our StoryMap to view the first deliverable of the Montana Forest Action Plan and learn more about what reaching across fence lines looks like in practice.

Our Focus

The Montana Forest Action Plan will serve as the all hands, all lands plan for addressing forest health and wildfire risk issues across all forested lands in the state of Montana.

Taking Action


Through collaborative, science-focused, cross-boundary and shared landscape management strategies, we can benefit the social, cultural, economic, and biophysical forested landscapes of Montana.

Hands measuring a tree with a tape measurer
Hands measuring a tree with a tape measurer

Collaborative Partnerships


Cross-boundary forest restoration and management prioritizes and amplifies collaborative efforts that bring together stakeholders representing diverse perspectives, interests, and expertise.

Supporting Local Economies and Communities


Montanans have been making their living off the land for generations, whether its working forests or outdoor recreation. Cross-boundary forest restoration and management works to make sure that remains a possibility for generations to come.

Hands measuring a tree with a tape measurer
Hands measuring a tree with a tape measurer

Healthy, Sustainable Forests


At the end of the day, we all have one goal in common: keep Montana's forests healthy and resilient. Cross-boundary forest restoration and management treats our forests as forests, regardless of property boundaries.

Part of Montana's legacy is built on our forests.

The Montana Forest Action Plan will work to make sure that legacy continues by keeping Montana's forests healthy and sustainable for generations to come through cross-boundary forest restoration and management.

Visit the Montana Forest Action Plan

Our Council

The Montana Forest Collaboration Network Advisory Council is a comprehensive group of stakeholders convened to help develop and implement the Montana Forest Action Plan. To view its members or get involved, follow this link.