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Entries in Glacier National Park (79)


Glacier biologists look at project to protect native fish

GNP photo(WEST GLACIER)- Glacier National Park biologists believe improving a fish barrier might be the best way to protect native species in a lake on the park’s west side.

The park says over the years, the park’s native fish populations have been “severely compromised” by the invasion and spread of non-native fish in Glacier’s rivers and streams. Biologists say that’s happened in a variety of ways, such as non-native fish eating native fish, becoming hybrid breeds and competing for food.

That’s raised concern over preserving Glacier’s native species, especially bull trout and westslope cutthroat trout.

Biologists say of the seventeen lakes supporting bull trout on the west side of Glacier, nine have already been compromised by non-native lake trout and a tenth is being taken over by brook trout. Data shows the non-native trout are increasing, while bull trout populations are dropping, and that the lake trout have become the top predator species in those lakes monitored over time. Studies show the bull trout are in danger of disappearing altogether.

The park thought Quartz Lake, which is part of the North Fork of the Flathead drainage east of Polebridge had been free of non-native fish and built a barrier there in 2004. Before the barrier was finished in 2005, biologists did find some lake trout in Quartz Lake. The park and other agencies have been experimenting on ways to eliminate the lake trout.

Biologists say that work has been “promising”, and now the park is proposing to make an improved fish barrier on Quartz Creek to lessen the threat of invasion by non-native fish.

The park is taking comments on the proposed project and more information is available from the GNP website.


New clues emerge in fate of Glacier hiker

(WEST GLACIER)- Glacier National Park rangers are waiting for snow and ice to clear in hopes of solving the three-year old mystery of a hiker who disappeared on the rugged Floral Park Route.

27-year old Yi-Jien Hwa, a native of Malaysia, disappeared while on an extended 100-mile hike in the park’s rugged high country three years ago this month. Family reported him overdue three days after he failed to show up, and a massive search effort last for more than a month without turning up more than a few articles of clothing.

But now, Glacier officials say a hiker found some additional clothing on July 3rd and subsequent searches have located equipment that Hwa may have owned, as well as bone fragments which have been sent in for DNA testing.

Rangers suspect the items may have been washed down from some cliffs in rain and snow. But they have to wait for the terrain to clear before searching the rough terrain.


Montana authorities watching for missing kids

(MISSOULA)- Authorities across Montana are on the lookout this weekend for a Missoula man, and the 3 and 7-year old girls he kidnapped more than a month ago.

Matthew Chapman is believed to be traveling with his two daughters, whom he took from his estranged wife in a custody dispute.

It's known Chapman has contacts in Montana and Wyoming, and the new theory police are working is that the trio may be headed toward Glacier National Park, possible driving a 1990 Dodge Caravan. Law enforcement are warning he should be considered armed and dangerous.

KPAX TV has the latest on the story, including a description of the suspect and the two girls here.


Glacier identifies motorcycle crash victim as Alberta man

(WEST GLACIER)- Glacier National Park rangers now say it was an Alberta man who was killed when his motorcycle crashed over the weekend.

The accident happened 10-miles east of Lake McDonald Lodge on the busy Going-to-the-Sun highway.

Rangers say 70-year old Richard Fish from Cardston, Alberta was riding east near the Logan Creek comfort station when he lost control of his bike, skidding into the on-coming traffic. Fisher was pronounced dead at the scene. No one else was injured.

The National Park Service is investigating the accident, with assistance from the Flathead County Sheriff/Coroner’s Office and the Montana Highway Patrol.  

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