Lewis and Clark National Forest


Judith Mountains, Lewis and Clark National Forest
A view in the Judith Mountains on Lewis and Clark National Forest

Elevations across the Lewis & Clark National Forest vary from a low of about 4,500' to a high of 9,362' at the summit of Rocky Mountain Peak. The Forest is within the upper Missouri River system in central and north central Montana. More than 380,000 acres of the Forest are contained within the Bob Marshall-Great Bear-Scapegoat Wilderness Complex. There are two other Congressionally designated Wilderness Study Areas on the forest, one in the Little Belt Mountains and the other in the Big Snowy Mountains. Another 10,730 acres in the Forest are contained within various designated Research Natural Areas.

There are about 1,600 miles of perennial streams flowing in the Lewis & Clark National Forest but there are only a few small natural and man-made lakes on the forest. One stream is the Smith River, a nationally acclaimed blue ribbon trout stream with more than 20 miles of frontage on the Lewis & Clark. More than 60 streams have been shown to support populations of westslope cutthroat trout, an imperiled fish native to the Upper Missouri Basin.

The Lewis & Clark National Forest Headquarters is in Great Falls with local ranger district offices in Harlowton, Choteau, Stanford, White Sulphur Springs and Neihart. Among the seven mountain ranges that are part of the Forest are the Judith, Big Snowy, Castle, Crazy, Little Snowy, Highwood and Little Belt Mountains.

There are more than 1,500 miles of hiking and horseback riding trails on the Forest. You'll usually find the least people in the Crazy Mountains and in the wilderness areas along the Continental Divide. In the more exposed east-facing areas of the high mountains, snow can linger well into July.

View from high up looking across the Judith Mountains in Lewis & Clark National Forest
In the Judith Mountains
 
Photos of the Judith Mountains courtesy of the Bureau of Land Management
 

Campgrounds & Other Amenities

Jefferson Division Campgrounds

Campground Season # of Units Amenities
Aspen Summer/Fall 6 FeesDrinking WaterCampfires allowedPicnic areaRestroomsHandicapped accessibleFishing
6 miles west of Niehart
Crystal Lake Summer 28 FeesDrinking WaterCampfires allowedPicnic areaRestroomsFishingHiking trails
34 mi. SW of Lewistown, 32 mi. SE of Stanford, ice caves trailhead
Dry Wolf Summer 26 FeesDrinking WaterCampfires allowedPicnic areaRestroomsFishingHiking trails
20 mi. S of Stanford
Grasshopper Summer/Fall 12 FeesDrinking WaterCampfires allowedPicnic areaRestroomsFishingHiking trails
11 mi. SE of White Sulphur Springs
Hay Canyon All Year 9 Campfires allowedPicnic areaFishingHiking trails
19 mi. SW of Utica
Indian Hill All Year 7 Campfires allowedFishingHiking trails
27 mi. SW of Hobson
Jumping Creek Summer/Fall 15 FeesDrinking WaterCampfires allowedPicnic areaRestroomsHandicapped accessibleFishingHiking trails
22 mi. NE of White Sulphur Springs
Kings Hill Summer/Fall 18 FeesDrinking WaterCampfires allowedPicnic areaRestroomsHandicapped accessibleFishingHiking trailsMountain biking trails
9 mi. S of Neihart
Logging Creek Summer/Fall 26 FeesDrinking WaterCampfires allowedPicnic areaRestroomsHandicapped accessibleFishingHiking trails
15 mi. NW of Neihart
Many Pines Summer/Fall 23 FeesDrinking WaterCampfires allowedPicnic areaRestroomsHandicapped accessibleFishingHiking trailsMountain biking trails
4 mi. S of Neihart
Moose Creek Summer/Fall 6 Drinking WaterRestroomsFishing
27 mi. NW of White Sulphur Springs
Richardson Creek Summer/Fall 3 FishingHiking trails
12 mi. SE of White Sulphur Springs
Spring Creek Summer/Fall 10 FeesDrinking WaterCampfires allowedPicnic areaRestroomsHiking trails
38 mi. NW of Harlowton
Thain Creek Summer 20 FeesDrinking WaterCampfires allowedPicnic areaRestroomsFishingHiking trails
39 mi. E of Great Falls

Rocky Mountain Division

Campground Season # of Units Amenities
Benchmark Summer/Fall 25 FeesDrinking WaterCampfires allowedPicnic areaRestroomsFishingHiking trails
30 mi. W of Augusta; horse handling facilities, adjacent air strip, BMWC trailhead
Cave Mountain Summer/Fall 14 FeesDrinking WaterCampfires allowedPicnic areaRestroomsFishingHiking trails
28 mi. NW of Choteau; BMWC trailhead
Elko Summer/Fall 3 Campfires allowedPicnic areaRestroomsFishingHiking trails
31 mi. NW Choteau
Home Gulch Summer/Fall 15 FeesDrinking WaterCampfires allowedPicnic areaRestroomsHandicapped accessibleFishingHiking trails
20 mi. NW of Augusta; boat launch
Mill Falls Summer/Fall 4 Campfires allowedPicnic areaRestroomsFishingHiking trails
33.8 mi. NW of Choteau; waterfalls
Mortimer Gulch Summer/Fall 28 FeesDrinking WaterCampfires allowedPicnic areaRestroomsFishingHiking trails
26 mi. NW of Augusta; BMWC trailhead, primitive boat launch
South Fork Summer/Fall 7 FeesDrinking WaterCampfires allowedPicnic areaRestroomsHandicapped accessibleFishingHiking trails
31 mi. W of Augusta; BMWC trailhead
Summit Summer 17 FeesDrinking WaterCampfires allowedPicnic areaRestroomsHandicapped accessibleHiking trails
12 mi. W of East Glacier; telephone, Continental Divide trailhead, historical site
West Fork Summer/Fall 6 FeesDrinking WaterCampfires allowedPicnic areaRestroomsFishingHiking trails
39 mi. NW of Choteau; BMWC trailhead
Wood Lake Summer 9 FeesDrinking WaterCampfires allowedPicnic areaRestroomsFishingHiking trails
24 mi. NW of Augusta; canoeing, swimming