Dear Friends of East Rosebud,

 

More than 200 of you attended the East Rosebud Film Festival at the Branger Ranch in Roscoe, Montana. It was a typical Montana event with traditional chili, country music, and the mandatory afternoon thunder shower. Local landowners mixed with tourists. Ranchers talked to Forest Service representatives. Conservation groups discussed with local business owners. They all had come together to learn about the potential to designate East Rosebud Creek Wild and Scenic. And they all had come together to help make it happen. Friends of East Rosebud had invited to this event and the Branger family kindly hosted it on their ranch right by East Rosebud Creek. Their historic 1900 barn was set up to show short films promoting Wild & Scenic River designation and the beauty of the Beartooth mountains. If you couldn’t make it to the East Rosebud Film Festival; here are the films:

 

Wild and Scenic
by Daniel Lombardi and Joel Harris
sponsored by Patagonia
http://vimeo.com/61809860

East Rosebud Episode 1 featuring Clint Branger
by Daniel Schmidt
sponsored Montana Rivers Coalition
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3RwRYyhZP90

 

East Rosebud Episode 2 featuring Mary Ellen Mangus
by Daniel Schmidt
sponsored Montana Rivers Coalition
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h3OyA843bnM

Brandi Roman, Granite Peak Ascent
sponsored by Summit for Parkinson's
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R7mIrJliifo

Greater Yellowstone Wildlife
"Best of Show at International Wildlife Film Festival in Missoula"
by Scott McKinley
sponsored by Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation
http://www.youtube.com/watch_popup?v=BUOQ_yPW_0s

 

After the first showing of films and a good bowl of chili made after Sybil Branger’s old family recipe everybody listened to a couple of short speeches.

 

Dave Branger told us about the 5 generations of Brangers that wrote history in the East Rosebud drainage from building the lodge at East Rosebud Lake, discovering the Arch above Arch Lakes, stocking mountain lakes with trout to building the historic Beaten Path Trail to Cooke City. And during all this time the Brangers have been active ranchers and outfitters that happily shared the beauty of the Beartooth mountains and rivers with guests from near and far.

 

Gary Ferguson, famous author of wildlife, conservation and history  books, reminded us of the spirit of the old West that is still alive in Montana. He explained that conservation is not a modern trend of an intellectual elite but a basic building block of the American Dream – a means by which we came to forge our very sense of identity. When novelist Lawrence Durrell suggested that Americans are “children of the landscape,” he was referring in part to the fact that our earliest notions of democracy were expressed in notions of unfettered land, which as far back as the 1700’s was often referred to as “the great equalizer.” Little wonder, then, that the earliest symbols of patriotism, were images of wild nature.

 

Frank Annighofer informed that the permit for the hydro dam proposal had expired on June 30th. Hydrodynamics’ spokesman had said that the expected guaranteed sales rates for hydropower generated electricity did not materialize and that they therefore did not pursue their permit at this point in time. Frank explained that a new hydro proposal can pop up any time and that Friends of East Rosebud are continuing their push for Wild and Scenic designation for East Rosebud Creek. He informed about their recent discussions with the MT Congressional Delegation and Forest Service headquarters in Washington DC that give hope that the goal of Wild and Scenic designation can be reached.

 

Scott Bosse and Mike Fiebig of American Rivers introduced the Montana Rivers Coalition that besides themselves includes American Whitewater, the Greater Yellowstone Coalition and the Clarks Fork Coalition. All together they are pushing for getting some or all of the 0.6% of Montana’s eligible rivers designated Wild and Scenic, starting with East Rosebud Creek. They explained that many other states have been adding rivers to the Wild and Scenic inventory over the past years including WY, ID, WA, OR, but not Montana.

 

The following Question and Answer part of the meeting gave an opportunity to explain that Wild and Scenic legislation does not change any prior land owner or water rights. Overall changes are actually very minor since US Forest Service already  manages East Rosebud Creek as if it would be Wild and Scenic.

 

A big thank you to all that helped organizing this film festival. And a big thank you to all our sponsors and supporters.

 

Frank