Conservation Projects

I am grateful that the Gallatin River Task Force is leading the charge to protect and respect our rivers.

JeNelle Johnson

Community Member

Big Sky Community Storm Water Conservation Garden

The Community Storm Water Conservation Garden models landscaping practices that will improve water quality! Our garden, located along the west side of the entrance to Lone Peak High School, filters pollutants by collecting and slowing runoff from the parking lot and access road. Native plants fill the garden and require little or no irrigation water to thrive. We hope the garden inspires businesses and individuals in Big Sky to choose trout-friendly practices for their own landscapes.

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West Fork Restoration Project

In an attempt to stem an increasing level of harmful nitrogen found in the West Fork of the Gallatin River in Big Sky, we partnered with Big Sky Resort to enhance streamside vegetation with newly planted willows, which act as filters for fertilizer and wastewater runoff into the West Fork along the Big Sky Golf Course. This project was funded by the Montana Department of Environmental Quality and Big Sky Area Resort Tax District.

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Upper Gallatin River Access Restoration Projects

The Gallatin River Task Force and the Custer Gallatin National Forest have a long-term partnership to restore streambanks and improve river access in Gallatin Canyon. The first project at the Moose Creek Flat Campground, north of Big Sky along the Gallatin, will help minimize the harmful effects of loving a river too much. We have initiated a plan to stabilize the stream banks and vegetation at this very popular site by creating access points that include a boat ramp, kayak launch, and trails, resulting in a future of improved water quality and fish habitat. This project will be followed by work at Deer Creek, Baetis Alley, and Doe Creek.

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Big Sky Sustainable Water Solutions Forum

One of the biggest challenges to face our community is how growth will impact our water supply, and what to do with our wastewater. By taking on the role of host for this initiative, the Task Force is helping guide the discussions as we work toward developing a water resource management plan for our growing resort community. The forum includes a very diverse group of more than 35 local, regional, and state stakeholders that we believe will solve this very important issue.

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Big Sky Water Conservation

Big Sky Water Conservation is one of only two municipal water conservation program in Montana. Fresh, clean water is a limited resource and the amount of water each of us uses every day impacts our neighbors, local fisheries and wildlife, and downstream users. Through our program, we aim to reduce current water use and plan for a more efficient future use by incentivizing and awarding our community’s participation in efforts that prioritize water conservation.

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Upper Gallatin Drought & Water Supply Planning

The Task Forces facilitated a series of public meetings to engage the community about drought and water supply issues. Through a locally-driven, stakeholder-lead process the community discussed impacts and vulnerabilities to plan mitigation and response actions to build a more resilient community and watershed. This effort is part of a larger, basin-wide partnership between conservation districts, non-profits, federal agencies and other interested parties to forge resilience against the threats to water resources in the Upper Missouri Basin.

Join the conversation today!

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Big Sky Water Wise Landscape Guide

Big Sky’s skyrocketing summer water use is not a trend we can sustain into the future. Luckily, the biggest opportunity to put water conservation into practice starts at home. The Task Force produced the Big Sky Water Wise Landscape Guide in collaboration with local nurseries, landscapers, irrigators, and nonprofits to encourage practical strategies that save water outdoors. These recommendations will help you realize significant savings in money, water, and time while creating beautiful landscapes that are suitable to the local environment, and work towards long-term resilience for Big Sky’s water resources.

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Fundraiser, Celebration & Auction

July 28, 2024

Join us on July 28th to make a meaningful impact in protecting the Gallatin River - your participation is vital to preserving this precious resource for future generations.