The Bitterroot National Forest is located in western Montana.
Where is this Forest?

Sunset at Lake Como Lupine Big Horn Ram and Ewe Bitterroot flowers



Welcome to the Bitterroot National Forest

Leave your stress behind! You will find this spectacular 1.6 million acre forest in southwest Montana and Idaho to be a priceless national heritage. Half of the forest is dedicated to the largest expanse of continuous pristine wilderness in the lower 48 states -- the Selway Bitterroot, Frank Church River of No Return, and the Anaconda Pintler. Much of its beauty can be attributed to the heavily glaciated, rugged peaks of the Bitterroot Range. Drainages carved by glaciers form steep canyons that open into the valley floor. The abundance of natural resources offers a wide range of opportunities for recreation, grazing, wildlife, fisheries, timber, and minerals. Come enjoy the magnificent mountains, the serenity of wilderness, the miracle of spring flowers, majestic big game, and the sounds of birds here in our land of multiple uses.


"A beautiful flower, a beautiful river, a valley, a magnificent range - such is the Bitter Root" 

   - Wheeler, 1898 -

Roads Analysis Process

The Bitterroot National Forest is conducting an analysis of current national forest system roads. The roads analysis will identify risks and benefits of forest system roads as they pertain to safe and efficient travel and the protection, managment, and use of the national forest. The roads analysis process is a science-based approach used to inform future road-related travel management decisions. The roads analysis is not a proposal or decision, but helps inform the public about possible future road management planning. Before any projects are implemented on the ground the public will have an opportunity to comment through the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) process.

We need public input to help shape the analysis. The Forest has created an interactive online mapping tool to help interested members of the public of participate and submit input online.

Submit input online

Travel Management Planning

The Bitterroot National Forest Travel Management Planning Project Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) and Draft Record of Decision (Draft ROD) have been prepared. These documents are now available for a pre-decisional objection period and can be reviewed at the Stevensville, Darby, Sula and West Fork District Offices, the Supervisor’s Office and the public libraries in Stevensville, Hamilton, Darby, and Missoula.

Click here to go to the project documents and maps.

Recent News


Summer in the Bitterroot National Forest

Boy at Creek

Summer is a great time to visit the Bitterroot National Forest.  Recreation opportunities abound here including camping at 24 developed campgrounds and 5 groupsites, hiking on more than 1,600 miles of trails, fishing for brook and rainbow trout in crystal-clear Alpine lakes, boating, biking, horseback riding and more.

Discover the Bitterroot Store

Discover the Bitterroot Store

Looking for that unique outdoor or nature related gift?  Visit the Discover the Bitterroot store in the lobby of the Forest Service office in Hamilton.

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Discover the Bitterroot - Facebook

Stay in touch with the Bitterroot National Forest on Facebook!  Our Discover The Bitterroot page is full of photos, videos, weather and road reports, and much more. Check it out!

Four Rivers Lottery

The Main Salmon, Middle Fork of the Salmon, Selway, and Snake-Hells Canyon Rivers, located in central Idaho and eastern Oregon, offer a broad range of floating and recreation opportunities.


Bitterroot National Forest Native Plant and Pollinator Gardens

The next time you visit your local Ranger District on the Bitterroot National Forest, make sure you stop and enjoy our native plant and pollinator gardens.

Nez Perce National Historic Trail

The 1877 flight of the Nez Perce from their homelands while pursued by U.S. Army Generals Howard, Sturgis, and Miles, is one of the most fascinating and sorrowful events in Western U.S. history.<...

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Fire Danger Level: Very High


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Key Contacts

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