Our Beginning

The Great Burn Study Group was founded in 1971 by a group of university students who fell in love with a place. Their summer project was documenting the resources, plants and animals of a little-known wild area called the Great Burn in the northern Rocky Mountains on the border of Montana and Idaho.

Out of this summer project, the Great Burn received the highest possible rating for inclusion in the national wilderness preservation system. A generation of wilderness advocates was born. And an organization took root with a continuing focus on education, advocacy, and building community around shared love of place.

As a 501(c)3 nonprofit, GBSG has achieved a remarkable list of successes protecting a single landscape with a lean, effective organization. 

Learn more about GBSG's achievements