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Hidden Lakes is a 4.8 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Gallatin Gateway, Montana that features a lake. The trail is rated as moderate and is primarily used for hiking, camping, fishing, and fly fishing. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

Distance: 4.8 miles Elevation Gain: 1,190 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dog friendly






Note: The road to the trailhead closes seasonally. Please check with the park for more information.

8 days ago

Gate closed to vehicles about 3 miles before indicated trailhead. Opens June 16th. we walked past the gate though and had a good walk with the kids. Snow on parts of the road but completely passable. We only made is about a mile and a half up the road though.

7 months ago

Well worth the long, rocky drive to get to the trailhead. There was some ATV traffic, but a very pleasant trail. We made it to the lower lake which was beautiful, but completely missed the upper lake which means we have to come back!

9 months ago

Moderate trail with a few steep Ricky spots. The trail is wide, so good fo hiking side by side. Also used by ATVs. The lakes at the top are gorgeous and worth the effort!

10 months ago

This trail was AMAZING. One of the best hikes i’ve ever done. The road going up is very rocky, so be carful and mindful going up. The trail to the lakes is a bit hidden, but once you get to the first lake, go to the right and follow the rocks. It gets steep up at the top, but it’s so worth it. The trail is pretty rocky, so be careful to not twist your ankle. I highly recommend this trail!

10 months ago

Road is tough and no joke. Must have clearance to get up the hill to the trail. The trail itself was mildly trafficked. The lakes were beautiful and we were the only ones there when we got there. It’s a great hike with strong elevation gain and we had storms threaten with a few sprinkles. Beautiful.

Tue Dec 04 2018

Road is very rocky but cars with AWD/4WD should be able to handle this easily. Aside from a couple of steep switchbacks this was a relatively easy hike. Just keep in mind to not stop when you hit the first lake. There is no marked trail to the second lake so I would recommend finding the stream that connects the two. Also don't expect to catch any fish in these lakes due to winter kill a while back.

Thu Sep 13 2018

I made it to the trailhead in a full-size sedan (Kia) without 4wd. The road is very rocky but I got there driving less than 5mph while using the entire road to maneuver around rocks and ditches. The trail to the lake is a pretty gradual climb, but the trail to the good lakes is very steep and poorly marked. It is worth the effort to get to them, but make sure that you pay attention to the trail you took. This trail is pretty secluded so also make sure that you bring everything you may need in case of an emergency, namely a camera :)

Wed Sep 12 2018

Great hike and beautiful hidden lakes, very tranquil Road is rough getting up to the trailhead, recommend a 4x4 or rental car.

Sun Sep 02 2018

This trail was a good half day trip! It was a truly magical place! There are a number of lakes up there and they are all connected! There are also some great vantage points on the way up

Mon Jul 30 2018

Three lakes in less than 5mi RT? Perfect! The upper hidden lake still had some snow and the hike was beautiful. A little steep on your way to the upper lake.

Fri Jul 27 2018

Great place and few people. The first part of the hike is on a wide trail but up on top of a level area is a potentially confusing intersection with an arrow indicating the trail straight ahead but go right instead. There is a hard-to-see sign that says Hidden Lakes nailed to a tree. From here the trail heads down and then up to small Lily Lake. Look for the faint and narrow trail heading steeply uphill on the northwest corner of the camping area to reach Lower and Upper Hidden Lakes. Usually snow even in July and good fishing for Golden Trout.

Thu Jul 12 2018

Super fun hike- I was completely alone with my dogs which is always amazing. I was able to easily make it to all the lakes, but I’m glad I had my phone gps and maps. The trail up to the upper two lakes is much narrower and not well marked. However the trail is worn and easy to follow once you are on it.

Mon Jun 25 2018

Fun and quick hike. Brought the fly rod and found some brook trout in the lake

Tue Oct 17 2017

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.

Tue Aug 29 2017

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.

Mon May 29 2017

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

Mon Sep 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.

Sun Aug 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!

Thu Aug 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!

Tue Aug 09 2016

The road in is longer than anticipated, not marked very well, and mandates slow driving and therefore taking more time! The hike itself is moderately challenging not well marked but well worth the outcome!!

Sat Jul 30 2016

Aptly named trail because I couldn't find the lakes! In July this was just a brutal amount of uphill downhill all day in the heat. The trail also isn't amazingly marked, wound up going down the trail to beavertail creek. It's Montana, so it's still beautiful, just make sure someone knows what's up when you go.

Mon Sep 28 2015

Beautiful lakes and forests! camping at the top lake is great!

Sun Jul 05 2015

Great views from above the lakes

Sat Sep 20 2014

Portal Cr road is rough but passable. The bigger issue is the condition of the trail. Freshly cleared and yet still littered with moderate boulders, this trail was a veritable slog through sucking mud and over slick rock. It was raining the whole time, so so we didn't get to see the whole Chain 'O Lakes. Once you reach the ridge line, you still have to trudge through more poorly cut trail and across the creek. Might have been really pretty, but it was all socked in. Better luck next time. Try Golden Trout lakes too if you have the time!

Wed Jul 16 2014

First third and last third are medium. With a pack it was a bit technical times. July 4th weekend still snow on the trail in places. Totally worth it. Great hike. Camped overnight at the 2nd lake. Beautiful.

Wed Jan 15 2014

Pretty easy hike to a chain several lakes good views bad road.

8 months ago

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