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Fort Smith, MT - Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area is seeking input in developing options for a timeline to complete construction to rehabilitate the river access parking sites at the Afterbay Dam North River Access, and the 3-Mile River Ranch Access. The scoping meeting will be co-hosted by the Bighorn River Alliance and Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area on Tuesday, May 17 at 7:00 pm at the Bighorn Baptist Church in Fort Smith.
This project represents the first major improvements to the two sites since the park was created in 1968. Since the sites were originally built, use by anglers and other visitors had dramatically increased. The two sites now support a high volume of traffic and are used by large recreational vehicles with trailers hauling boats. This has caused safety problems with vehicles sliding into the river at the ramp facilities and becoming stuck in ditches alongside the sites. In addition, parking is difficult and could be dangerous for all vehicles. As currently constructed, the launch ramps are subject to erosion, deteriorating road surfaces and flooding. The project when completed will significantly improve these facilities.
Input will be vital in developing a construction schedule that will minimize and/or mitigate disruption to anglers and visitors.
Following this scoping meeting two to three options will be developed and then presented to the public for comment at an open house the week of June 6 at Fort Smith. The date, time, and location will be forthcoming.
For questions or additional information, please contact the National Park Service at: 406-666-2412.