Gardening with Native Plants Workshop

Don’t forget about the Gardening with Native Plants Workshop at Sondreson Hall led by Terry Divoky; native plants will be available for sale.  She will be joined by Andrew Beltz. This will take place on Tuesday, June 24th starting  at 10AM at Sondreson Hall.

Both Terry and Andrew will be bringing plants to the workshop to sell.   Want to preorder so that you can get just the plants you want?  Open this preorder list, make your selections, then email Andrew at

Forest Reminds Users of Changing Spring Conditions

Flathead National Forest managers remind all Forest users to be prepared for changing conditions and be aware of possible hazards. Water levels remain very high and all visitors are asked to be very cautious and properly evaluate if conditions are safe enough to allow for foot or stock crossings. As crews work to clear trails they are encountering small wash-outs and some large avalanche debris areas. If anyone encounters damaged trail tread or other conditions please report it to the respective ranger district. You may encounter road work including blading, brushing and ditch cleaning. Work areas will be clearly signed and motorists are asked to use caution. All forest users should expect the unexpected. Continue reading Forest Reminds Users of Changing Spring Conditions

NFLA BoD recommendation on the organization’s name change

The NFLA BoD has written a position paper that includes some background and a recommendation on whether or not to change the NFLA’s name back to NFIA.

The BoD asks that everyone review and talk about this document (see the link below) with your neighbors over the summer. General discussion time will be on the agenda for the July and August meetings when members will decide what action to take.

Our thanks to the BoD for taking time for careful consideration of this controversial topic and writing such a well thought out response.  We all appreciate the hard work that this represents.

The complete document may be viewed by clicking  NFLA Name Change – BOD Position Paper 6.3.2014.  For those who have internet access and a printer, please make copies available for your neighbors.

NFLA Holds June Meeting Outdoors

On Saturday night, the North Fork Landowners Association held its first meeting of the season outside due to the refinishing of the Hall floor a few days prior to the meeting. In order to protect the newly re-finished floors, several board members walked across the new floor in their socks and handed out the chairs. Although President Karen McDonough predicted a small turnout, this was not the case and more and more chairs had to be hauled outside as people kept arriving. The meeting proceeded as planned, but it would have been better if a few less mosquitoes had not also attended the meeting.  These photos were provided by Suzanne Daniel.

The Mystery of the Table Knife

During the recently completed Hazardous Fuels Project at Sondreson Community Hall, a very curious item was found.  A table knife was found stuck into a spruce tree near the southwest corner of the NFLA property.  The knife is an old style of tableware, and has obviously been in the tree for decades due to the tree growth over the blade.  It was stuck about six feet above the ground.

Great speculation was revolved around who stuck the knife in the tree, and when did they do it?  The knife could easily have been stuck into the tree some 50 years ago.  Very curious!

The knife is still in place – please feel free to examine it – and share any information you might have on the mystery surrounding it.  But please leave it in place for others to wonder over!

Sondreson Community Hall Hazardous Fuels Project Completed

Work completedWork was completed on the Sondreson Community Hall Fuels Project in Phase 2 on May 30th and 31st.  The intent of the project was to remove surface fuels, ladder fuels, and provide space between the crowns of the remaining trees to reduce the fire hazard.   Phase 1 was completed on May 16 and 17 with the removal of the smaller diameter material as green firewood and posts.

The workday scheduled for June 21st is not needed and is CANCELLED.

The NFLA would like to thank all the Volunteers who participated, and especially Duke Hoiland for his professional falling skills and the donated use of his ATV for skidding, and Richard Hildner for the donated use of his tractor for skidding.

With the completion of the project, the North Fork Landowner’s Association will receive a grant of just over $300. Contact Allen Chrisman with questions about the project or advice on your own fuels project at 406-249-6130 or

For a full report of the completed project including pictures, see Sondreson Hall Hazardous Fuels Project Completed 6.1.2014.

Refinishing the Hall floors

Sondreson Hall will be getting a floor facelift this summer.  The main area will have the wood floors refinished from June 2nd through June 5th.  The kitchen and wood stove areas are going to get brand new tile to make them even more fireproof and easier to clean.  This work takes place between July 7th and 10th.  A special community auction was held last year to raise the money to pay for these improvements to the hall.  So thanks to everyone who donated their time and cash to make this needed upgrade possible.  You can check out the calendar for information about these dates.  Now let the square dancing begin.

2014 NFLA Hall Cleanup Day

The Sondreson Community Hall was buzzing with activity on Saturday morning for the annual Hall Cleanup Day.  Members of the North Fork Landowners Association had a fun time together and accomplished a lot in a short period of time.  Vice President Donna Harrison was in charge of the event and started things off with a list of things that needed to be completed.  Margaret Heaphy and Suzanne Daniel cleaned the outhouses while Bill Walker split kindling.  Richard Hildner and Randy Kenyon hauled kindling into the Hall while Jackie Graham dusted the rafters with Karen McDonough holding the ladder.  Alice Caldwell, Becky Braunig, Naomi Hoiland swept and mopped the inside of the Hall while Jan Caldwell cleaned the windows.  Debo Powers cleaned the generator shed while Bonny Ogle went after old wasp nests in all of the outbuildings.  Lynn Ogle helped to move tables.

An executive decision was made by President Karen McDonough to get rid of the old green plastic sofa and enthusiastic workers carried it out to the road hoping that someone will “steal” it.  Lunch followed with chili dogs provided by Donna and side dishes from other participants which included Naomi’s famous sticky buns.  After lunch, all of the furniture was moved into the kitchen to prepare the Hall for floor refinishing which is scheduled for the first few days in June.  The cleanup day was a demonstration of community spirit and cooperation and was greatly enjoyed by all participants.

Sondreson Community Hall Hazardous Fuels Project Update 5.19.2014

IMG_3132Allen Chrisman sent in an update for the Hazardous Fuels Project that is taking place at Sondreson Hall this month.  It begins…

Work started Friday May 16th on the Sondreson Community Hall Hazardous Fuels Project. Duke Hoiland and Allen Chrisman spent the day falling the smaller trees, cutting it into lengths for post material and green firewood, and piling some of the slash, getting ready for the general workday on Saturday, May 17. The intent of the project is to remove surface fuels, ladder fuels, and provide space between the crowns of the remaining trees to reduce the fire hazard.

Read the full report with all the pictures here.