Crazies in court

Outdoor Life news editor Dac Collins updates the court fight over access in the Crazy Mountains. The Forest Service has stopped defending access established via prescribed easement, and in one case, built a new trail that avoided conflicts with landowners, but also excluded the public from the process.

In 2017, the Forest Service suspended Yellowstone District Ranger Alex Sienkiewicz for writing a memo that outlined to staff how they could work to maintain public access on these trails that access the Crazies via prescriptive easement. Sienkiewicz later got his job back, but the Forest Service has backed off defending the public's right to access the Crazy Mountains.

This may not end well

The ramped up wolf hunting and trapping on Yellowstone National Park's northern border in Montana is now threatening tourism businesses in the state. In 2021, the state legislature approved laws that were signed by Gov. Greg Gianforte. The laws dramatically loosened the rules governing the killing of wolves in Montana.

About 20 Yellowstone wolves have been killed so far, including seven that were part of the Phantom Lake Pack, which is now considered eliminated. The result has been increasing national, and international attention on Montana's loosened regs, and increasing calls for the Feds to reinstate endangered species protection for wolves in the Northern Rockies.