The Pacific Northwest Region's area of operation in Montana is the upper Columbia River System and includes the Clark Fork, Flathead, and Bitterroot rivers. Reclamation's involvement in Montana began in 1930 with the Bitter Root Project. Since then, four projects have been constructed under the direction of the Pacific Northwest Region. Three of these are operated and maintained by the farmers and water users.
Although Montana has vast water resources in terms of rivers and streams, the average annual precipitation varies from only 13 inches in the east to 18 inches in the west. For this reason Montana farmers have always depended on irrigation for agricultural success.
With the creation of the Reclamation Service in 1902, Montana began to benefit from such irrigation projects as the Lower Yellowstone Project, Milk River Project, and Sun River Project. These efforts brought valuable water and life to Montana's crops.
As the West grew there came a need for multipurpose projects, such as the Hungry Horse Project, that provided hydropower, recreation, and flood control benefits in addition to irrigation. Reclamation also constructed irrigation projects on several Montana Indian Reservations that are managed by the Bureau of Indian Affairs.
Throughout the state's history Reclamation's projects have provided the foundation for the settlement, development, and economic well-being of Montana.
|Bitter Root Project||Como Dam|
|Hungry Horse Project||Hungry Horse Dam||Hungry Horse Powerplant|
(509) 575-5848 ext. 200
Columbia-Cascades Area Office
1917 Marsh Road
Yakima, Washington 98901-2058
Grand Coulee Power Office
PO Box 620
Grand Coulee, WA 99133-0620
(406) 387-5241 ext. 313
Hungry Horse Field Office
PO Box 59919-0130
Hungry Horse, MT 59919-0130
Hungry Horse Dam
Montana Projects and Facilities
Hungry Horse Reservoir Storage
VARQ and Upper Columbia Alternative Flood Control EIS
Bureau of Indian Affairs
For information on Montana east of the Continental Divide visit https://www.usbr.gov/gp/.