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Smith River levels halt rafters

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Town Crier “Briefs from the Region” (2) – 6/23/21

Every summer, a handful of lucky floaters will pull a permit to float the Smith River in Meagher County, Montana. This year however, Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks say the river is running too low for any kind of watercraft. With how quickly the low snowpack melted this summer, low water is a concerning and ongoing trend in the state. Unusually during this time of year, the Smith flows at about 500 cubic feet per second, but right now the river’s flow has dwindled to 116 CFS. Rafts require at least 250 CFS. FWP has also closed the Ruby River because the water at the dam was so low last week and the agency is also concerned about the decrease of brown trout in these tributaries.

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