If you’d rather see sunshine, wildflowers and green grass on your hikes than trek through the snow, you already know that mid-late summer is the best time to hit the trails in Montana. And while you’ll have hundreds and hundreds of spots to choose from, there are a few hikes that stand out among the rest during this warm, sunny season. The next time you decide to take a hike, find one of these beautiful trails.
1. Palisade Falls
There's nothing quite like a cool waterfall hike on a hot day. This is a nice, easy, mile-long paved trail that leads to this totally tranquil scene.
2. Canyon Creek Trail
Located near Hamilton, the 8-mile Canyon Creek Trail takes you through stunning scenery that eventually ends at a beautiful lake. The trailhead is well-marked and easy to find.
3. Hidden Lake Trail
Going to Glacier National Park this summer? Don't miss the Hidden Lake Trail, 1 5.4-mile journey full of alpine meadows, stunning views, and a gorgeous lake. The trail begins on the west side of the Logan Pass Visitor Center, going from a paved surface to a small boardwalk.
4. Lemonknob Loop
You'll find this moderately trafficked 3.5-mile loop near Big Sky, and it's a perfect hike for those who love summer wildflowers. The incline is slow and steady, so although the trek is a bit challenging, it's a great hike for beginners.
5. Crystal Lake Trail
Located near St. Regis in Lolo National Forest, the 3-mile Crystal Lake Trail is nice and inviting on a warm summer day. The path tends to remain uncrowded, so if you go in the morning, you might be the only one on the trail.
6. Drinking Horse Mountain Trail
The Drinking Horse Mountain Trail, which is located near Bozeman, is just over 2 miles in length. That being said, you should allow a few hours to complete it, because it's extremely steep in parts. The views of the Gallatin Valley and Bridger Canyon are worth it.
7. Birch Lake Trail
Kalispell's Birch Lake Trail is a 7-mile trek that offers sweeping views of the Flathead Valley. On a clear day, you can catch views of the Bob Marshall, Swan, Mission, and Salish Mountains.
8. Phipps Park Trail
If you're looking for a nice, easy hike near Billings, it doesn't get much better than the 2.5-mile Phipps Park trail. The scenic loop gets pretty steep in parts, but it's not too treacherous for any skill level.
9. Morrell Falls National Recreation Area
If you're spending time at Seeley Lake this summer, you'll definitely want to check out the nearby Morrell Falls trail. It's about 7 miles in length, moderately challenging, and it has a breathtaking visual reward.
Summertime is perfect for enjoying a nice nature hike. And if you’ll have little ones with you,
check out this list of short kid-friendly trails.
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