I am concerned about the unofficial shooting range at Priest Pass. Priest Pass is a popular trailhead for runners and hikers on the Continental Divide Trail northwest of Helena. Just east of Priest Pass is a turnoff on the north side of the road that leads to an unofficial shooting range on the Helena-Lewis and Clark National Forest.
Three different times I have been hiking there when people were shooting across the CDT. Last spring my family and I were hiking there when bullets started landing in the dirt near us. One hit less than two feet from me and I could hear it thud into the ground. As we fled back to our vehicle, we had several other rounds go over our heads close enough that we could hear them. I have contacted both the Lewis & Clark County Sheriff’s Office and the Forest Service, but the issue persists.
I have no problem with guns or responsible shooting. However, what is happening at Priest Pass is not responsible. It is just dangerous. The sheriff’s department and/or Forest Service need to do something before someone is injured or killed.