BIG SKY COMMUNITY CORP.

BIG SKY – The Big Sky Community Corp. in July received a $25,000 Recreational Trails Program grant for new area trails.

Montana State Parks collaborates with the State Trails Advisory Committee to review all RTP applicants and this year awarded $1.65 million to 58 recipients. BSCC used its share of the RTP grant to help fund Phase 1 of a new trails system accessible from Town Center. This first of four phases included the trail and trailhead as well as a six-car parking area.

The new trails – called Hummocks and Uplands – comprise five miles of varying terrain for biking and hiking, and will eventually connect to the Ousel Falls Trail. The completion of Phase 1 signifies a large step toward increasing trail mileage and connectivity for the Big Sky community.

Grant money for RTP grants, which support trails in Montana, comes from the Federal Highway Trust Fund, representing a portion of the motor fuel excise tax collected from non-highway recreational fuel use including snowmobiles and ATVs.

Applicants for the grant can include federal, tribal, state, county or city agencies, private associations, and clubs conducting eligible projects such as urban trail development, basic front- and backcountry trail maintenance, restoration of areas damaged by trail use, development of trailside facilities, and trail-related educational and safety projects.

The Big Sky Community Corporation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit entity created in 1998 to promote, acquire, preserve and maintain land, parks, trails and easements for the use of the people of the Big Sky community and the general public.

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BSCC is holding a ribbon-cutting event for the new Hummocks and Uplands trails on Aug. 12 at the shared trailhead, located on Aspen Leaf Drive approximately 0.7 miles east of Town Center from 5-7 p.m. Celebrate the new trails with guided tours, food and drink.