This October, MT Fish, Wildlife and Parks purchased 106-acres near Somers and along the north shore of Flathead Lake – an expansive sandy beach at low lake levels (from fall till spring), and safe and fun shallow waters to swim and recreate in during high water levels (summer time). On land, wetlands and grasslands on the property provide important habitat and nesting grounds for numerous birds. Enjoy and protect them!
Montana’s newest State Park will be suitable for a variety of recreational offerings and amenities, such as trails, hand-launch boat access, picnic tables, and more. MT Fish, Wildlife and Parks is working on a long-term vision and management plan for the new State Park – a process which will take several months and lots of public input.
To comment on proposed amenities check the Draft Environmental Assessment at https://fwp.mt.gov/news/public-notices, participate in a public meeting on Oct. 21st at 6 p.m. on Zoom, or submit comments by Nov. 6 . Information on the public meeting will be posted at https://fwp.mt.gov/aboutfwp/regions/region1.
While the state works on a long-term management plan that develops public access and amenties, the state asks that the public recreate responsibly at the property and follow day-use rules, while also respecting neighboring private property:
- No camping or campfires
- Leave No Trace
- Pack It In, Pack it Out.
For decades, the Sliter family permitted public access to their property on the lake to locals. But they hoped for a better long-term solution. Our R2L partner the Flathead Land Trust was an key intermediary in negotiating a deal that includes both conservation and recreational goals. Thank you so much to the Sliter family for their vision and generosity, to Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks, and countless other partners, donors and people who helped make Somers Beach State Park a reality – not only creating much needed recreational access to the lake for people to enjoy, but also protecting important wetlands and shoreline habitat on Flathead Lake’s north shore.
R2L partners, including Flathead Land Trust, Montana State Parks Foundation, Flathead Lakers and Flathead Lake Biological Station, are raising funds to match a generous donation by the Sliter family, to the parks’ operations and maintenance. Join us in supporting the Somers Beach State Park by making a donation to the River to Lake Conservation Fund, or by sending a check to Flathead Lakers, P.O. Box 70, Polson, MT 59860 (add note on check: “Somers Beach”).