A Longer Bigfork Bike Route

By Beacon Staff

Donations of money and land to use has taken Bigfork steps forward toward a several mile goal. Bigfork’s Rotary Club plans to get to work on a 2.75 mile addition to the Swan River Road bike path this spring.

Property owners William and Debra Doney, the late Jack and Ruth White and Sherry O’Hearn donated easements along their property lines.

“I’ve always believed that if everyone just does a little bit it makes a much more cohesive and friendly village,” says O’Hearn. Flathead County gave permission for construction within the 60-foot right-of-way where easements will not be donated.

The Bigfork Rotary says it has raised nearly $10,000, including a $4,000 grant from Plum Creek, and a $4,000 pledge from Flathead Electric Co-op’s Roundup for Safety. Additional funds will get raised at a May 29 auction hosted by Flathead Living.

Bigfork Rotary members and friends will donate much of the labor, and Sands Surveying has committed to survey the area free of charge.

“This is the largest local service project that the Rotary Club of Bigfork has ever undertaken,” says club president Ed Nolde. The ultimate goal is to connect Echo Lake Road and the Swan River Road to the Swan River Nature Trail; enabling people to bike into downtown. But Nolde says they’re not even looking at additions to the Echo Lake Road side of the path yet.

“Right now this is enough to keep us busy,” Nolde says.

Donations and grants received for the project will determine the speed it gets done. The Club will need fill dirt this spring, and will continue to need donations of money and easements. For more information, contact Ed Nolde at 837-4383 or www.montanarotary.org.

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