The KFSC Common Ground Wilderness and Recreation Agreement

The KFSC has worked to find common ground on some recommendations for management of the Roadless Areas of the Kootenai Forest, to provide more benefits for the public. After many years of work we formed an agreement, based on broad consensus, that provides more permanent access for motorized users, and more acres of wilderness.

The process of working together and finding agreement on this issue represents a remarkable achievement. It demonstrates that we can find wide agreement when we commit to seeking solutions, based on tolerance and respect for diverse points of view.


The KFSC Common Ground Committee met monthly for over seven years to work on the recommendations shown on the maps. The committee’s work was based on extensive research, consultation, on-the-ground experience, and focused discussions. Timber industry representatives have been a key part of this effort, and they had the ability to veto areas they considered not appropriate for wilderness. We have sought additional input from a variety of other people and groups.

The ongoing work of the KFSC is to represent our community in supporting forest projects focused on timber production, wildfire risk reduction, plus improvements to wildlife habitat and recreation opportunities. Good for our forests, our economy, and our community. We work together with the USFS and other groups and agencies to accomplish this part of our mission. In contrast, the Common Ground Wilderness and Recreation agreement would require action by Congress to implement.

The KFSC was founded in 2006. An important part of our group’s mission is to identify and protect some premier existing wild country in the Kootenai National Forest, as well as enhancing opportunities for both motorized and quiet recreation.

Our collaborative represents a diverse group of forest users, hunters, hikers, timber industry representatives, conservationists, business owners, motorized recreationists, elected officials and citizens at large. We believe that the abundant public lands that surround our communities provide room for a variety of uses.

The list of supporters for the KFSC includes agencies and organizations representing:  Recreation, Sportsman and Angling, Wood Products and Forestry, Elected Officials, Conservation, Education, Economic Development, Local Businesses, and Tourism.

We welcome comments and suggestions from the community on this Common Ground proposal, as we work to refine the proposal and prepare it for consideration by Congress.