Explore the most popular trails near Darby with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.


Darby, Montana Map
trail running
3 months ago

Easy and very well maintained. Perfect for trail running.

I didn’t hike this trail, however my friends and I did climb Trapper Peak. Following is a description of the two other ways to climb the Peak; both are very scenic. First alternate trail; hike into Baker Lake, then proceed to Gem lake. From Gem Lake take the south couloir. As you near the top, bear right (it does get a little steeper). If you go left (east) you will come out upon a cliff. As you top out, continue west through the trees, climbing slightly. Eventually you will encounter the ridge trail of this hike.

Second hike description; Again, hike into Baker Lake. From Baker go directly south. You may have to navigate around a small marshy area. If so, do it to the West but not too much: just skirt it. Your goal is to come in contact with the ridge directly south of Baker. There is a trail up this ridge: a steep 300 ft climb, on top of the ridge you will find a very nice trail which follows the south ridge. You will be looking down on Baker, Middle, and Gem Lakes. As you reach the ridge above Gem Lake, the trail fades some what. Continue on West through the same trees described in the first alternate trail hike, again climbing slightly. Views on both described trails are worth the hikes.

One can go up the couloir from Gem Lake and come back the ridge trail. I would not recommend coming down the couloir.

Great hike-did not seem overgrown but clear - would rate as moderate

4 months ago

Trail is a little overgrown, but there was no traffic. Beautiful hike along the water.

What a great hike. Made it up in a little under 3 hours. Although it's a hard hike and would plan for at least 4 hours to get the top. Awesome views but very windy would bring extra clothes depending on the weather.

The trail upkeep was very minimal. Due to a lack of trail markers, we got lost about 5 times on the way up. The views were well worth the trouble and the lake water is very clean. I recommend trying to find a campsite near Hart or the waterfall.

5 months ago

Our group was age 13-48 and although the length of this trail is short we give it moderate rating. Trail is steep and rocky most of the way. The lake is beautiful and we all swam and hung out. If you make it to Baker Lake, keep going to middle and Gem lakes - not much farther and gorgeous!

5 months ago

Fabulous hike and very challenging. Going up is challenging but coming down is very hard on the knees. Some in the party found using trek poles to be helpful especially coming down.

I recommend going straight up to the false summit then drop down a little to scramble over to the saddle. Then climb straight up from the saddle to the peak. Best, easiest, and shortest route.

5 months ago

Fun hike. Did in 2 hours 40 mins. We kept a good pace. Now back to Hamilton for a beer.

Easy, gorgeous hike! Did the entire loop last year. Currently camped at Three Frogs by the start of the trail. Going again Saturday morning.

This is a fantastic trail that I will definitely return to. I agree with the reviews that this is a great family hike, but want to add one little disclaimer. I was a little nervous in a few parts with my recently-turned 5 year old son, and I was glad my wife and I had our two year old strapped to our back. The drop-off is steep in a few parts, and you could tumble for a long ways. Like I said, fantastic trail — but wanted to give a warning to those with really little hikers.

Gorgeous trail and very easy. Beautiful to do almost anytime of the year. I went there in June and there was still some snow on the back end of the trail but overall very pleasant hike

Beautifully maintained hike with lots of variation in forest type. Bit of a stretch for the six year old, but we made it!

Hiked it with my 16 year old son, nice little hike

very hard trail..i went with teenagers.. so my knees hada hard time coming down.. best thing is... take your time.
..its gorgeous at the top.

6 months ago

Really pleasantly surprised by the waterfall near the middle of the loop. Great to start and end at a beach on a hot day.

6 months ago

Walked this trail on the 4th with the kiddos and my elderly mother in law in a wheelchair. It was nice to have a paved trail for the first little bit so that grandma could enjoy a little of the beautiful outdoors. The kids hiked farther up the trail and everyone had an enjoyable time. Very easy with beautiful views of lake the whole way.

We did this two years ago in July and it is one of the more challenging hikes I’ve ever done but so worth it. The last mile is a lot of scrambling. the view from the top is phenomenal and you’re able to see several lakes. Plan for a full day with plenty of water and snacks!

6 months ago

Easy because it’s short ... steep and challenging for the young, seniors, and semi in shape types of people ... take your walking sticks and camera ... views are great!

7 months ago

This is such a fun place! Great for swimming towards the end of the hike! Curious...any particular time there are not many yellow jackets? I love this place so much but there were so so many yellow jackets and my daughter was stung twice on the trail. I want to go when they are not swarming :). Gorgeous place and easy trail. So much fun!

Amazing trail.
1. $5 fee so have cash or check.
2. On the east side of the lake the water has washed out the trail. You can bravely venture across if you're sure footed (not recommended for kiddos, elderly or dogs who aren't water aware)...downstream 12 feet -ish there is a log you can cross (also not recommended for those mentioned above).
We had an amazing time on this hike and the waterfall area is worth every footstep. Gorgeous!

Easy to follow, mostly level, and dead gorgeous. Great way to ease in to the summer hiking season.

First hike of the season. I did the full loop and had a great time. The trail was a bit sloppy in places from the snowmelt but was otherwise easy to follow. Free parking if you go between Labor Day and Memorial Day. Including a break for lunch, it took me just over 3 hours.

Sunday, December 03, 2017

Did this trail on horse back in summer 2016. Perfect!!

Monday, November 20, 2017

We did this hike at the end of October. It was very pleasant to hike along the creek. The sun was hidden behind the mountains in the afternoon which made it chilly, good layering was helpful!

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Great fall hike. Tamarasks were just starting to change. Ran into about a foot of snow below Hart lake so struggled a bit with route below the lake

Monday, September 11, 2017

We backpacked in to Baker Lake, camped and then went up via the Gem Lake Gully. We returned via the Baker Lake Ridge. The return has a steep decent close to Baker. Gem Lake Gully was a climb but not too tough. My 4 year old son did the whole hike to the summit unaided. The trailhead trail doesn't go directly to Baker Lake. We tried to head back to the trailhead after getting cached bags at Baker and we followed cairns that did not go back to the trail. We ended up getting lost and had to simply camp another night in the woods until the sun came up. We had to call Search and Rescue to ping our exact location and they said it is very common for people coming out of Baker Lake to miss the trail. Just made for an even funner memory. Make sure you properly find the trail if you head back via Baker Lake. This is a nice step up if your family has done some of the easier hikes around the area (such as Lolo Peak, St. Mary's and Cha Pa Quinn). Have fun!

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

It says it's easy but if you're older or have young kids this may be a little much. Steep in areas but short and sweet.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

This is one of the best short hikes I've ever done. The first half of the hike is very steep but after that it levels out for awhile. There is one final steep push right before the lake but isn't nearly as bad as the first part of the hike. The lake is gorgeous with a great view of Trapper Peak. We looped around the lake which had a trail that was easy to follow. Definitely recommend.

Tuesday, August 08, 2017

Easy and flat. Great for getting in your first hike of the summer to test the old body out.

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