Timber sale means East Side Reservoir Road will be closed on weekdays during the winter

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A John Deere 2154D with a Waratah dangle head processor delimbs logs during the Flathead Timber Tour at the Liger Timber Sale in Flathead National Forest on Thursday, Oct. 17. (Casey Kreider/Daily Inter Lake)

The East Side of the Hungry Horse Reservoir Road (Road #38) will be closed immediately to motorized traffic this winter on weekdays due to a timber sale.

Flathead National Forest, Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation, and winning bidder St. Onge Logging of Kalispell are conducting work on the Liger Good Neighbor Authority Timber Sale near the Hungry Horse Reservoir.

Recreation access will temporarily change as a result of the sale. Over snow vehicles will be able to use the road to mile post 37.5 on Saturdays and Sundays while the closure is in effect. The road is closed beyond this point to all motorized use annually from Dec. 1 to May 14 to protect winter wildlife habitat.

Parking on the road will be available at the Desert Mountain parking area just outside Martin City or at the junction with Abbot Bay Road, Forest Road #5301, approximately five miles south of Martin City.

Snowmobilers who plan on using this road on the weekends should use caution on the plowed road by staying to the right side, and riding single file at a moderate speed. Timber sale operators will not haul on weekends, but may be plowing or conducting other work. The road will be open to snowmobilers each weekend from 5 p.m. on Friday to 12:01 a.m. Monday.

This is a popular snowmobile route, and people looking for other snowmobile opportunities in the area during weekdays should consider Desert Mountain trails as an alternative or other trails on the Forest.

The Liger Sale is part of the Hungry Lion Project that the forest issued a decision on in 2018. The Liger Sale uses the Good Neighbor Authority, which was part of the 2018 Farm Bill and allows the U.S. Forest Service to partner with state agencies to achieve forest management objectives and restoration. The sale is the first to use GNA on Flathead National Forest.

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