Jewel Basin Trail No. 717

MODERATE 43 reviews
#2 of 35 trails in

Jewel Basin Trail No. 717 is a 3.2 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Bigfork, Montana that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from July until September. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

3.2 miles
1259 feet

dogs on leash


mountain biking

trail running






wild flowers



The Jewel Basin Complex is a point-to-point located near Kalispell, Montana including 27 lakes and 35 miles of trails; good for all skill levels. The trail is primarily used for hiking and is accessible from July (expect some snow still) until October (rain and snow later in the month). The trail starts at the Jewel Basin Hiking area parking lot, Camp Misery Trail Head. The trail climbs the highest point in the Jewel Basin Area, Mt Aeneas 7528ft, and ends at the Picnic Lakes.

4 months ago

We hiked this trail right after it snowed. Beautiful scenery and a challenging climb. The view from Mt Aeneas was gorgeous. We took a different trail down.

5 months ago

Great hike. Great views. LOVED IT! Just know the above info is not correct. My guess is the 3.2 miles is one way. Forgot to charge my GPS or would have a number for you. The map above is not the loop the description talks about either. It shows the hike as basically an out and back trip (ignore the loop it shows). If I had studied the map at the trail head, I would have found 717 goes down the other side of the summit and swings back around to Picnic Lakes. From the lakes you can proceed back the the parking lot finishing your loop. So study the map (or get one to take), know that your hike is likely 6 to 7 miles long and the hike is more than just a gradual incline to the summit. Also, don't forget to enjoy every step. Without the loop (which I would have loved) it's still a fabulous hike!

5 months ago

Awesome views and a great trail to hike! Certainly one of the best trails I have ever hiked!

5 months ago

Amazing wildflowers! Shade and blue skies. Bring a map for peace of mind.

5 months ago

Visited from Canada. We hiked to Twin Lakes which was very beautiful. My friend jumped in which was glacier cold. Bring your bug spray!

Thursday, December 01, 2016

Great place to start hiking, watch your trail markers, several trails cross over and run along side. Great views of the Lake and South Kalispell. Late spring has been the best time for me.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Didn't see any wildlife, but some great views on the way to Birch Lake.

Saturday, August 06, 2016

Pretty area. Trail gets a bit narrow and overgrown at points. Good for wildlife and birdwatching.

Friday, August 05, 2016

Great hike. Spectacular views. We even saw a big white mountain goat walking along the trail.

Sunday, July 31, 2016

Gorgeous -

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

awesome views

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

The scenery on this trail is spectacular and is achievable for even novice hikers. The trails are well marked and facilities at the trailhead are well maintained. Be sure to bring plenty of water and don't forget your bear spray.

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Only able to do 4 mile hike today, due to time constraints. However, the views are spectatular and the trails are well maintained. I plan to return with more time, and a better map!

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Very beautiful hike with multiple views. Would love to do this again. We took the trail to the top of Mt. Aeneas which is in my opinion is better than taking the road.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Took the trail up to Mt. Aenneas and then wrapped back around through the Picnic lakes to the trail head. You can find more details and photos on hikingforliving dot com. Beautiful views at the top! 7 miles or so total.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Did the hike to Birch Lake today. Temps in lower 70's! Problem was smoke from Canadian fires stopped our views of the Flathead Valley. Still some spots of snow. Great hike of approx 6.5 miles.

Tuesday, September 03, 2013

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Tuesday, September 03, 2013


Friday, August 02, 2013

Started by hiking from Camp Misery up to the Summit of Mount Aeneas. The views the whole way up and on the top were amazing and some of the best I've seen on any hike. Due to fires the sky was a bit hazy but we could still see the flathead valley and the flathead lake as well as all the surrounding mountains. The first part of the hike is moderate, not too bad. Once you start getting to the summit and once on the summit the hiking gets more intense. Go slow and bring water. However, our guest was able to do it with a fake hip and sandals on. Be careful! Going down is rocky and steep. The lakes are so beautiful and the views are so worth it. This is one of my favorite hikes. I highly recommend it. Bring a jacket because even in the summertime it can get cold by the lakes. Picnic lake is a great place for a picnic :).

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Jewel basin is a well groomed trail system with a number of lakes and overlooks. Trail 717 is simply a connection to a large trail system. The Jewel basin trail system has hikes ranging from 1-10 miles approximately. If you have not visited this trail system I would suggest it, and bring a fishing rod because the fishing is good in many of the lakes, namely Wildcat lake and Strawberry lake.

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