Hornet Lookout Cabin

Exterior of the Hornet Lookout Rental Cabin

Hornet Lookout is available mid-June to October annually. Hornet Lookout is 45 miles north of Columbia Falls. It was built in 1922 and was an integral part of the chain of lookouts providing forest fire detection in the North Fork. Hornet Lookout is a rustic lookout with an approximate 1-mile hike in the summer from the trailhead. Hornet has rustic accommodations with a propane cook stove & lantern, small wood stove for heat, and a pit toilet. Renters should pack their own bedding, water, and can gather firewood in the area. Hornet's party size is 2 with cots. The area burned during the 2003 Wedge Fire and is coming back with wildflowers and bear grass. Glacier National Park and the Wild and Scenic North Fork of the Flathead River are nearby. Sometimes the Northern Lights make an appearance. Commercial use of the cabins is prohibited (outfitter guides, groups or organizations with compensated leaders/chaperones). Dogs are allowed, please pick up after your pet.

Hornet Lookout

Mountain View

Inside view

Kitchen table

Sleeping area

Ladder to Lookout

Wood Burning Stove


Fire ring

At a Glance

Current Conditions: For fee, reservation, and more information, visit Recreation.gov.
Reservations: This site can be reserved by calling Toll Free 1-877-444-6777 (International 518-885-3639 or TDD 877-833-6777) or on-line at Recreation.gov.
Fees: For fee information, visit Recreation.gov
Open Season: Mid-June
Usage: Light
Closest Towns: Polebridge
Water: No
Restroom: Pit Toilet
Operated By: Forest Service

General Information

Directions: Take County Road 486 the North Fork Road for 45 miles north from Columbia Falls. To find the North Fork Road take Nucleus Avenue north through Columbia Falls, turn east on Railroad Street at the stop sign, this becomes the North Fork Road as it travels over the railroad overpass. Turn west on Whale Creek Road #318 approximately 4 miles, turn north on Hornet Road #9805 5.2 miles to the trailhead of Hornet Trail #349, hike about a mile to the lookout. Use caution, Road #9805 is narrow with a few pullouts,see map.

Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information


Cabin Rentals

Related Information

Recreation Areas

Recreation Activities


  • Current alerts and closures
  • Bear Safety and Food storage
  • Get a Map
  • Find out if you need a permit


  Latitude : 

  Longitude :