Trumbull Creek

Exploring a forested path, Trumbull Creek in MontanaSolitude found along the banks of Trumbull Creek. Photo credit: Steven Gnam

For generations, the land around Montana’s Trumbull Creek has provided forestry jobs for the local economy, clean water, critical fish and wildlife habitat, and recreation for residents and visitors, including hunting, fishing, cross country skiing, and hiking. Now those benefits are protected forever through a conservation easement that bars commercial and residential development while guaranteeing public access and preserving sustainable forestry.

Trumbull Creek is located in the heart of the Crown of the Continent eco-region, the last remaining stronghold for several native fish and wildlife species, including grizzly bear, Canada lynx, and westslope cutthroat trout. Conserving these lands helps ensure clean water and healthy habitat for these federally listed threatened and endangered species.

Residents of nearby towns of Whitefish and Columbia Falls have long used the forest as their communal backyard. And local outdoor education programs, including the Flathead Family Forestry Expo and the Ravenwood Outdoor Learning Center, offer self-guided trail tours, forest education classes, and environmental science and wilderness survival workshops on the land.

Secured by The Trust for Public Land, the easement protects more than 7,000 acres owned by F.H. Stoltze Land & Lumber Co. State and federal partners funded the $9.5 million easement, with Stoltze making a significant donation of land value. The project was completed with the help of our generous donors and funding from the Land and Water Conservation Fund through the USDA Forest Legacy Program and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Cooperative Endangered Species Conservation Fund program. Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks will hold the conservation easement and monitor its implementation.

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Since 1972, The Trust for Public Land has protected more than 3.3 million acres and completed more than 5,400 park and conservation projects.