Help keep our trails and parks open during COVID-19 by committing to social distancing. Some trails or park services may be closed this weekend so check with local authorities before heading out.
Learn more

Quinnebaugh Meadows and Sundance Lake via West Fork of Rock Creek Trail

moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(33)
Absaroka-Beartooth Wilderness

Quinnebaugh Meadows and Sundance Lake via West Fork of Rock Creek Trail is a 12.7 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Red Lodge, Montana that features a river and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until October. Dogs and horses are also able to use this trail.

Length 12.7 mi Elevation gain 2,227 ft Route type Out & Back
Dog friendly Kid friendly Fishing Hiking Horseback riding Mountain biking Nature trips Walking Bird watching River Views Wild flowers Wildlife
Waypoints (0)
Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (34)
Photos (94)
Recordings (17)
Completed (85)
View user's profile page
Michael Leeson
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarAugust 19, 2020
BackpackingGreat!Rocky

Hiked to the meadows with kids (ages 5-16) and did day hikes around. Mary Lake was stunning and a difficult 1.5 mile from the meadow. The hike to the meadows was moderate but difficult for the first 1.5 miles. Lots of boulders to step over/around and no shade due to 2008? fires. Definitely recommend starting early to cover ground in the cool part of the day. Waterfalls on the way are great. There's a nice swimming spot I believe after the 2nd falls. Toward the end of the meadows there is lots of camping space with tree cover near the river.

View user's profile page
Noel Anderson
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarAugust 12, 2020
HikingNo shade

Hiked Wednesday August 12, 2020 from 9:30 AM - 1:00 PM Rather than do the full 10 mile out and back to the meadows, we opted for a 5 mile out and back to Sentinel Falls. Trailhead parking was ¼ full when we arrived and ½ full when we left. Gravel road leading to the trailhead is washboarded. I was driving 15-20 mph much of the time. Encountered 9 parties total including 1 on horseback. No bugs. We recorded 600 feet of elevation gain, but it didn’t seem like that much. Hiking boots were appreciated for rocky sections of the trail. I didn’t use my trekking poles. Enjoyed watching pikas in the boulder field between Calamity Falls and Sentinel Falls. There is also a scenic spot along the river between the falls with a couple rocks and some logs which make for nice resting and snacking. In general, there are good views of the canyon walls as most trees were killed by a fire in 2008. Many new growth trees are knee to waist high. Lots of wildflowers, raspberries, and huckleberries.

View user's profile page
Steve Purcell
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 7, 2020

Actually did this hike in early July. Made it to the base of Sundance Pass before turning back due to weather. Absolutely beautiful hike. Quinnebaugh Meadows is a great place to stop for an overnighter. Not a difficult trip at all, I imagine some of the other reviews turned right at the beginning and went to Red Lodge plateau which is a more difficult hike. Make sure you take the left fork at the very beginning of the trail.

View user's profile page
Robyn Fogle
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJuly 25, 2020
HikingGreat!

Very enjoyable hike for me and my pup. No sign specific to either trail, but you'll go towards Sundance Pass. Tons of wildflowers the whole way! Beautiful waterfalls and shallow creeks to wade in. Lots of intermittent shade once you get past the first mile or two. I clocked about 4.5 miles to what I believe was the main "meadow" where you do have to cross a shallow creek. We hiked another 3 miles past that and saw the lake (I think) down below. I'm not sure you would actually arrive "at" the lake from this trail, but regardless, it is beautiful! Rather steep towards the end. Also the last 4 miles of the road to get to the trailhead is unpaved and grooved. It was a bit sketchy in a front wheel drive truck.

View user's profile page
Allison Potter
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 18, 2020
HikingBugs
View user's profile page
Amber Lowry
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 17, 2020

A great day hike for kiddos with a picnic in the meadows. Wild flowers and waterfalls Super doable for all skill levels.

View user's profile page
Olivia V.
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 3, 2020
HikingRocky

Great day hike! The views are beautiful the whole way in and out. The meadow is a lovely place to chill out and eat a packed lunch. The trail pretty much follows a stream with cute water falls and good swimming areas. There is some woodsy parts of the trail and rock gardens too! Not much incline and very gradual.

View user's profile page
Kassi Geist
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 4, 2020
HikingMuddySnow

What an amazing hike! I was hoping to hike beyond the meadows and camp for the night, but I got sick of fighting snow and turned back. Absolutely stunning. Just be aware of snow, it gets pretty deep passed the meadow. Some areas are very muddy, lots of flowing water. Wear good, thick shoes. Not many people, only saw 2 on my way out.

View user's profile page
Rhonda Denny
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMay 30, 2020
HikingBugsMuddyRocky

The trail was great I just wasn’t prepared. Very rocky, needed harder sole’d hikers. Didn’t have bear spray, so turned back when I came across fresh grizzly tracks in the mud. So i didn’t go in as far as i had hoped. Between knowing a Bear was near by and the few snakes on the trial, I was a bit skittish. But the hike was overall really great and it was beautiful.

View Rhonda's Recording
View user's profile page
Wendy Stiff
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMay 26, 2020
View user's profile page
Kari Wilkey
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarAugust 5, 2018

Pretty trail and views. Very rocky, need shoes or boots if taking horses.

View user's profile page
Mike Forstner
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMay 5, 2018

beautiful. my favorite place to fish.

View user's profile page
Anne Holub
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 30, 2017
Hiking

Great hike. We went about 3 miles in and the trail becomes a bit more shaded with switchbacks in a few places. Great waterfalls just a short detour off the main trail as you go up, and alongside the trail in he beginning of the shaded area. Lots of wildflowers in late July. Even the burned sections were growing a lot of brush and were gorgeous. Great views. Fun with the dog along too.

View user's profile page
Jaimee Erickson
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 7, 2017

Beautiful hike!

View user's profile page
Frank Huffman
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarJuly 6, 2017

First half was burned in '88 (I guess) with little regrowth, but starting at Sentinel Falls you walk through beautiful forest and along rapids, cascades and falls. Great views of glaciated valley, and variety of gneissic granite.

View user's profile page
Jim Slack
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 27, 2017
Backpacking

Absolutely beautiful hike. We backpacked up to the Meadows the weekend of June 24-25, 2017 to use as a base camp for exploring and fishing. The trail is stunning. Multiple waterfalls as the trail close follows Rock Creek with multiple water sources enroute. A creek divides the Meadows, so there is a constant supply of water available (we use the Grayl Ultralight to filter water - they are awesome and don't break the bank). The trail has a good bit of traffic and quite a few people came up to the Meadows on day hikes, but only a few stayed the night. The Meadows are so big though, we didn't really see anyone much. We brought our Beagle who thought she had died and went to Dog Heaven! The trailhead begins just a few yards above the parking area and is a gradual ascent all the way to Quinnepaugh; my GPS reported a total 1200-foot climb over the five-mile hike from the parking area. There are only a couple areas with switchbacks, the largest at Sentinel Falls, but it is short in duration. Overall, it isn't a difficult hike. (I think some of the reviews below are misposted or the person was hiking a different trail.)

View user's profile page
Jennifer Benjamin
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJuly 14, 2016
Hiking

About a mile hike from where you park to get to the actual trailhead. Steep switchbacks at the beginning of the trailhead but evens out once you get to the top of them. Multiple small stream crossings and a beautiful view! Went about 3 1/2 miles and turned back due to an incoming storm.

View user's profile page
Katie Lehman
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarAugust 21, 2015
Hiking

We happened upon this by accident. Wernt sure where we were so we went about 3 miles, and turned back.

View user's profile page
Beth McGillvray
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarJune 28, 2015
Walking

It was nice. Very pretty views with a nice creek to look at while you walk. The first part of the trail is very steep!! That's where you gain 1600 ft elevation! But then the rest is downhill.

View user's profile page
Joshua Sizemore
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSeptember 1, 2014
First to Review

Pretty. But it's a very steep beginning. Looks like you can drive in the first 1.5 miles. Saves a bit of time of walking on a road. Trail is steep and isn't well beaten. Which makes it perfect. Took my puppy and he had a great time. You walk along a creek for a fair amount of time so they can cool off and you can take a bite to eat. Well recommended

View user's profile page
Ryan Whiteside
Gray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarSeptember 2, 2020
Hiking
View Ryan's Recording
View user's profile page
A Brady
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 26, 2020
Hiking
View A's Recording
View user's profile page
Robyn Fogle
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJuly 25, 2020
Hiking
View Robyn's Recording
View user's profile page
Gena Buhler
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 31, 2019
Hiking
View Gena's Recording
View user's profile page
Chris Chris McKitterick
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 31, 2019
View Chris's Recording
View user's profile page
Daniel Sloan
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 13, 2019
Hiking
View Daniel's Recording
Showing results 1 - 26 of 34