Explore Montana Trip Oct. - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

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birding
3 months ago

hiking
5 months ago

I would rate this hike as more difficult than moderate, which is due the path being very narrow in a lot of places and a heavy amount of rocks on the trail. However, the scenery more than made up for the difficulty level!

I wasn't able to get to Phantom Lake (1000yds short) due to deep snow.

Fairly long hike if going straight to the falls in one go, but shouldn't be too bad as long as you're not carrying too much weight. The meadows section was very muddy, and is a guarantee to get your feet and legs wet if you don't have a good pair of boots. Waterfall at the end is pretty incredible.

backpacking
6 months ago

Lake is frozen over as of 10/15/17. Drive up wasn't bad but there are no signs until the top and might need 4wd in certain spots.

backpacking
6 months ago

Lake is frozen over as of 10/15/17. Road up to lake is nice however you need 4wd in some spots and there are no signs until you're right at the spot to park at the top of the mountain.

Challenging hike, it lives up the rating of hard but had some spectacular falls at the end. Road to the ranger station is bumpy so cars with low clearance be aware. Waited 45 minutes for a ranger to show up, ended up being in his rv next door. Spent an hour in the station doing paperwork and watching a safety video. Finally got on the trail with about 2 hours of sunlight left (don't recommend doing if you dont want to hike through the night). First section of the trail is about 4 miles and goes though woods with a mixture of uphill and downhill, a majority being downhill). Then reached a small bridge that went over a nice looking stream. This then led to the meadow section of the trail, about 3-4 miles of this muddy meadow walking. If the meadows weren't covered in mud this wouldn't of been a bad section of the hike but it was pretty terrible walking through foot sinking mid for 3-4 miles. The last section of the trail goes through woods again, mostly flat with a few uphill sections, also about 3-4 miles. If you are trying to get to the bottom of Dunanda falls you must go through campsite 9A3, if you don't you will wind up at the top of the waterfalls on some narrow trails that can be easy to miss. All in all this would've been a great hike had we not had heavy backpacks and been able to pace ourselves instead of racing daylight.

horseback riding
6 months ago

Nice trail for a 2 hours tour go and return with break at the riverside.

backpacking
6 months ago

Hiked in to a backcountry site passed the Yellowstone River suspension bridge. The hike in as most enjoyable with amazing views of landscape and the surrounding mountains. After crossing the suspension bridge we saw what I believe to be an osprey and a bison carcass. The hike out was a bit tonight due to the overnight rain and snow making the trail slick and wet. Overall an amazing hike with many views!!!

Beautiful lightly used. Saw cub and mom black bear on way out

fishing
7 months ago

The first 1/3 is fairly steep but not bad. The second 1/3 is flat and has a good view, and the last third to the lake is slightly steep but downhill. The road is rough but passable. I was able to make it there in Subaru Impreza AWD and only scrapped 2-4 times.

Lots of rocks in the trail, so a lot of time looking at your feet. But very much worth the hike, both for the stream that is either always within sound or site, and the peaceful serenity of Moon and Deer lakes. Went in midAugust, and huckleberries and thimbleberries everywhere. Surprised to see so many flowers as well on the upper 2/3 of the hike.

backpacking
8 months ago

Fish were too easy to catch at Phantom lake. We lost the trail just below the lake but made our way to the lake and across to the other end where there was a nice place to set up camp near the water. Only ones up there 4th of July weekend.

Great trail with a beautiful and quiet lake at the top. Quite a commitment to get to the trail though as a 6 mile dirt road takes about half hour to drive because it's so rough but it's worth it

backpacking
8 months ago

Hike into great camping along the Yellowstone River.

Pack only the necessities if you're going to fish! The trail is rough if you have a lot of weight on you. About an hour and 20 minutes to get to the lake at a moderate pace, so calculate that into when you want to start fishing. Our group caught a total of 9 fish for the day before it got cut short by a mean rain/hail storm. Recommend bait is half a worm on a small hook with a weight 20-26 inches up your line. Beautiful fish!

Amazing views on this trail. Three moose followed us on the trail for a bit

Great good clean path!

10 months ago

Easy trail but the views are worth the intense drive to the trail, beautiful views. if you get car sick this trail head is not for you lol

hiking
10 months ago

Do NOT GO ON THIS TRAIL RIGHT NOW! It is absolutely beautiful but I can imagine it is much more manageable when you can drive to the trail head and hike. It is currently 8+ feet of snow! We did the entire thing just so our dogs could explore. We walked 1 1/2 + miles from the closed road to the sign that states 3 miles to trail head. Once we go to the actual trail head it stated 2.5 miles to the lake. Definitely more than that... once we got there it was completely frozen over. Not to be unexpected with all the snow! We were just hiking in for fun! Not sure when this trail will be ready to use but not anytime soon! We walked 15 miles round trip! It was a beautiful blast in our eyes but if you are looking to fish, look somewhere else!!

walking
11 months ago

Easy. Saw a coyote stalking geese in the pond near the trailhead, then saw some antelope.

hiking
Sunday, April 16, 2017

Beautiful hike, and we had a great time fishing!!

backpacking
Wednesday, March 01, 2017

Great views of meadows and mountains. Saw a black bear, and a Bison. Fairly easy going in, fairly strenuous coming out. Bring water and a camera.

Friday, October 28, 2016

Great trail but keep in mind you'll be going mostly uphill on the way back.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Great, challenging hike. The lakes are beautiful.

hiking
Monday, September 26, 2016

So rainy that day but still a very cool hike. Some people mentioned that this trail wasn't marked well but it was for us. It did look like someone had come through with a gator and cleared a lot of it. The last bit to the lakes is a little more tech and not marked as well. But not terrible. Def take bear spray. Once we got to the lake we heard a pretty intense animal "voice". I assume it was a bear because I don't know what else would have made that noise. Either way it was intimidating.

hiking
Friday, September 09, 2016

It was difficult driving up the road to get to the beginning of the trail, so I recommend a vehicle that can handle the rough road; preferably a truck or AWD. Once you get to the beginning of the trail, the hike is a nice little workout until you reach the final location of Golden Trout Lakes. I believe that the roundtrip distance is a little off compared to this site in my opinion, but I totally recommend this hike to anyone.

hiking
Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Definitely a moderate hike, however the elevation change is spread out pretty well. When you reach the second section of switchbacks be careful, you can easily miss the turn off for the lake. If you continue up these switchbacks you are heading up the trail to Mystic Lake. There is a tower of stones to help guide you to Phantom Lake. Very pretty area with nice views of the valley and lots of small creeks throughout the trail even through August. We ran into several groups during our day hike with a few being backpackers hiking through.

Sunday, August 28, 2016

This is a magnificent trail that is not too difficult and ends at two untouched lakes. Worth every step and the bumpy road to get there.m!

hiking
Thursday, August 25, 2016

The road to reach the trailhead was VERY rough. If you do not have a high ground clearance vehicle I would stay away from this trail. The hike itself was moderately difficult. The grade is a bit intense at the start and when you get closer to the lakes but is mostly flat in the middle. The whole hike took me about 2 hours, with spending 30 minutes at the lakes which were very beautiful!

fishing
Friday, August 12, 2016

road frikin stinks, caughts me sum phatees at the top tho

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