Bud’s Place Film Screenings

Few Montanans have parlayed an eighth-grade education at a one-room school and backwoods skills into leadership positions in the U.S. Forest Service and the nation’s conservation movement as the late Bud Moore did.

The movie, “Bud’s Place,” by George Sibley will premiere at 7 p.m. Wednesday, March 15, in the third floor theater of the University Center on the University of Montana campus. Admission is free. Bud’s son, Bill, will introduce the film.

A second free showing will be at 7 p.m. March 17 in the Seeley Lake Community Hall.

As a young man graduating from Lolo’s Woodman School during the depression, Bud skied over the hill to the Lochsa country, towing a sled with trapping supplies. Before long, Bud’s skills as a woodsman found him working for the U.S. Forest Service.

Eventually, Bud became the Clearwater National Forest’s Powell District Ranger, the deputy director of the Forest Service’s fire and aviation program in Washington, D.C., and the director of fire and aviation management for the Forest Service’s Northern Region in Missoula, Mont. Bud approved the first fire that was managed rather than being put out as soon as possible in national forest wilderness, perhaps his most significant act of conservation leadership.

After retirement, Bud moved to the Swan Valley where he bought 80 acres of grizzly habitat that became “Coyote Forest,” the very first conservation easement both negotiated and held by Vital Ground.

There Bud ran a small sawmill during the summer and resumed trapping in the Bob Marshall Wilderness during the winter. Bud not only protected Coyote Forest with a conservation easement, but his example encouraged several of his neighbors to do so as well.

Documentary filmmaker George Sibley spent the past year producing “Bud’s Place,” which is available on DVD. The Missoula premiere is being sponsored by The Wilderness Institute, Vital Ground, the Montana Wilderness Association, and the Society of American Foresters.