Hunters who purchased licenses for northern Montana's Sage Creek chronic wasting disease hunt need to be aware that winter weather will restrict travel.
The hunt, which opens Saturday, Jan. 6, is limited to a small area north of Chester that abuts the Canadian border. The area is remote with few paved roads, no nearby towns and at least 20 miles north of U.S. Highway 2.
After the New Year’s weekend storm, a few of the area’s county gravel roads have been plowed. But before the hunt ends, either by reaching the 157-deer quota or Feb. 15, winter storms with more snow and wind will likely return, making travel difficult or even impossible at times.
Anyone driving in this area should carry emergency gear, including food and water, chains, shovel and extra clothing.
The Montana Department of Transportation has a website dedicated to travel tips, including what to carry in a vehicle for winter travel: http://mdt.mt.gov/travinfo/.
As for the hunt quota, Fish, Wildlife and Parks will publish a weekly news release each Tuesday. The news release will be on the FWP website, http://fwp.mt.gov/ and the FWP Region 4 Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/MontanaFWP.R4/.
Whatever the weather, hunters when afield should have the entire CWD hunt packet sent to each hunter. The packet has rules for the hunt and a map.
The Sage Creek CWD hunt is meant to determine the prevalence of CWD within the hunt area. To achieve this goal FWP needs the help and cooperation of hunters and landowners. Unethical hunters can lead to limited opportunities on private land.