Some thoughts on the Madison River controversy. I went on to the FWP website and learned that a Montana resident hunting license to shoot an elk is $20 (with exceptions), a non-resident will pay $905 (with exceptions) this being for a season that lasts 35 days.

Also, a Montana resident fishing license is $31 (with exceptions), a non-resident fishing license is $111 this being for a season that lasts 365 days. Now I have not seen any numbers breaking down this 200,000 plus fisherman days on the river, but how many are out of state fishermen and women because anecdotally I would be willing to bet half are non-residents.

That being said, it seems to me that FWP should consider raising the price for a non-resident, full-season fishing license to something a little bit more on a par with the elk hunters and I would go so far as to limit that season to say for example April 1 to Nov. 1. With single day and multi day/week licenses out-of-staters will be able to fish the whole year it’s just that now they may be choosier about when they fish hopefully reducing the number of days that they actually fish.

After all, you are trying to reduce the number of fishermen/women on the river aren't you? In any case, we have learned from the Chronicle that over 3,000 people a year are moving to the Gallatin Valley and that recreational tourism will only continue to grow, I'm not proposing this as a do all to end all, however, when combined with proposed outfitter/guide regulations, hoot owl restrictions and no doubt other good ideas FWP can make the Madison river the blue-ribbon river that it is for decades to come.

Bruce Lange