American Prairie Reserve is pleased to announce the purchase of 800 acres near Cow Creek, located in Blaine County and within the Upper Missouri River Breaks National Monument. This parcel is American Prairie’s 32nd land acquisition and brings the conservation organization’s total deeded and leased acres to 420,425.
Named for Cow Creek, which runs its length, the property lies just four miles north of the Missouri River. It is adjacent to existing American Prairie land and the secluded, rugged location inside the National Monument offers plentiful grazing for wildlife and attracts elk, deer, and big horn sheep.
“Properties like Cow Creek connect existing public lands and provide crucial habitat, helping us to create a contiguous landscape where wildlife can thrive,” said Alison Fox, CEO of American Prairie Reserve.
The parcel is three miles long, half a mile wide, and falls within the Cow Creek Area of Critical Environmental Concern and the Cow Creek Wilderness Study Area. Both are managed by the Bureau of Land Management for the areas’ important historical and cultural values in addition to providing critical fish and wildlife habitat and opportunities for recreation.
This new property also holds historical significance. The Nez Perce tribe crossed this region during the Flight of 1877 and followed Cow Creek as they fled the U.S. Army in an attempt to reach Canada. The segment of the trail the Nez Perce followed, which was also used by local Indigenous People for generations before and after this historic journey, runs the length of the Cow Creek property.
“This acquisition is an excellent example of our model at work,” said Fox. “It is part of American Prairie’s mission to grow contiguous habitat areas and Cow Creek represents a key step towards that goal.”