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South Fork Ross Creek Trail is a 7.1 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Troy, Montana that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from April until September. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

Length 7.1 mi Elevation gain 1,325 ft Route type Out & Back

Dog friendly

Hiking

Nature trips

Walking

Bird watching

Running

Forest

River

Views

Waterfall

Wild flowers

Wildlife

Description
Waypoints (0)
Facilities
Getting There

Nice day hike with a couple of small water crossings. One of the water crossings across a pretty large fallen tree as your bridge about 10 ft over the water. There is a deep gorge just shy of reaching the falls. Beautiful place to rest for lunch/snack. The first part of the hike is through the Ross Creek Cedars which is very easy open trail (great for kids). The hike up to the falls takes about 3 hours from the parking lot and about half that returning. After leaving the bottom part of the trail, depending on how fast you proceed, there is a pretty steep section.

Parking and restrooms at the trail head of Ross Creek Cedars.

From Main St. (Hwy. 200) in Thompson Falls, head west through town, and continue on through Trout Creek and Noxon. About midway between Noxon and Heron, turn right on Hwy 56. The turnoff to the Cedars is located just before the south end of Bull Lake. Turn left, and follow the road until just before the camping area, where you will make another left. From this point, it is just a little over 4 mi. to the Ross Creek Cedars parking lot. The road to the Cedars is newly paved, but becomes somewhat steep and winding a little ways up.

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (37)
Photos (58)
Recordings (26)
Completed (69)
Sam whatever
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarTue Jun 23 2020
HikingBugsFlooded

Beautiful hike, first 3 miles are perfect, last stretch where the creeks split is extremely flooded and you are not able to continue up South Fork Ross Creek to the falls. the trail markers lead you up trail #124 so keep your eyes on your GPS. Saw a young grizzly at the 3.5 mi mark on the way back, he was real skittish so no worries.

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Ryan Burke
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSun Jun 21 2020
Hiking

I took my hound on a hike today. the trees are amazing. the weather was good and the misquotes weren't bad at all, I got there 8am and didn't see anyone until 1200. my dog wasn't sure about the tree bridge but after a little convincing he was fine. tried to find the North trail but lost it at the creek. so I turned around and went to the South trail followed it to the waterfall

serena harris
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFri Jun 05 2020
HikingWashed out

Took the dogs up to the waterfall today, absolutely gorgeous. The trail is so peaceful and shady, reminds me of fern gully! So many trees and streams. The parking lot was more crowded than I thought, with most people on the nature loop. The further you go the less people you see. The trail has flooded in some areas but you can easily follow the pink and red ribbons tied to the trees to keep you on track! Definitely realized how out of shape I am once we started the uphill portion of the hike. Waterfalls were so pretty though, totally worth it!

Brenda Ruthizer
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarTue Jul 02 2019
Hiking

Great cool hike through the Big Cedars, fun creek crossings, and a great workout steep climb up! Did not make the waterfall, but it was a great hike anyway!

Rick Shuman
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarTue May 28 2019
Off trailOver grownWashed out

Beautiful hike, the falls were worth the effort. Some advice when trying to find the trail. Once you leave the nature trail, keep the Bull river on your left. The map shows 2 different river crossings but if you wait to cross the Bull river until after Ross Creek joins it, the trail is easier to follow. Once you cross the Bull river, you have to backtrack to where Ross Creek joins it. Keep Ross Creek on your LEFT as you follow it up. The trail to the falls is not much more than a game trail but once you find it, you'll be good.

Brian Duggan
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarThu May 16 2019
Hiking

The trail was beautiful. The cedars are larger than I thought, and the walk along the creek is very nice. There were a few sections where the trail crosses a creek where we had to hunt for the best way to get across, but nothing too far out of the way. Unfortunately we saw a grizzly bear just about 1.7 miles in and we had to turn around. Luckily we were on the other side of a small creek when he came running down the opposite creek bed. Be careful out there and be sure to make plenty of noise.

Olivier André
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarSun Aug 12 2018
Hiking

The nature loop and the first part of the hike (till the passing of the 2 rivers) are really worth to do amongst the giant cedars. The second part was much less attractive with a very steep path full of high blue flowers. As the sky was very hazy with the smog (from fires), we did not make it to the end and went back from 1 mile of the final creek. Our GPS measured a 12K hike. A bear was seen the day before.

Kathy Allen
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSat Jul 28 2018

One of the most beautiful hikes I have ever taken! About halfway through the nature Loop there's a trail that goes off to the right which heads up towards the falls. I was surprised that there were many more Giants Cedars along this Trail also not just down at the nature Loop. I did not make it to the falls this time but hope to do this again sometime soon!

C F
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMon May 28 2018
Hiking

Awesome spring view of falls. Well worth the wading through the crowd of people kids & dogs to get to the “real” hike. No snow in trail today. You must be comfortable in using GPS because several spots you need to go “off trail” to find a log to walk across to get across the creeks.

Justin Mills
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMon May 21 2018

This is one of the most memorable hikes by far!!! It starts in the parking lot your amazed by the view of the trail head “seriously breathtaking!!” Trail is clear and easy to navigate....until! Haha we ran into snow the trail disappeared luckily my wife noticed one other persons “footprints” going in. The snow was hard packed but at least 3 ft deep in some areas. I am 200 lbs my wife is 105 and got a kick out of me kept falling into holes up to my knees! We went about another mile in total of 2.5 at this time my wife had an encounter with a cow moose she spooked it ran to me and it ran up the hill after coming towards her. Lots of fallen cedars to take cover at this time we jumped on one and waited 10 minutes after we went back on trail at this time roughly 2.7 miles in the trail is washed out from the creeks over run from snow. We got to the final creek crossing and couldn’t cross due to the time we had and how high the water was. We returned back easy to back track with our foot marks in the snow. We got back. Will deff do this hike again. Highly recommend if you want to do all that you wait until at least end of may to middle of June. 5 stars for the views!

Eileen Hittle
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSun Jun 18 2017
Hiking

The cedars are enormous and beautiful. We didn't hike very much of the area, maybe 3 or 4 miles total since we started late in the day, but I want to come bike and hike the whole thing! This is an easy walk. And the creek is gorgeous!

C M
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarTue Apr 25 2017
Hiking

Breathtaking. You feel small walking among those trees.

Brian AP-Exploring
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarThu Dec 01 2016
Hiking

This place is unforgettable, when hiking in and around the giant cedars you'll think you stepped back in time. Very easy to hike, sometimes it can become busy but most of the times your alone in the cedars.

Bob Blanford
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarTue Aug 30 2016
Hiking

This hike goes through an old growth cedar ecosystem. It is a easy 2.8 miles to the first main creek crossing from the Ross Creek Cedars parking lot. After crossing the creek it is a short distance to the junction of trail 321 and 142.. Trail 321 heads up the south fork to the water fall. The last section is pretty steep and the tread reworked this summer. You go through a section that burned in 2015. The crew did a lot of work and a great job. I would rate the waterfall a 6 of 10. It is probably more spectacular earlier in the season. I had 4 miles on my gps to the water fall from the parking lot.

Colleen White
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSat Jul 30 2016
Hiking

It was great!! The first part is really easy. The last mile pretty is rough. The trail crew was out working on it. The waterfall was nice but I would rate it a 6 out of 10.

William Gregory
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarTue Jul 22 2014
Hiking

Nice Day Hike...Up and back can be done in about 5 hours. It's about 6.5 miles RT from the parking lot. About 2 miles from the South Fork Trail head. There is a pretty steep section about 2/3 of the trail in but the first part of the trail is easy. 2 water crossings: one over a huge tree about 10 ft over the water--added a nice touch of adventure. Moderate rating for the hike overall as it's not an easy stroll --although it's a pretty mellow hike for the first half, the steep portion about 2/3 of the way in was not short! This trail follows Ross Creek the entire way. The trail begins about 2 miles along the Nature Trail through the Scenic Area. Begin this hike by fording Ross Creek. Trail 321 is overgrown and somewhat difficult to find, but once located, the trail is easy to follow to a waterfall and potential campsite. The side slope is eroded in a few places and should be hiked with caution.

Darya Zhuraukina
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarThu Jul 09 2020
Hiking
Adam Barber
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSat Jun 27 2020
Hiking
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Christopher Schmitt
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSun May 24 2020
Hiking
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donald Plank
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSat Nov 09 2019
Hiking
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Tracie Babor
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarFri Oct 18 2019
Hiking
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Mary Alicea
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSat Sep 14 2019
Hiking
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Scott Lyons
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarSun Sep 01 2019
Hiking
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Scott Lyons
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarSun Sep 01 2019
Hiking
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Randal Ruiz
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSat Aug 31 2019
Hiking
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Craig Anderson
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSat Jul 06 2019
Hiking
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Brenda Ruthizer
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSat Jun 29 2019
Hiking
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