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Last Friday, I packed snow gear, ice climbing clothes and skis into my Toyota and left for Christmas break at home – the Flathead Valley. Regardless of college commitments, time constraints or weather, time in the wilderness is never idly spent. The practice binds Montanans together, in an understanding gained only through experience.

That very week, the Rocky Mountain Front Heritage Act and the North Fork Watershed Protection Act were passed. Our thankfulness goes to Rep. Steve Daines and Sens. Jon Tester and Steve Walsh for their devotion, teamwork and effort to pass these bills.

A day in which Montana’s mountains and lands are preserved and protected is a day worth remembering. The acts protect two of Montana’s most beautiful and unique landscapes. The Heritage Act protects the Rocky Mountain Front, a recreational and habitat treasure encompassing the Bob Marshall Wilderness – my childhood backyard. The Protection Act preserves the North Fork Watershed area from future mining or drilling; a noteworthy protection for this elegant landscape sitting at the foot of Glacier National Park, vital to Flathead water purity.

This type of progress does not come without effort and commitment, on local and governmental levels alike. As we enjoy this snowy season, let’s remark on the great achievements sustaining Montana’s quintessence.

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Anjeli Doty

Bozeman

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