Blair Miller

Blair Miller

Blair Miller is a reporter based in Helena who primarily covers government, climate and courts. He's been a journalist for more than 12 years, previously based in Denver, Albuquerque and mid-Missouri.

Fire bans go into effect Saturday in northwest Montana

By: - July 27, 2023

Stage 1 fire restrictions will go into effect just after midnight Saturday morning in northwest Montana, which prohibit any type of campfire or other burning outdoors save for the use of liquid fuel or propane stoves that can be turned on and off. “The intent of fire restrictions is to reduce fire risk and prevent […]

Fishing closed on parts of Clark Fork, Madison rivers; more afternoon restrictions added elsewhere

By: - July 26, 2023

The first full fishing closures of the year in Montana went into effect Wednesday on stretches of the Madison River and the Clark Fork River because of warming waters, while additional afternoon and evening restrictions were added on portions of other popular rivers for anglers. Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks issued the full fishing closures […]

Culex species mosquitoes spread West Nile virus.

First West Nile virus of 2023 in Montana identified in Blaine County mosquitoes

By: - July 24, 2023

Officials reported the first detection of West Nile virus in Montana this year in mosquitoes from Blaine County on Monday, though no human or equine cases have been confirmed. The Department of Public Health and Human Services sent warning of the virus in the Montana mosquitoes as the state hits its hottest days of the […]

Judge approves $9M settlement for Blackfeet telecomms customers who alleged discrimination

By: - July 24, 2023

A federal judge has approved a $9 million class action settlement involving a nonprofit telecommunications co-op that will pay back millions in capital credits to several hundred tribal members of the former Browning Exchange who alleged discrimination when the company withheld the credits after a 2020 sale. The final approval of the settlement on July […]

Woman killed in grizzly bear attack near West Yellowstone

By: - July 24, 2023

The Custer Gallatin National Forest closed the Buttermilk area west of West Yellowstone during the weekend after a woman hiking alone there was killed by what wildlife officials believe was an adult grizzly bear. The woman was found dead around 8 a.m., Saturday on the Buttermilk Trail, approximately eight miles west of West Yellowstone, according […]

Evacuations ordered north of Seeley Lake as Colt Fire spreads

By: - July 21, 2023

People living near Rainy and Summit lakes north of Seeley Lake were ordered to evacuate Friday afternoon because of the spread of the Colt Fire burning in the area since earlier this week. The Missoula County Sheriff’s Office issued the evacuation order at 4 p.m. Friday for people living along Highway 83 between mile markers […]

A cutthroat trout caught on a western Montana river.

FWP warns of possible fishing closures in NW Montana; restrictions added on Big Hole, Ruby rivers

By: - July 21, 2023

Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks issued a warning Friday about historically low flows on the Flathead River that could potentially lead to full fishing closures there, while the department added new restrictions on the Big Hole and Ruby rivers as well ahead of the hottest week in Montana so far this year. FWP told anglers […]

FWP euthanizes ‘food-conditioned’ grizzly near Hungry Horse that damaged boats

By: - July 20, 2023

Wildlife officers captured and euthanized a grizzly bear earlier this week near Hungry Horse Reservoir that Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks said had become food conditioned and habituated to humans. FWP spokesperson Dillon Tabish said the department’s staff captured the subadult male grizzly on Monday after it damaged boats beached onshore and repeatedly approached people […]

A fisherman briefly shows off a cutthroat trout caught in Montana in early July before it was released.

Fishing restrictions implemented on Jefferson River, portions of Beaverhead and Bitterroot rivers

By: - July 19, 2023

More hoot-owl fishing restrictions were put in place by Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks on Wednesday – this time on some of the state’s most popular trout fisheries which the department is already studying due to declining trout populations and warming waters. The new restrictions, which ban all fishing from 2 p.m. to midnight, went […]

Investigation finds preparation, storage of morel mushrooms likely cause of illnesses at Dave’s Sushi

By: - July 19, 2023

An investigation into what killed two people and left more than 50 others sick who ate at Dave’s Sushi in Bozeman earlier this year found morel mushrooms, and possibly their storage and preparation, were the likely causes of the illnesses, according to a report released Wednesday. The Montana Department of Health and Human Services and […]

Three powerful groups join Montana Attorney General in opposing property tax ballot proposal

By: - July 18, 2023

Coalitions of powerful Montana organizations representing public employees, local governments and business interests are joining Montana Attorney General Austin Knudsen in arguing that a proposal to limit property taxes violates the constitution and would have sweeping negative financial effects. The attorney behind the constitutional amendment ballot measure, Bozeman-based Matthew Monforton, argues that Knudsen’s office in […]

Northern Rockies Predictive Services Fire Weather Meteorologist Dan Borsum outlines the fire outlook for the rest of the 2023 season at a meeting with the governor and DNRC members on July 18, 2023.

Montana fire outlook: ‘Be prepared for big change’

By: - July 18, 2023

A fire weather meteorologist told Gov. Greg Gianforte and other state agency officials Tuesday that Montana should prepare for a shift to a warmer and drier back half of the summer and expect wildfires beginning in drought-stricken northwestern Montana and moving further south and east as the state dries out into the fall. The El […]