There are over 1,500 mapped hikes in Montana. It doesn’t matter what kind of terrain you love to wander in, Montana has you covered. From steep mountain trails leading to ice-cold high-altitude lakes to the wide-open spaces of the Rosebud Battlefield state park. Montana has a hiking trail for you, you and a partner, or you and the whole family.

A tremendous resource if you are looking for hikes across our state, (and beyond) is It shows hike lengths, difficulty, altitude gains, hike types, and whether or not you can have dogs. It’s pretty cool.

Most ‘well-known’ hikes, or most coveted in Montana are in our National Parks, Glacier and Yellowstone, to no one’s surprise. I thought I would highlight one hike in each of the parks, then break out and look at a few others around Montana.

So let’s do this.

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GLACIER NATIONAL PARK, MONTANA - (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

We have to start in Glacier, don’t we? Let’s look at the Avalanche Lake hike. The trail into Avalanche Lake is just under 6 miles long, gaining 750 feet of elevation, and taking 2.5 to 3 hours to complete. This is a family-friendly trail, BUT not a dog-friendly hike, so leave Spot at home. Take a look through the pictures of this hike HERE, the views are bonkers.

Yellowstone shows 267 active trails. A large percentage of the known hikes in Yellowstone are under 2 miles, and usually very crowded. How about a bit longer, and more challenging hike? Yellowstone Falls, Crystal Falls, and Inspiration Point via the North Rim Trail is one you should check out. It clocks in at 6.4 miles, gaining 675 feet of elevation, and again with spectacular views, look at some pics HERE. This is a popular trail, so you will see people, but not remotely close to the throngs of folks you will see on the boardwalks.

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YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK, (Photo by George Frey/Getty Images)

Let’s head north on Yellowstone for our third stop, the Storm Castle Peak hike, south of Bozeman. This is a popular hike with spectacular views at the top of the climb. It is our first hike that is dog friendly, but also very popular so keep an eye on your pup. The hike is in the Custer Gallatin National Forest, and is listed as HARD, it will leave you breathless. Gaining 1860 feet of elevation over it’s 5.2 miles, it will take 3.5 to 4 hours to complete. But again, the views are worth it, take a look at some pictures HERE.

Heading west from Bozeman, our fourth stop is the Maud S. Canyon loop in Butte America. To say the Maud S. is close to Butte is an understatement. Many of its ‘regular’ hikers walk to the trailhead from their homes. Maud S. is a 4-mile loop, considered a moderate challenge. It gains 994 feet of elevation over its length, offering outstanding views of the Butte Valley. The loop will generally take 2.5 hours to complete, and even when the trail is busy, you will have quite a bit of solitude. Dogs are welcome on a leash.

Maud. S. Canyon. Butte
Maud. S. Canyon. Butte

For our final jaunt, let’s head east, to Hungry Joe Trail, located in Makoshika State Park just south of Glendive. This hike is considered a moderately challenging hike, covering 4.6 miles, and gaining 633 feet of elevation. Again the views on this hike are amazing, you can view some HERE. Reading comments, it looks like you want to pay attention on this hike, as some folks have noted it’s hard to find the trail at times.

So, there’s a look at 5 different hikes in this great state of ours, once you get those done, that only leaves you with 1,511 left to do.

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