Following is the Missoula Area National Forest/Bureau of Land Management weekly recreation update as compiled by the Missoula Ranger District:
Check out the Lolo National Forest home page at www.fs.fed.us/r1/lolo
LOLO NATIONAL FOREST
Missoula Ranger District, (406) 329-3814: Rock Creek campgrounds are now open with full services and a $5/night fee. The Lewis and Clark Campground) is also open with full services with a $10/night fee. Personal Use Mushroom permits can be acquired at the Missoula Ranger District office Monday-Friday, 7:30-4:30.
Seeley Lake Ranger District, (406) 677-2233: Spring has sprung! The Morrell Falls and North Fork Blackfoot Trailheads are not accessible to vehicles. Higher elevation roads continue to be closed to wheeled traffic due to snow and soft roadbed conditions. Loons have returned to the valley and are selecting nesting sights! Clearwater Canoe Trail is open. Big Larch and Lake Alva Campgrounds and boat launches are open; no water or garbage service; no fees. PACK IT IN/PACK IT OUT. Please join us for the 9th annual Loon and Fish Festival, May 26 and 27 at the community center.
Ninemile Ranger District, (406) 626-5201: Please exercise caution on the Ninemile and Foothills roads due to high vehicle traffic. Personal Use mushroom permits can be acquired at the Ninemile Ranger Station Monday-Friday, 8-4:30. The Historic Ninemile Remount Depot Visitor's Center will open for the season May 26. For more information on road and trail conditions please contact the Ninemile Ranger District.
Superior Ranger District, (406) 822-4233: Reservations for both the Up Up 40 and Thompson Peak Lookouts are filling up, so get yours today for this summer's adventure! Snow levels are receding but travel over Hoodoo Pass (Road #250) and the Little Joe (Road #282) is still impassable. Hiwawatha (Old Milwaukee grade) and Norpac have on going fiber optic construction, please us caution. The Slowey Campground (I-90 exit 37, 2.8 miles on the Frontage Road) is open with a $10/night fee.
Plains/Thompson Falls Ranger District, (406) 826-3821: Cascade Campground on Highway 135 and both Clark Memorial and Cooper King Campgrounds on Thompson River will be open for the season on May 25. Prospect Creek Road is open from Highway 200 into Idaho. The Bend Ranger Station cabin rental facility is available for reservations.
SMOKEJUMPERS VISITOR CENTER, Aerial Fire Depot (406) 329-4934:
The Smokejumpers Visitors Center is closed for the season. Call to schedule group tours.
BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT:
Missoula Field Office: (406) 329-3914: The roads to Garnet Ghost Town are finally passable for trucks with only a few snow patches in shady areas. The best access for two wheeled drive vehicles is up Bear Gulch from I-90. Four wheel drives can make it into Garnet from the Range Road off Highway 200. With warm weather, the Range Road should be passable to cars in another week. Keep in mind that Gardnet Ghost Town is a fee area with a charge of $2 for folks over 12 years old.
LOLO PASS VISITOR CENTER, Lochsa Ranger District, Powell Office: (208) 942-3113: Lolo Pass Visitor Center and warming hut are closed for remodeling. Whitesands Campground is open without services. The Powell and Windover Campgrounds will be open for the Memorial Day weekend with limited services. all other campgrounds will be open prior to the 4th of July weekend.
BITTERROOT NATIONAL FOREST, Hamilton (406) 363-7100; Stevensville (406) 777-5461; Darby (406) 821-3913; Sula (406) 821-3201; West Fork (406) 821-3269: Recreation Web site: www.fs.fed.us/r1/bitterroot. Summer cabin rentals are available; please call districts to make reservations. The Darby Historical Visitor Center is open Monday-Saturday, 8:30-4:30 p.m. and Sunday from 12:30-4:30 p.m. Recreational use mushroom permits are available at all districts; however, commercial mushroom permits are only available from the Darby Ranger District. The Magruder Corridor road is open to Paradise but not all the way to Elk City. Highway 38 (the Skalkaho Highway) is still closed. Most campgrounds open, but without services at this time (call districts for specific details.) The boat ramp at Lake Como is in place. Please leave your favorite recreation area clean and do not litter!