In This Issue:

  • FOAM Regions Renumbered
  • Wildfire Business Recovery info
  • Board of Outfitters updates re Operations Plans
  • Jason Fleury Elected to FOAM Board of Directors
  • FOAM Directors Updates


FOAM Regions Renumbered

You may remember we surveyed our members and folded our original Region 1, the Flathead and Kootenai area, into our old Region 2, Missoula.

Consequently, we’ve renumbered our regions as follows:

Region 1, Flathead, Kootenai, Bitterroot, Clarks’ Fork
Region 2, Missouri
Region 3 Beaverhead, Big Hole
Region 4 Madison
Region 5 Gallatin
Region 6 Yellowstone
Region 7 Big Horn, Ft. Peck

Our membership forms, both paper and online, have been updated with these new region listings. Make sure you select the correct one for 2018 and on into the future.


Wildfire Business Recovery info

This season’s drought and wildfires took their toll on many outdoor recreation providers. Gov. Bullock has created the Business Disaster Recovery website as a “one-stop shop to highlight all the resources available to help businesses and communities in the aftermath of a disaster.”

While there are many resources listed, you might find the PartnerResources the most helpful.


Board of Outfitters Update re Operations Plans

You probably received a letter from the Board of Outfitters describing their efforts to create a new database of outfitter op plan information, primarily to complete an outfitter “private land use” map. The letter urges all outfitters who did not update their op plans by February 2017 or more recently to use one of two ways to update their plans and for those who have new areas of operation to update their current plan records.

The two ways to update your plan, if necessary, are:
1) Use this paper Op Plan form, or
2) Use this interactive online Op Plan form.

Fishing outfitters typically have public land use permits (Blackfoot, Madison, Big Hole, Beaverhead, Smith, etc.) or private land permission forms. The Op Plan sections pertaining to these land uses are very simple to fill out – for the public permit, you only need the name of the agency, name of the permitted water used, and the permit or license number; for private land, the name of the owner, name of the river, stream, or lake used, and the name of the county where it’s located.

For those members who both fish and hunt, the hunting forms are a bit more complicated, depending on whether you’re using public or private land. For public land, name the agency or owner, the permit or license number, and contact info for the agency or owner. For private land, supply the legal name of the property, county, township, range, section (1-36), the 1/4 section and the second 1/4 section of the first 1/4 section OR use the GeoCode of the property, available from the Montana Cadastral, a listing of all ownership information for properties in MT.

To use the Cadastral, search by owner’s name (for example, to find my own property, I entered my county of residence, my last name, then selected my property from the list of names provided. At the top of my individual listing, I found my GeoCode.

Hope this brief outline helps you get up to date with the Board of Outfitters

Jason Fleury Elected to FOAM Board of Directors

WIth the resignation of Pat Straub as director for FOAM’s Bozeman / Gallatin river region, we held an election earlier this year. Jason Fleury of Gallatin Gateway was elected new director for that region.

Jason operates Montana Troutchasers. He’s been an outfitter for many years and threw his hat in the ring for this directorship early in 2017. Jason, welcome to the board!


FOAM Directors Updates

Mark Raisler, Region 2, Missouri:
Headlong into fall here on the Missouri River with the guiding community working hard for another 4 weeks.

A good summer overall here on the Mo with the smoke from the fires thankfully gone after the two rain/snow events of the last 2 weeks. A few cancellations from concerns over smoke but less than 1%. A positive outlook kept most excited and fishing even through the smoke. The weeds were not bad this summer either.

While much greater than Montana’s freestones, we were fortunate to have adequate water with water temps peaking at 68F. We will see BWO’s through Thanksgiving, streamer fishing getting better daily, and Trout Spey anglers showing up more frequently.

Have a great fall and warm winter!

Phil Sgamma, Region 4, Madison:
All eyes are on the Hebgen Dam repair/updates project completion by the end of 2017. It has been a staggering 8 years completing the upgrades to this 100 plus year old dam. Once completed and the intake tubes draw from lower in the lake, we should see the Madison River shine even more as daily temperature gradients will drop.

Great snow pack in YNP and the surrounding regional mountains obviously helped the flows and fish all summer. Fish like water!

The inevitable growth in Montana continues in our region and that proportionally plays out on our rivers and lakes. I saw everyone playing nicely, and being patient with the weekend warriors who may have vehicle back-up-skills dyslexia. How we handle those situations goes a long way in our communities and our profession.

As we see the end in sight for the 2017 season, and the horses are heading to the barn, keep in mind this is when we get fatigued and tired. Keep diligent and safe out there, and show patience to the anglers that insist on continuing to enthusiastically fish poorly despite our best efforts. Our expectations and our clients often time are radically different. Help them to enjoy their day even if they can’t ‘get the drift’.

Here’s to a strong winter in 2018.