Mount Dean Stone

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Open Space Acquisition Proposal

The Missoula City Council has set a public hearing for Monday, November 23 to consider the purchase of 350 acres of open space land on Mount Dean Stone to provide a new publicly accessible recreational trail and protect scenic open space and wildlife habitat. Check out "Key Dates" at right for details.

The Mount Dean Stone Corridor will open over five miles of new trail route on the south side of Missoula, above the South Hills Spur and the Barmeyer Trail. The Corridor promotes health, wellness, and social equity through the delivery of unparalleled recreational opportunities. Conserving these lands will help Missoula adapt to climate change and plan for sustainable growth that is responsive to community needs. This fall, the City Council will consider spending $925,000 in Open Space funds to acquire the 350-acre Mount Dean Stone Corridor from Five Valleys Land Trust, which Five Valleys Land Trust will match with a $1.6 million-dollar contribution to the project.

Promoting Health, Wellness, and Social Equity

The Mount Dean Stone Corridor promotes health, wellness, and social equity by significantly expanding Missoula’s trail system. The trail on the Corridor is being developed at an 8% grade, which is less steep than many of the trails around Missoula and is suitable for a broad array of Missoula’s residents. The Mount Dean Stone Corridor will expand the limited number of places where the City’s recreation programming can give people of all ages the opportunity to grow, experience, learn, and enjoy the natural world around them. Delivering both physical and mental health benefits, the proposed conservation lands will provide an outstanding recreational corridor where people can get exercise and connect with each other in nature.

Adapting to Climate Change and Protecting Human Safety

The Corridor proposal helps meet the goals and strategies prioritized in the 2020 Climate Ready Missoula Plan and Missoula County’s 2018 Community Wildfire Protection Plan. Located adjacent to the City, the acquisition of the Mount Dean Stone Corridor would help the Missoula community adapt to climate change by eliminating residential development in a high wildfire risk area, reducing wildfire risk to both structures and first responders. Last fall, in order to promote long-term forest health and reduce wildfire risk, Five Valleys Land Trust completed a forest health improvement project on the Mount Dean Stone Corridor lands closest to Missoula. Under Conservation Lands Management, the City can further buffer developed areas from wildfire through appropriate forest management.

Winding through scenic forested land at the edge of Missoula, the Corridor will also provide a shady place to get outside in a warming world. Its carefully designed trail system will provide exceptional recreational experiences close to where people live, which will promote non-motorized transportation and reduce emissions from vehicles as well as dependency on fossil fuels.

Planning with Vision

The Corridor balances land uses by conserving land with significant public access and natural resource values without reducing the availability of land that is suitable for meeting Missoula’s affordable housing needs. Missoula’s Growth Policy guides residential and commercial development inward where services and housing can be developed more economically and efficiently. The Growth Policy also recognizes that a primary, character-defining feature of Missoula is its connection with natural and scenic resources and that outdoor recreation is an essential part of the Missoula community’s character and way of life. The Corridor proposal supports Missoula’s efforts to provide a safe and healthy quality of life for our growing community through accessible open space conservation and recreation programs on lands appropriate for conservation.

Community Support

Over the last five years, hundreds of Missoula residents, as well as dozens of businesses and partnering organizations and agencies, have celebrated and invested in the conservation of Mount Dean Stone. They’ve pulled weeds, designed and developed trails, shared their expertise, and contributed generously to this grassroots community effort. With their support, Five Valleys Land Trust facilitated the Mount Dean Stone Corridor proposal and brings $1.6 million dollars in match to the project.


Open Space Acquisition Proposal

The Missoula City Council has set a public hearing for Monday, November 23 to consider the purchase of 350 acres of open space land on Mount Dean Stone to provide a new publicly accessible recreational trail and protect scenic open space and wildlife habitat. Check out "Key Dates" at right for details.

The Mount Dean Stone Corridor will open over five miles of new trail route on the south side of Missoula, above the South Hills Spur and the Barmeyer Trail. The Corridor promotes health, wellness, and social equity through the delivery of unparalleled recreational opportunities. Conserving these lands will help Missoula adapt to climate change and plan for sustainable growth that is responsive to community needs. This fall, the City Council will consider spending $925,000 in Open Space funds to acquire the 350-acre Mount Dean Stone Corridor from Five Valleys Land Trust, which Five Valleys Land Trust will match with a $1.6 million-dollar contribution to the project.

Promoting Health, Wellness, and Social Equity

The Mount Dean Stone Corridor promotes health, wellness, and social equity by significantly expanding Missoula’s trail system. The trail on the Corridor is being developed at an 8% grade, which is less steep than many of the trails around Missoula and is suitable for a broad array of Missoula’s residents. The Mount Dean Stone Corridor will expand the limited number of places where the City’s recreation programming can give people of all ages the opportunity to grow, experience, learn, and enjoy the natural world around them. Delivering both physical and mental health benefits, the proposed conservation lands will provide an outstanding recreational corridor where people can get exercise and connect with each other in nature.

Adapting to Climate Change and Protecting Human Safety

The Corridor proposal helps meet the goals and strategies prioritized in the 2020 Climate Ready Missoula Plan and Missoula County’s 2018 Community Wildfire Protection Plan. Located adjacent to the City, the acquisition of the Mount Dean Stone Corridor would help the Missoula community adapt to climate change by eliminating residential development in a high wildfire risk area, reducing wildfire risk to both structures and first responders. Last fall, in order to promote long-term forest health and reduce wildfire risk, Five Valleys Land Trust completed a forest health improvement project on the Mount Dean Stone Corridor lands closest to Missoula. Under Conservation Lands Management, the City can further buffer developed areas from wildfire through appropriate forest management.

Winding through scenic forested land at the edge of Missoula, the Corridor will also provide a shady place to get outside in a warming world. Its carefully designed trail system will provide exceptional recreational experiences close to where people live, which will promote non-motorized transportation and reduce emissions from vehicles as well as dependency on fossil fuels.

Planning with Vision

The Corridor balances land uses by conserving land with significant public access and natural resource values without reducing the availability of land that is suitable for meeting Missoula’s affordable housing needs. Missoula’s Growth Policy guides residential and commercial development inward where services and housing can be developed more economically and efficiently. The Growth Policy also recognizes that a primary, character-defining feature of Missoula is its connection with natural and scenic resources and that outdoor recreation is an essential part of the Missoula community’s character and way of life. The Corridor proposal supports Missoula’s efforts to provide a safe and healthy quality of life for our growing community through accessible open space conservation and recreation programs on lands appropriate for conservation.

Community Support

Over the last five years, hundreds of Missoula residents, as well as dozens of businesses and partnering organizations and agencies, have celebrated and invested in the conservation of Mount Dean Stone. They’ve pulled weeds, designed and developed trails, shared their expertise, and contributed generously to this grassroots community effort. With their support, Five Valleys Land Trust facilitated the Mount Dean Stone Corridor proposal and brings $1.6 million dollars in match to the project.


Questions about the project? Ask Open Space Program Manager Grant Carlson.

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