Blue Lake

MODERATE 33 reviews
#15 of 92 trails in

Blue Lake is a 7.5 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Melville, Montana that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, camping, and horses and is best used from May until October. Dogs and horses are also able to use this trail.

DISTANCE
7.5 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
2,175 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dog friendly

camping

hiking

horseback riding

lake

river

waterfall

bridge out

rocky

washed out

backpacking
4 days ago

Spent 4 days at Blue Lake. We backpacked in and spent a few nights and went on a couple nice day hikes to explore from there. It CAN be done as a day hike, to go up and then come right back, but I like how my friend put it, "Why would I wanna leave this?" It is a beautiful place to spend a few days. This was my very first backpacking trip ever, and it will definitely NOT be my last. We hiked around Blue Lake over to Thunder Lake and over to Thunder Rapids - VERY cool experience over there. Then we kinda strolled over to Granite Lake, but turned back as the weather was getting pretty hairy.

The one thing is to ignore the elevation indicators on the map...this was ALL uphill, with the second part after you cross the creek going into pretty strenuous hiking at times through several switch backs. Not too bad necessarily if you're just day hiking, but can be pretty intense if you've got 50+ lbs on your back.

We went during the middle of the week and came back Saturday morning, which I would say is perfect, as there were quite a few people that started coming up Friday night, and then a TON of people coming up Saturday. It's a very popular hiking area, which is good and bad depending on what you're wanting. Blue Lake is great to come up to if you're looking for a nice basecamp area to do other day hikes from. The primo spot is right in the middle of the peninsula where we set up out eating area.

18 days ago

Not as much climbing as we anticipated. Saw handfuls of deer and weather. Jumped in the Lower Twin for a brisk refresher.

hiking
22 days ago

Great hike though rather strenuous in with elevation change. 7/22 bridge to Blue Lake is gone. We decided not to cross on a log and continued on to the first lake on the main trail. Bring bug spray as horse flys are hungry! Great Day! 8.8 miles round trip to the first of two lakes way up there.

hiking
1 month ago

Tried hiking this on July 7. It looks like the bridge is washed out right as you leave the main trail to turn up to Blue Lake. I saw a few people on the other side, but I’m not sure where they crossed. The river was really high with the snow melting off. Still an awesome mountain range to visit even though I didn’t make it to Blue Lake.

hiking
2 months ago

Tried hiking to Blue Lake on 6/1. Made it three miles in and had to turn around because the snow was too deep. It was hard to stay on the trail because there were no signs and the snow covered any path! Would suggest waiting a few more weeks. The views of the Crazies were still amazing just wish more of the snow had melted so we could have gone farther! The last few miles of the road to Half Moon Campground are very rocky BTW.. Would definitely suggest a 4WD car/ a car with a high clearance.

4 months ago

It is eight miles! Not 7.5 lol. It was just absolutely breathe taking. We went in October so we didn't have as many access to the lake as we wanted.

5 months ago

Beautiful area, we went to the area to summit Crazy Peak and camp near the lake!

hiking
10 months ago

We hiked just the first bit of this trail on Sept 16, 2017 primarily to see the waterfalls. The last 2 miles of road to the campground were very rough. The weather changed from sun to cold wind and light rain and back to sun in just a couple of hours, but we enjoyed the short hike and the waterfall is pretty and easy to access. There is a lot of rocky area around to get different views of the falls. Although it looked like great bear habitat, we did not see any animals except a few intrepid chipmunks. The views of the Crazies from the canyon road and all the way to the campground were spectacular, especially with the frosting of snow.

11 months ago

I would give this 10 starts if I could. My favorite hike out of all my hikes ♡ a challenge at points but a great experience. And blue lake does not disappoint! don't be fooled by the mud puddle that comes before it lol.

backpacking
Monday, July 24, 2017

Great hiking! Water for filtering available most of the way. Rocky terrain so prepare with decent shoes.

Sunday, August 14, 2016

great Hike, interesting rock formations, and lots of wandering paths around the lakes.

Foragers will find Raspberries, Huckleberries, and elderberries in abundance around Mid August.

backpacking
Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Awsome trail, moderate to easy. great family hike to blue lake and granite lake.

hiking
Thursday, March 17, 2016

The Crazy Mountains are called crazy because the weather changes so crazily - or so I've been told. The dates that I visited this location (September 8 and 9, 2014, were crazy. The weather was crisp but warm enough for short sleeve t-shirt, and the sun was shining. Set up camp at Half Moon campground. It was so late in the season the camping fee box was already sealed for the winter and the water pump handles were removed. (I had brought in my own water.) Overnight the temp dropped to freezing and a thick fog rolled in. I did the hike anyway with the trail still easy to follow in the fog (and I had a track laid out on my gps). I did get to Blue Lake, but I did not "see" it through the fog. The hike itself is very enjoyable. When I came back down the mountain I had a weather update that called for freezing sleet, so I sadly packed up camp a day early. I am going back in 2016... hoping to see the lake this time.

hiking
Thursday, January 21, 2016

We were there back in August 2015. The road to get to the trailhead is horrendous at the time, not sure if that is a one off or just how it is, but we nearly got car sick bouncing around from about halfway in until we got to the parking lot, in a 4 wheel drive vehicle which seems like a must. BUT, with that being said, the trail itself more than made up for that bump in the road (or bumps!). Big Timber Falls is a great first stop, and it only gets better from there. The scenery is amazing! I was awestruck the entire hike, stopping here and there just to take in the beauty of the area. Never seen anything like it in my life!

hiking
Sunday, August 30, 2015

Nice day hike or base camp for a couple days of exploring. The .4 mile side trip to Timber Falls is a very short must.

camping
Friday, July 03, 2015

Great campground. You aren't right on the Big Timber creek, but you can hear it from the camp spots. Only $5 a night and great access to trails. At a minimum, you want to walk up to the Big Timber Falls which is only a 20 minute hike. You will find snow on the trails up to Blue Lake through June. Can't recommend enough.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Phenomenal place. Great scenery, lots of flowers and lofty peaks. Fishing wasn't the best as I remember, probably due to all of the traffic. Please respect the no fire rule around the lakes, this is a busy place.

hiking
Saturday, July 27, 2013

Great hiking and camping. To Blue Lake - 4 hours in, 2 hours out. Be aware of the wood fire restrictions. Don't miss Big Timber Creek Falls about 5+ minutes into hike (sign and path on left). Or the falls just above the first bridge on the right. Horseback trail rides available in area. It looked like the Lazy K Bar Ranch provided cabins and horses.

hiking
Thursday, June 28, 2012

Great backpacking trip with our 3 teenagers. After 3rd bridge, finding trail was difficult, lots of snow (June) but we found our way up to the drainage pond below Granite and Blue lake. Also along trail, one huge washed out ravine to climb down and over, there is a horse path marked there also. Beautiful scenery! We loved this home, also stop at big timber falls on your way out

mountain biking
Friday, September 30, 2011

I rode my dirt bike up... There's an awesome trail for 4x4s or dirt bikes! Good trip for the off roders!

hiking
Tuesday, August 03, 2010

A challenging yet not too long of a hike for those new to hiking. This trail begins at the trail head near Half Moon Campgrounds in Big Timber Canyon. There is plenty of parking for day hikers.

The trail itself is quite groomed except maybe the last mile up the mountain to the lake. This part of the hike can get pretty rocky and rough on the feet. It is a beautiful hike that crossed the Big Timber creek 3 times, all 3 with man-made bridges for easy crossing.

Total round trip took us 6 hours, mainly because none of us were in hiking shape and we had about 4 kids with us and stopped plenty to rest and swim. 4 Hours up, 2 hours down.

camping
Tuesday, August 03, 2010

This is a beautiful campground that sits right above the roaring Big Timber creek and just 5 minutes from Big Timber falls lookout. There are about 8 campsites which are around $5 per night to stay. It is on a first-come basis but during the week it can be quite empty.

The horse flies can get quite thick in the summer, bring some Off Spray if you have it. There is a pump for fresh water as well as an enclosed outhouse.

This place is beautiful and the perfect place to start a hike up the crazies to the lakes at the top or simply just to view the waterfalls. Highly recommended.

hiking
22 days ago

hiking
2 months ago

9 months ago

hiking
10 months ago

hiking
11 months ago

hiking
Sunday, July 02, 2017

hiking
Wednesday, June 21, 2017

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