Plains/Thompson Falls Ranger District

Located in the northwest corner of the Lolo National Forest, the Plains/Thompson Falls Ranger District borders Idaho to the west, the Kootenai National Forest to the north and the Flathead Indian Reservation to the east. The district covers over 490,000 acres of mountainous terrain, offers stunning scenery, abundant wildlife and a wealth of outdoor recreational opportunities. World class hunting opportunities exist for bighorn sheep, elk and deer, and the fishing is renowned for prized trout species such as cutthroat, bull and rainbow trout, and northern pike. The Clark Fork River and tributaries Thompson River and Prospect Creek are the district’s major watersheds. Thompson Falls and Plains -- where the Plains/Thompson Falls Ranger District Office is located -- are the two major communities adjacent to the district.

Rich in western Montana history, the Plains/Thompson Falls District was once home to David Thompson, one of this country’s most famous explorers and a prodigious mapmaker. The local Native Americans called Thompson Koo-Koo-Sint, which roughly translates into “Star Gazer,” due to the fact that he often studied the night sky with his sextant. He remains famous for the accurate maps he produced of this once uncharted territory. A prominent ridge between Thompson River and the Clark Fork is now named Koo-Koo-Sint Ridge in Thompson’s honor. Thompson Falls, also named for our most famous early resident, later became the location of the old Cabinet National Forest's Supervisor’s Office. The district has an abundance of breathtaking destinations with slightly mysterious names, mostly accessible by a well-maintained trail system or by mountain roads. Baldy Mountain, Thompson Peak, Mount Headley, Sundance Ridge, Eddy Mountain, Priscilla Peak, Blossom Lakes, Cabin Lake and Cherry Peak are just a few!

Plains/Thompson Falls Ranger District Recreation Information

Contact Information for All Lolo National Forest Offices

Map of the Plains/Thompson Falls Ranger District