Western Wildlands

Our Public Lands

Rattlesnake National Recreation Area & Wilderness

The Rattlesnake National Recreation Area and Wilderness is a 60,000-acre wilderness complex to Missoula's north. The developed trails welcome a variety of hiking, backpacking, horseback riding, and bicycling opportunities.

Bob Marshall Wilderness Complex

The Bob Marshall Wilderness Complex is an administrated unit of the Flathead National Forest, the Lewis and Clark National Forest, Lolo National Forest, and the Helena National Forest. The United States Congress designated the Bob Marshall Wilderness Area as part of the original Wilderness Act of 1964 and it now encompasses over 1.5 million acres. Within this complex are three wildernesses: Bob Marshall, Scapegoat, and Great Bear.

Blackfoot River Corridor

Classic trout habitat and incredible scenery make the lower stretch of the Blackfoot River one of the most popular rivers in Montana. Fly fishing, camping, swimming, rafting, or relaxing are some of the things you may enjoy along the Blackfoot Corridor. The Corridor is a partnership between landowners, the Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife & Parks and the Bureau of Land Management, who all work together to provide protection of the natural resources and private property and provide public safety along the 26-mile stretch of river.

Clark Fork River

The river is named for William Clark during the expedition’s 1806 return trip from the Pacific Ocean. The Clark Fork River is well known for its diversity and the abundant variety of recreational opportunities it offers. Boating, swimming, fishing, kayaking, and skiing are just a few of the popular past times enjoyed by residents and visitors alike. And there’s nothing wrong with sitting back on a quiet evening and enjoying a beautiful sunset!

Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness

The third largest Wilderness in the Lower 48, it’s only separated by the 600 foot wide Nez Perce Trail from the Frank Church-River of No Return Wilderness. Except for the high crest of the Bitterroot Mountains, the area is dominated by ridges broken with raw granite peaks. Below the ridges are deep canyons covered with thick coniferous forest. Hidden low valleys are rich with old-growth cedar, fir, and spruce, with ponderosa pine dominating open grassy slopes along the rivers. Few people visit the remote areas in the wilderness, which makes it all the more appealing for the Selway elk herd, deer, moose, black bears, mountain lions, and wolves.  

Garnet Ghost Town

This well preserved ghost town offers a glimpse of life in an 1890s gold mining camp. The visitor center, open daily from June through September, has information about the 19th century life there. Winter access is only by snowmobile or skiing. Rental cabins are available.

Garnet National Winter Recreational Trails

More than 100 miles of trails, including the 32-mile Garnet National Winter Recreation Trail, wind through this popular winter sports area. Trails are open for snowmobiling and cross-country skiing.

Mountain Biking Trails

Mountain biking miles of exhilarating trails or cruising around town, you'll quickly discover why Missoula has been dubbed a gold level bike-friendly city. On any given day, you may well see more bikes locked up than cars downtown. Missoula's bicycle system includes more than 20 miles of bike lanes and routes on major streets. Head ten minutes from the heart of downtown and you can put yourself on a scenic slope surrounded by nothing but nature.

Rattler Gulch Limestone Cliffs

This unique area is valued by outdoor enthusiasts for its geology. Easy access to the cliffs and its geologic features make it a popular destination for rock climbers.

Missoula Trail System

Missoula Parks and Recreation is proud to serve the citizens of Missoula with quality recreation programs, well-maintained parks and trails, and an abundance of open space lands. Missoula boasts more than 400 acres of city parkland, 20,000 park and boulevard trees, 22 miles of trails, and 3,300 acres of conservation lands.