St. Louis Creek Project

Project Date: 2009


Partners: Trout Unlimited


Involvement: Funding assistance


Mining reclamation project.

St Louis Creek is located approximately 20 miles up Ninemile Creek from the Clark Fork River.  The mine site was operated in the 1950s and resulted in significant environmental effects.  Overflow from a mining settling pond discharged directly to St. Louis Creek through a PVC and middle portions of the mine waste-rock dumps were being actively eroded by St. Louis Creek.  Soil sampling at the site showed elevated levels of lead, arsenic, copper and zinc with arsenic and copper leaching into the stream.  The site was ranked on Montana’s Priority Mine Site cleanup list. 

The project involved removal and containment of 30,000 cubic yards of mine waste rock,  reconstruction of 2,000 feet of stream channel, removal of 1 culvert barrier, and decommissioning of 2 miles of roads.  The project cost approximately $550,000 and took 4 years from site investigation to completion.  The project is located on the Lolo National Forest and other major partners included Missoula County and the Montana Department of Natural Resources.


Photos:                 Stream channel – before, during construction and after

                             Mine site – before and after