There is a strategy available to us that will save Flathead Lake.

As summer approaches, the level of Flathead Lake is a pressing concern for many residents and businesses alike. Last year, the lake experienced a significant drop, causing boats to be stranded and posing risks to safety. Businesses suffered, and our community felt the impact.

Why did this happen, and what can be done to prevent a repeat scenario this year?

Historically, Flathead Lake has weathered droughts with strategies in place to maintain a consistent water level throughout the summer months. Measures such as matching inflow with outflow through the dam were implemented, ensuring a steady pool level for recreation and conservation.

However, despite the existence of a comprehensive drought management plan created in 2011, it was never adopted or implemented. This oversight has left a crucial strategy on the table, one that could mitigate the risks posed by fluctuating water levels.

We must mobilize as a community.

The responsibility falls on all of us to ensure that the necessary steps are taken to protect Flathead Lake and the surrounding community. By advocating for the adoption of the dormant drought management plan and urging the tribe responsible for the dam to modify operations to match stream flows, we can safeguard the lake’s stability.

One organization, Fill the Lake, has taken up this cause and offers valuable resources and information on their website. But it’s not enough for a few to carry the burden alone. We must mobilize as a community, reaching out to local authorities and spreading awareness to ensure that action is taken swiftly.

The repercussions of inaction are far-reaching. Beyond the inconvenience to residents and recreational users, the economic impact on local businesses is substantial. Preserving Flathead Lake isn’t just about maintaining a picturesque landscape; it’s about protecting our way of life.

As we approach the summer months, let’s make our voices heard. Visit Fill the Lake’s website, reach out to local representatives, and spread the word. Together, we can ensure that Flathead Lake remains a vibrant and thriving ecosystem for generations to come. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to call or send us an email.