Veterans, volunteers salvage fish in Ninemile Creek | Local News

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On a smoke-filled morning Thursday, a group of people meandered through Ninemile Creek electroshocking, netting and transporting trout.

About 20 volunteers and veterans from Warriors and Quiet Waters, Trout Unlimited and the Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife & Parks were working on a restoration project to protect the fish by moving them downriver before the creek bed is reconstructed.

Crews with Trout Unlimited as well as Warriors and Quiet Waters are working on restoring a portion of Ninemile Creek while clearing waste left over from mining. Music by Travis Yost (www.themightytravis.com)


Warriors and Quiet Waters is an organization dedicated to promoting healing and resilience through therapeutic outdoor activities for post-9/11 combat veterans.

After spending a few days fishing on another part of the creek, the veterans are able to give back to the river by helping with restoration efforts, said Jesse LeNeve, fishing operations manager for Warriors and Quiet Waters. 

He’s done 12 seasons of restoration work.

“It’s about giving veterans an opportunity for healing through fishing,” he added. “Veterans always give back to what they use. The amount of passion from people willing to work together is one of my favorite parts of this project.”

The creek, located about an hour northwest of Missoula, was home to placer mining in the 19th and 20th centuries. Miners would dig about 30 feet deep to drag out coal, creating strains on the creek flow and a buildup of materials removed to access the minerals, said Paul Parson, Trout Unlimited Clark Fork restoration coordinator. 



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