Help Protect Wild Rivers in the Salmon-Challis National Forest in Idaho

Idaho’s Salmon-Challis National Forest is revising its forest plan, leaving the potential to protect dozens of free-flowing rivers through the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act.

Middle Fork of the Salmon river, one of the original 8 Wild and Scenic Rivers. Runs north from near Stanley to near Salmon,Idaho. Drops 3000 feet in the 100 miles it runs. Looking north along trail to Johnson Pt. | Michael Melford

The Salmon-Challis National Forest in central Idaho, headwaters of the world-renowned Salmon River, is currently revising its forest plan. This process occurs just once every 20 years or so, making it incredibly important that the Forest gets it right. While getting a new Wild and Scenic river designated by Congress often takes upwards of 10 years, forest plan revisions have the potential to protect dozens of free-flowing rivers through the planning process – a once in a generation opportunity.

Part of the plan revision process is inventorying and protecting the remaining free-flowing streams on the Forest that qualify as “outstanding” under the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act. The Salmon-Challis National Forest has done a great job on its draft inventory, finding 69 streams totaling 708 miles to be free-flowing and possessing at least one outstanding value. But opposition groups are pressuring the Forest to protect far fewer streams, and in some cases none at all.

We need your help. Please send a comment to the Forest supporting the protection of all streams in the Salmon-Challis National Forest’s “Draft Wild and Scenic Eligibility Inventory.”

Comments on the Draft Eligibility Inventory, due July 16, can be emailed to:

For more information, take a look at the Forest’s story map to review their recommendations. You can also submit a supportive comment through their portal. For those who want to dig even deeper, take a look at the Forest’s Draft Eligibility Report.

During the year of the 50th Anniversary of the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act, and at a time when public lands are being assaulted from all directions, we need more of our last free-flowing rivers to be protected, not less. Thank you for your help!

11 responses to “Help Protect Wild Rivers in the Salmon-Challis National Forest in Idaho

  1. We need to watch Zinke and Trump; they care naught for our wild lands, wild rivers, oceans, etc.
    They are both complicit in trying to ruin this part of our lands….the fuels from boat motors and four wheelers are guilty as heck in contaminating the wild lands and our waters.

  2. Our great Rivers need to flow freely as they have for hundreds of years before mankind interfered and stopped their flow by putting in dams. The ecosystems and environments are much better when our country’s wonderful fish, sea animals and marine mammals could benefit greatly from the natural resources that are theirs as well as ours. Mother Nature always provides and always knows best. Let our Rivers FLOW!!

  3. Please don’t allow these natural resources to be pillaged and plundered by those who only want to line their deep pockets with the money gained from the destruction of our forests and rivers. We must keep our watersheds protected at all costs. The Salmon-Challis National Forest needs to remain as it is, undisturbed, wild, and free.

  4. We should not have to ask you to protect our waters. IT IS YOUR JOB! I do not know what to say to you to make you realize the damage that will be done. I HOPE GREED IS NOT YOUR GOD! PLEASE STOP ALL POLLUTERS OF OUR CLEAN WATERS. THIS IS THE ONLY PLANET WE HAVE!

  5. Please continue your protections of the free flowing rivers in the Salmon- Challis National Forest It would be tragic to lose these protections And the revenue it generates

  6. I was lucky enough to camp and mule deer hunt on the salmon river in Frank Church last season with a general over the counter tag.. This area was spectacular, rugged and a joy to camp in. To open this peaceful region to any commercial use would greatly detract from what may be some of our finest wilderness.. Please strive to pass this region to the next generation as it has been preserved, Thank you

  7. Please continue your protections for ALL 708 miles of free-flowing streams contained within the 69 rivers and creeks in the Salmon-Challis National Forest. It would be a shame to lose these national treasures.

    Thank you for doing whatever you can to protect these superb watersheds and sublime natural resources.

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