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Sunday, December 10, 2006

 

And, another partner to thank...


We're grateful for the power of the Web. Without access to the world online, we would not be able to make a living surrounded by Montana's great fishing rivers.

Thanks, Technorati.

Technorati Profile


Scott

 

Early December '06, and we're picking up speed...


We are gathering momentum, and bringing onboard some terrific new partners and friends. Check them out, please.

Montana Test is whre you go to get the straight story on outdoor sportsgear and more. You'll find they are becoming an integral part of Insider Fly Fishing. Visit them here:

MontanaTest.com

Project Healing Waters is outstanding. Another manifestation of what fly fishing can do to help people connect again to something genuine, that heals. We are proud to partner with these folks. They believe what we believe. Join us, and join them:

ProjectHealingWaters.org

Here's more of what is going on right now:

1st Conservation and Fly Fishing Social Networking Community Launches Online


Best,

Scott

onFlyFishing Fly Fishing Directory

Insider Fly Fishing. Join us Now.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

 

Insider Fly Fishing ... for Insiders!


SUBJ: FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 1st Fly Fishing Social Networking
Community Launches Online




FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE


EXCELLENT FLY FISHING, 'SECRET STREAMS' AND CLEAN WATER
INITIATIVES LURE MEMBERS TO INSIDER FLY FISHING

BOZEMAN, MT. (December 8, 2006) - Insider Fly Fishing
Insider Fly Fishing

For all the moments that serious anglers can't be out fishing, Insider Fly Fishing will help them keep a toe in the water. The newly launched mega-interactive site gives members access to some of the most comprehensive content ever devised on all aspects of the sport. Insider Fly Fishing allows anglers to share their own insights and keep in touch with one another. Members can fish for bargains as well as give back to the conservation of fisheries they love best.

Insider Fly Fishing founder Scott T. Smith describes the site as a blend of MySpace, Yahoo!, a conservation news service and a customized portal entirely dedicated to the sport, lore and love of fly fishing. Within minutes of joining, members, known as "Insiders," can hook into fresh, lively content they won't find anywhere else, and exchange insider info with other anglers on places to fish, stay, dine and explore all over the world. Insider members will get bargains, sweepstakes, photo galleries, their own personal webpage and email, along with the serious business of preserving fish habitat and clean water.

"The goal here is to give those who love fly fishing a home base built of the newest web technologies," says Smith. "That means Insiders learn secret fishing spots, get the info that usually only locals know, have access to dozens of online tools and deals, all while allowing them to keep in touch with angling friends as well as the latest gear trends."

There are forums and a place to chat with other Insiders about everything from tying a salmon fly to casting a line in Patagonia. Insider Fly Fishing also partners with some serious conservation muscle, so it's simple for members to make a real difference in the fight for clean sporting water.

Smith is passionate about the idea of community that characterizes the world of fly fishing.

"Everywhere you go to fly fish, there's a wonderful interconnected community you encounter," explains Smith. "That's the experience we re-create here, on a worldwide scale, encompassing all its productive water."

An Insider membership costs just pennies per day, and provides valuable services and connections to the rest of the fishing world that can't be found anywhere else. A $7.95 monthly membership allows Insiders to:

o Get their own personal, ever-expanding online Secret Streams Gearbox. packed with an own easy to create website, blog, email address, online journal, private instant messaging, public chatterbox chat, audio capabilities, and lots more.

o Put their personal profile in an exclusive directory accessible to every other member of Insider Fly Fishing.

o Easily keep in touch with fly fishing friends at the Reel Folks forum, and sound off on the recreational and conservation issues that matter most to them.

o Catch up on the latest fly fishing and conservation news with What's On The Rise news center.

o GiftBack to favorite fly fishing and conservation organizations -- and get customers to chip in, too.

o Take advantage of Members' only Reel Bargains, Sweepstakes and Reel Deals.

Insider Fly Fishing is much more than a "web site". “Interactive and dynamic, it doesn't just sit there, as the word "site" implies," says Smith. "It works for you, and keeps you connected to fly fishing year-round.”


For complete information about Insider Fly Fishing
membership and additional membership benefits,
please contact President Scott T. Smith at
mailto:admin@onflyfishing.com , phone 406.586.4112 or visit
the new site on the Web at
Insider Fly Fishing

# # #


Contact:

Scott T. Smith, President
Insider Fly Fishing and onFlyFishing, Inc.
116 Silverwood Drive
Bozeman, MT. 59715 USA

Tel: 406.586.4112
Email: admin@onflyfishing.com


== I ==








...

 

Insider Fly Fishing ... for the PROs


SUBJ: 1st Fly Fishing and Conservation Social Networking
Community Launches Online




FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE


EXCELLENT FLY FISHING, 'SECRET STREAMS' AND CLEAN WATER
INITIATIVES LURE MEMBERS TO INSIDER FLY FISHING

BOZEMAN, MT. (December 8, 2006) - Insider Fly Fishing
http://www.InsiderFlyFishing.com

Insider Fly Fishing is becoming known as the attractor
pattern of the Internet throughout the fly fishing industry
and conservation world. The newly launched site has the
look, resources and can't-resist goods to turn consumers'
heads and keep them coming back, while delivering
exceptional results to fly fishing professionals, dealers
and membership organizations throughout North America and
all over the world. It's also dedicated to preserving clean
water and healthy fisheries everywhere while fighting the
effects of global warming, a win for fish populations and habitat
as well as for sportsmen and PROs.

Insider Fly Fishing founder Scott T. Smith describes the
site as a blend of MySpace, YouTube, Yahoo! and a
conservation news service dedicated to the sport, lore and
love of fly fishing. Insider Fly Fishing is a place where
businesses can instantly create their own online presence
that's automatically linked to the rest of the professional
fly fishing world, and all the passionate anglers in the
network worldwide. And it provides an easy entrance to the
new Web technologies today's angling-related businesses must
have to survive.

"Today's leading-edge Internet technologies put the smallest
shops, individual guides and other fly fishing pros on a
level playing field with the largest corporations and big
box stores," says Smith. "We've just made it affordable and
push-button simple to use, because clearly many of the PROs
in this business don't have any extra time, no IT staff and
none of the marketing muscle and money that the Big Boys and
Girls do."

Smith is passionate about fly fishing, not only as a sport,
but as a model of the best that an industry can be.

"The business of fly fishing was created by incredibly
dedicated people, individuals who worked long hours on their
own because they wanted to make the fishing experience truly
sublime," explains Smith. "That's still the heart of fly
fishing. Unfortunately, bigger companies got wind of the
potential profits, and now threaten to take over big chunks
of the market while by-passing the soul of the sport, as
well as the issue of good fishing habitat."

Without the benefit of ever-changing Web technology, says
Smith, many fly fishing PROs will miss the boat. Insider
Fly Fishing directly addresses this issue, and provides PROs
with instant access to the ever-changing technologies they
need PLUS direct access to potential clients. "There are
12-20 million fly fishers in North America alone and an
estimated 50 million+ worldwide," says Smith. "The best way
to reach this market today is online."

A professional membership in Insider Fly Fishing costs only
a little over a dollar a day, but provides valuable services
and connections to the rest of the fishing world that can't
be found anywhere else. A $49.95 monthly membership enables
PROs to highlight their expertise before a laser-targeted
audience, empowering them to:

o Build A Network Of Clients, Members And Buyers Online
Today

o Maximize Their Marketing With The Proprietary Secret
Streams Gearbox

o Get Exclusive Insider Pro Marketing Tools

o Gain Immediate Private Access To The Insider Business
Training System

o PLUS Get Multiple Top Banner Listings With
ONFLYFISHING.COM, The #1 Fly Fishing Directory On The
Internet Today

Insider Fly Fishing is an online social network, much more
than a 'Web site' because it is interactive and dynamic. "It
doesn't just remain static and sit there, as the word 'site' implies,"
explains Smith. "It constantly works for you. It makes you more
efficient, saves you money and time while it connects you up
person-to-person in the world of fly fishers and
conservationists online."

For complete information about Insider Fly Fishing PRO
membership, advertising and additional membership benefits,
please contact President Scott T. Smith at
mailto:admin@onflyfishing.com , phone 406.586.4112 or visit
the new site on the Web at

http://www.InsiderFlyFishing.com



# # #


Contact:

Scott T. Smith, President
Insider Fly Fishing and onFlyFishing, Inc.
116 Silverwood Drive
Bozeman, MT. 59715 USA

Tel: +01 406.586.4112
Email: admin@onflyfishing.com


== I ==








...

SUMMARY

PRO MEMBERS CATCH BARGAINS, WORLDWIDE CONNECTIONS AND A BIG
PIECE OF THE FLY FISHING MARKET AT INSIDERFLYFISHING.COM

BOZEMAN, MT. (December 8, 2006) - Insider Fly Fishing
http://www.InsiderFlyFishing.com


[SUMMARY]

Insider Fly Fishing is becoming known as the attractor pattern of the Internet throughout the fly fishing industry and conservation world. The newly launched site has the look, resources and can't-resist goods to turn consumers' heads and keep them coming back, while delivering exceptional results to fly fishing professionals, dealers and membership organizations throughout North America and all over the world. It's also dedicated to preserving clean water and healthy fisheries everywhere, a win for fish populations and habitat as well as for sportsmen and PROs.

Friday, November 10, 2006

 

We are 'Live'


Hello Everyone:

We've done it. Insider Fly Fishing is now up and live. We are open and ready for you to jump in and contribute - and get lots of stuff, too. Come on down and check it out. The best way is to visit here, which gives you the overview you need to hit the ground running:

For fly fishers... If we could show you a private Member's-only Web site for people who love fly fishing and support clean water fisheries worldwide, would you be interested?
http://www.insiderflyfishing.com/PRO/index.html

For PROs... There are 12-20 million fly fishers in North America alone... and an estimated 50 million+ worldwide. If we could show you how to become THE top featured Insider PRO on the #1 online network for fly fishers and conservationists today, would you be interested?
http://www.insiderflyfishing./PRO/index_PRO.html

Please let me know what you think, right here. I look forward to hearing from you,

Scott
Insider Fly Fishing
onFlyFishing

Monday, August 14, 2006

 

Men with Cancer Recover with Rods, Reels


About a year and a half ago I began the process of getting Reel Recovery to come to Montana. We finally made it happen. Here's an article all about what happened, and why it's important. I would give you the direct link, but... The Bozeman Daily Chronicle password protects it's content after 1 day, so I got permission to post it here instead.

If you would like to get in touch with Reel Recovery directly, you can reach them here:
http://www.ReelRecovery.org

Best,

Scott T. Smith
The onFlyFishing Directory
http://www.onFlyFishing.com


'Men with cancer recover with rods, reels'

By KARIN RONNOW, Bozeman Daily Chronicle Staff Writer

EMIGRANT - The fly-fishing vests look ordinary at first glance.

But the anglers who wear them quickly find that these vests connect them with other men who share a common journey.

"Look at this," said Roger McClure, handing his fishing buddy his rod and shrugging off his vest.

The vest McClure wore during the Reel Recovery retreat last week had been signed by anglers from all walks of life. All of them had cancer, and all had faced their own mortality.

"I'm wearing a piece of history," said McClure, a 67-year-old Whitehall resident who has pancreatic cancer. “All of these guys either fought the battle and won - or didn't."

McClure was standing on the banks of the Yellowstone River, where he had been fishing with Sam Pharis, a rancher who volunteered two days to Reel Recovery, a nonprofit group that organizes fly-fishing retreats for men with cancer.

The vests are a Reel Recovery staple, imbued with the strength and courage of those who wore them before.

When McClure signed up for the retreat, he was ambivalent, he said. Like many men, he was stoic about his disease, a victim of "plain old testosterone, that male hormone."

But the retreat transformed his outlook.

"Look at that river," he said, pointing to the Yellowstone. "Now look at it again. It's not the same river, is it? It's changing all the time."

He and the other men were changing, too, he said.

Most of these men had been reluctant to seek help navigating the radical changes a cancer diagnosis brings, said Stan Golub, Reel Recovery's executive director.

"A lot of men are walking through life asleep," Golub said. “But cancer can be a wake-up call if you want it to be."

Upstream around a bend, Ken Jacobs and his fishing buddy Harvey Harris, both of Bozeman, stood knee-deep in the Yellowstone.

Jacobs, 70, has lymphoma and acknowledged he was a "little clumsy and I tire easily." But the time on the river and the conversations he'd had with others at the retreat had been inspiring, he said. "There's a lot of camaraderie and in-depth understanding about what other people are going through."

Over the course of two and a half days, the men - some of them for the first time - had been able to talk about the disease, their journey and their mortality, Jacobs said.

"We have all different levels of cancer," said Jacobs, a retired teacher, coach and ranch broker. "Some are more deadly than the others. Some are more likely to come back than the others."

It sounds grim, and some of it was. But a lot of it wasn't.

"I've heard more laughter, more jokes out of this group," Jacobs said. "You'd think it would be a somber group. But everybody has a sense of humor."

GENESIS OF REEL RECOVERY

The 12 participants came from all over Montana. Their cancers ran the gamut - leukemia, brain, prostate, lung and pancreatic, all at various stages. They ranged in age from 43 to 79.

"Cancer doesn't care who you are," McClure said.

Their ability to be here together is a result of Stewart Brown, a Colorado man who had brain cancer. He was also a fly fisherman. Once, when his cancer was in remission, he and two friends, Coy Theobalt and Jim Cloud, went fishing.

The three friends started talking about how therapeutic fly fishing can be, its meditative qualities and its link to the natural world.

They also talked about how powerful it could be for men to feel comfortable talking about their lives and their fears with other men. Brown's experience had shown them why that was particularly important for men with cancer. “We have a culture that has no sacred rite of initiation into adulthood," Theobalt, a psychotherapist, said as he sat on the porch at Dome Mountain Ranch last week. “As a result, we have 50-year-old men who never transitioned to adulthood. So when a man gets cancer, it's a crisis. It's an opportunity to look at this stuff. Cancer is a great educator."

Thus, Reel Recovery was born. The trio founded a nonprofit organization, hired Golub and tested the idea. That first retreat was in Colorado, with four guys who had brain cancer, Theobalt said. It was a wild few days, but the results were better than anyone expected.

From the get-go, Theobalt was in charge of the retreats' "compassionate conversations," which he conceived as group sessions that are comfortable and nonthreatening, but honest.

"Men don't like to be caught off guard with an emotional response,” he said. “So the way I view my role is to create a place where the men feel safe enough to tell their stories. Many of these men have never told their stories to anyone. They are strong, silent, dying men."

After that first retreat, when the three were convinced the concept was sound, they began to look for money. Brown wrote to Lance Armstrong, seeking a grant from his foundation.

Armstrong wrote back within a week and then came to visit. By that time, Brown's cancer had returned. He was dying. But he was determined. At the end of a half-hour meeting "Lance turned to his foundation director and said, 'We've got to help these guys,'" Golub recalled.

That first grant was the startup money Reel Recovery needed.

"Stuart passed away a week later," Theobalt said. "But it was his dream. He left this legacy. And it's taken off from there."

This year, Reel Recovery will hold 12 retreats in 10 states - all of them free to participants.

"Anyone who's ever had cancer has a free ticket," Theobalt said.

RETREAT FUNDAMENTALS

Key to the operation are the "fishing buddies," local expert anglers who provide one-on-one instruction and guidance in the river, but who also listen.

Mark Peterson, of Bozeman, said he heard about Reel Recovery at a Trout Unlimited meeting and applied the next day to help.

“If there's something I love that much, that is that much fun and I can use to help someone else - that's very cool,” Peterson said. “People don't look at fly fishing as a means for therapy. And I don't have experience with cancer. But the conversations they've been having (with Theobalt) free them up.

“We wound up talking about almost everything,” he said.

In addition to making new friends, Golub said, the retreat participants learn fly-fishing skills and gain confidence on the river.

For Dave Espeland, 72, the retreat was not the first time he had held a fly rod.

"I was a fly fisherman before, but one with no technique," Espeland, a former Billings teacher and school administrator, said as he waded out of the Yellowstone on Thursday. "These guys have shown me how to read the water, how to present a fly - although I still haven't solved getting tangled up in the line."

Espeland, who has prostate cancer, attended the retreat at the urging of his daughter, who works at the Center for Cancer Support in Bozeman.

"She said, ‘Dad, you gotta go,'” he said. “She was right.

"Probably the most important thing I've learned is I'm not the only one who's got cancer. That, and there are deep, spiritual people here, and perhaps I need to take note of that. For us strong he-men, we aren't used to that sort of thing, really."

This was Reel Recovery's first Montana event, and Theobalt and Golub said they were thrilled with the community response - from the fly fishermen who donated hundreds of flies, to the cancer center that got the word out, to the “amazing” accommodations at Dome Mountain Ranch.

"Without much effort on our part, we had participants, volunteers, supplies and we just showed up," Golub said. "The support from the Montana fly-fishing and health-care community has been great.”

And for some of the men, particularly the six who are from the Bozeman area, it's not over.

“What will gravitate out of this is a group that gets together on a regular basis,” Jacobs said. “It's important for us to do that."

Jacobs and McClure also discovered that they own condos not far from each other on Lake Mead in Nevada.

"We've already got another fishing trip planned," Jacobs said.

Sunday, July 23, 2006

 

Reel Recovery comes to Montana, courtesy of...


I opened the door to bring Reel Recovery, the US organization for men dealing with cancer, to Montana for the 1st time this year. Here's an article that ran today about the upcoming event.

http://www.dailychronicle.com/articles/2006/07/23/breakingnews/50reel.txt

Normally we would simply like to say 'here's the link', but the Daily Chronicle Web site is password-protected most of the time, so... here it is.

And IF you are a man dealing with cancer, it's FREE to get in on this and the time is now. They are still seeking 5-6 more participants from August 8-10 at the 1st-rate Dome Mountain Ranch retreat, where you'll be treated very well indeed. The contact info you need is included here.

Reel Recovery to make stop near Emigrant to help men battling cancer

By KARIN RONNOW, Chronicle Staff Writer

Scott Smith, a 49-year-old Bozeman angler, was shocked when he learned that Reel Recovery had never held one of its fly-fishing retreats in Montana.

After all, he pointed out, "When God gets off the plane, he gets off in Bozeman to go fly fishing."


He wondered how the 3-year-old nonprofit organization, which serves men recovering from cancer, could have bypassed Montana.

So Smith, who also has cancer, called Reel Recovery and "got the wheels turning."

The result is a retreat for men battling cancer taking place at Dome Mountain Ranch near Emigrant Aug. 8-10. A few spots are still available.

"I have a vested interest in it," Smith, whose brain cancer has metastasized and spread to his bones, said. "Cancer doesn't just affect the person with the cancer. It is a swirl that takes over the whole family, everybody you know. It's this presence that moves in with you and won't let you go.

"This is a way to step aside for some personal time without it."

And it's free. The men just have to get themselves here.

RR's approach combines fly fishing with the healing powers of camaraderie and community, executive director Stan Golub said.

"For many of us, fly fishing is a very spiritual, almost mystical experience," Golub said. "The almost Zen-like quality of the cast, the rhythm, the flow, all those things together. It calms us down, focuses our attention. Life's problems flow away down the river while we concentrate on the cast and the fish.

"For these men, to be able to put away concern about their cancer for a few days is a wonderful gift. And by giving them a new skill, that also gives them hope for the future."

The fishing is key to the operation, yes, but the retreats are about more than that.

They are also about "courageous conversations" with the other participants, on topics that range from cancer to life and death or whatever else, Golub said.

"The retreat takes them out of the institutional setting where many support programs are run," Golub said.

A counselor/facilitator leads the retreat's half-dozen or so discussions.

"The men are open to talk about what they've experienced," Golub said. "We intersperse that with the fishing, so it's not all one or the other.

"But it's an opportunity to talk with others in a safe environment and also be given a two-and-a-half-day treat. We treat them like kings for that period of time. It gives them renewed strength and courage."

Each retreat includes no more than 12 men and the retreats are free to participants -- the organization pays for meals, lodging and fly-fishing equipment.

No previous fishing experience is required. The retreats cover fly-fishing basics, such as knot-tying, entomology, fly selection, casting and trout feeding and behavior patterns.

People shouldn't underestimate the power of the river, Smith said.

"People want to connect with something that is mighty and beautiful and has true meaning, something that has peace in a world that has gone increasingly haywire," he said. "It is a way to get back to the real, to connect to something that is genuine."

At this point, Reel Recovery mostly wants participants for its Emigrant retreat, but will also gratefully accept donations, Golub said. "And we'll always take flies."

Men who would like to participate should call 1-800-699-4490 as soon as possible.

For more information, visit reelrecovery.org.

This a rare opportunity, gents. Go for it.


Best,

Scott T. Smith
OnFlyFishing, Inc.
Bozeman, MT
406.586.4112

... http://www.onFlyFishing.com ...
... ___the Fly Fishing Directory ___...

Monday, July 03, 2006

 

Submit to our New Fly Fishing Articles Directory


Please send us your fly fishing articles.

We welcome your fly fishing and fly tying articles, both new and those you dust off from your archives. Together we're building a new Fly Fishing Article Directory. We're just starting up now, but you can view what we're doing here:

http://www.onflyfishing.com/onflyfishingnet/index.html

Please submit your articles to this email address in plain text format:

admin@onflyfishing.com

Thanks very much. You will get full credit and a link (of course!). We will also publish them in our main onFlyFishing Directory to give you the greatest possible exposure. We look forward to hearing from you.

Best,

Scott
onFlyFishing

Monday, June 05, 2006

 

Faaast Growth and the Rocky Mountain West, Montana-Style


The following is an article about what it really means to Montana fly fishers, and why we have to become ever more aware of what is going on around us. Even as we seek the peace a trout stream offers us.

It's a funny balance. Peace is really what we're all looking for. Peace and quiet. And the joy of connecting with a fish on its own terms, right where it lives.

But now the areas where the trout lives are being encroached upon so very fast. We are all gasping for breath.


'East Gallatin River in Center of Growth'

By Walt Williams, Bozeman Chronicle Staff Writer

6-4-06

Several times during the summer, Dale Spartas has watched the East Gallatin River turn as green as a frog pond, its waters blooming with algae.

Sometimes there's the smell, the stink of an open sewer.

Both are partly the result of the city's nearby wastewater treatment plant, which can dump 5 million gallons of treated effluent into the river each day.

Now the city is planning to more than double the capacity of its treatment plant to accommodate Bozeman's rapid growth. It's a future that Spartas, who lives next to the river on Nelson Road, doesn't look forward to.

"If this river goes in the tank, this is one of the great trout fisheries that there ever was, and it's a major water source for the whole valley," he said.

Gallatin County is rapidly growing, with one out of every 10 residents having moved here since 2000, and running through the center of that growth is the East Gallatin.

Starting near Mount Blackmore and winding west towards Three Forks, the East Gallatin and its tributaries cross four planning jurisdictions, each with a different set of rules about streamside development.

The river doesn't get as much attention as its larger and more spectacular sibling, the West Gallatin. But judged in terms of impacts on the most people, the East Gallatin is easily the more significant.

Bozeman homeowners will notice the impacts when they pay higher sewer rates to fund a bigger and cleaner sewer plant. And the course of the river through the county's urban core will shape development as Bozeman and Belgrade expand outward.

Part of the challenge will be preserving a waterway well known for its great fishing, duck hunting and wildlife habitat.

Its popularity may be part of the problem. Local environmental groups are concerned by some of the riverside development already taking place on the East Gallatin.

Scott Bosse of the Greater Yellowstone Coalition has pictures of several riverside homes, including one where the streamside vegetation was cleared away, steps were built along the bank and a discarded Christmas tree was carelessly tossed into the river.

"There are a lot of good reasons why not to allow this sort of development to occur," he said.

SEWER PLANT

The largest single source of potential pollution along the East Gallatin is Bozeman's wastewater treatment plant.

The plant currently has the capacity to process 5.8 million gallons of waste a day, plant superintendent Tom Adams said. But with all the new people it is quickly reaching that capacity, so the city plans a series of expansions over the next 15 years to expand its capacity to 13 million gallons a day.

Not all of the treated wastewater will be dumped into the river; some of it will be directed to irrigation and other uses.

The efluent that is released will be cleaned to a higher standard than it is today.

At this point, the effluent is cleaned to remove most pollutants. However, nitrogen and phosphorus -- biological nutrients that, in large concentrations, can cause algae blooms that remove oxygen from water -- are not removed.

One of the planned upgrades at the plant would those nutrients, a move mainly designed to meet tougher regulations that are expected to come down from the state.

"We are tying to assess where the state is going in its new nutrient criteria," Adams said.

The Montana Department of Environmental Quality is taking a second look at its rules, Bob Bukantis, program manager for the agency's Water Quality Standards Division, said.

This summer, DEQ is polling river users, showing them pictures of rivers with various levels of algae growth and asking them at what level the algae would affect their recreational enjoyment.

"It basically comes down to a question of how green is too green," Bukantis said.

The agency hasn't studied nutrient levels in the East Gallatin, but the conservation group Montana River Action commissioned a study that found phosphorus levels higher than existing state standards.

It also found high levels of coliform bacteria colonies, although the DEQ only regulates bacteria levels in groundwater, not surface water.

MRA has requested the city hold a public hearing on the issue, according to president Joe Gutkoski. The group wants to discuss how the county as a whole, not just Bozeman, will tackle wastewater treatment in the future.

The wastewater treatment plant isn't the only source of pollution on the river. Another source is runoff from farms, golf courses and lawns. But as "non-point source" pollution, the runoff isn't regulated by the state.

"The treatment plants of the state get singled out as the major source of the problem when in reality they are only a fraction of the problem," Adams said.

RIVERSIDE HOMES

Some of the hottest real-estate around Bozeman and Belgrade is near the East Gallatin, with high-priced homes quickly popping up along its banks.

So far they are few in number, but according to Bosse of the Greater Yellowstone Coalition, they appear to fall in a pattern: Streamside vegetation is cleared for a better view of the river; structures are erected on the banks; and homes are built well within the floodplain.

GYC is preparing a guidebook developers can use when working on riverside projects, spelling out the specific local, state and federal regulations that apply along the East Gallatin.

Gallatin County, for example, requires a 300-foot setback from the high water line for subdivisions but not for individual lots.

Bozeman requires a 100-foot setback for subdivisions. Belgrade also requires a 100-foot setback and Manhattan requires a 15-foot setback.

There have been calls at a statewide level for some uniformity to setback requirements, although Byron Roberts of the Montana Building Industry Association isn't convinced the idea is sound.

The problem with uniform setbacks is they don't address the individual reasons why a stream or section of a stream needs protection, he said. Such regulations should be based on empirical data.

"You have to look at the reason why you originally created the setback requirements," Roberts said.

Zoning is another tool that could be used to limit riverside development.

The proposed East Gallatin Zoning District would limit the number of homes that could be built around the stretch of river between Bozeman and Belgrade, if it is ultimately adopted by the county commission.

The draft district regulation sets a minimum density of one home per 20 acres, although densities up to one home per five acres would be allowed as a conditional use.

The low densities were chosen by the landowners there as the development pattern that best fits area's rural character, Joe Sabatini, one of the leaders of the effort, said.

"They just want to protect the river and its corridor," he said.

Spartas wants the river protected, too, and for him the issue is personal. He watched the river he grew up on, the Rippowam River in Connecticut, change from a healthy stream into what he said is now a "biological desert."

"I don't want to see a replay of that here," he said. "We got people moving here in droves. We can make the right choice."

...

Yes we can.



Copyright 2006 onFlyFishing.com. All Rights Worldwide Reserved.