Recreation


Discover an Area by Activity

Select an activity to find an area to visit.

The Flathead National Forest contains three wilderness areas, two ski areas, impressive mountain ranges, lakes, wild and scenic rivers, campgrounds, picnic areas, and cabins. Hiking, wildlife viewing, whitewater rafting, snowmobiling, and skiing are just some activities enjoyed year-round. Whether you prefer the solitude of hiking in wilderness or the camaraderie found at popular boating and picnic areas, the Flathead National Forest offers a multitude of recreation opportunities for all.

Finding a Recreation Area or Activity

On our website, recreation opportunities are organized by districts or activity type. Note the area on our forest you'd like to stay or explore, under the right column heading 'Areas & Activities', 'Find an Area'  select the district that covers that area, then view/select the available recreation activities. Or, choose an activity under the Recreation heading on the left side of the web page and see where on the forest it is offered. Either way, we're sure you'll find exceptional recreation opportunities on the Flathead National Forest.

The District Vicinity Map displays the district boundaries, where they are located on the Flathead Forest, and their relation to surrounding forests and Northwestern Montana.

Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information

Recreation Conditions Report

Area Name Status Area Conditions
Anna Creek Cabin None For fee, reservation, and more information, visit Recreation.gov.
Ashley Lake North Campground None Weather dependent. For condition information call Tally Lake RD, 406-758-5204.
Ashley Lake South Campground None Weather dependent. For condition information call Tally Lake RD, 406-758-5204.
Beaver Creek Campground None For condition information call Spotted Bear RD, 406-758-5376.
Ben Rover Cabin Open For fee, reservation, and more information, visit Recreation.gov.
Big Creek Campground Open See conditions, fee, and location information: Flathead Valley Campgrounds (offsite link)
Challenge Cabin None For fee, reservation, and more information, visit Recreation.gov.
Devil Creek Campground None See conditions, fee, and location information: Flathead Valley Campgrounds (offsite link)
Devil's Corkscrew Campground None For condition information call Hungry Horse-Glacier View RD, 406-387-3800.
Doris Creek Campground None Closes 9/21/2021. Remains open to public with no services. Pack it in/Pack it out.
See conditions, fee, and location information: Flathead Valley Campgrounds (offsite link)
Doris Point Boating Site None See conditions, fee, and location information: Flathead Valley Campgrounds (offsite link)
Emery Bay Campground None Campground and gates close 9/22/2021.
See conditions, fee, and location information: Flathead Valley Campgrounds (offsite link)
Ford Cabin Open For fee, reservation, and more information, visit Recreation.gov.
Graves Creek Campground None For condition information call Hungry Horse-Glacier View RD, 406-387-3800.
Holland Lake Campground Open See conditions, fee, and location information: Flathead Valley Campgrounds (offsite link)
Hornet Lookout Cabin None For fee, reservation, and more information, visit Recreation.gov.
Lakeview Campground None For condition information call Hungry Horse-Glacier View RD, 406-387-3800.
Lid Creek Campground Open See conditions, fee, and location information: Flathead Valley Campgrounds (offsite link)
Lindbergh Lake Campground None For condition information call Swan Lake RD, 406-837-7500.
Lost Johnny Campground None See conditions, fee, and location information: Flathead Valley Campgrounds (offsite link)
Lost Johnny Point Campground None See conditions, fee, and location information: Flathead Valley Campgrounds (offsite link)
Mission Lookout Cabin Open For fee, reservation, and more information, visit Recreation.gov.
Moose Lake Campground None Access opening date varies. For condition information call Hungry Horse-Glacier View RD, 406-387-3800.
Murray Bay Campground None See conditions, fee, and location information: Flathead Valley Campgrounds (offsite link)
Ninko Cabin None For fee, reservation, and more information, visit Recreation.gov.
Owl Creek Cabin Open For fee, reservation, and more information, visit Recreation.gov.
Peter's Creek Campground None For condition information call Spotted Bear RD, 406-758-5376.
Red Meadow Lake Campground None Access opening date varies. For condition information call Hungry Horse-Glacier View RD, 406-387-3800.
Riverside Campground and Boating Site None See conditions, fee, and location information: Flathead Valley Campgrounds (offsite link)
Schnaus Cabin Open For fee, reservation, and more information, visit Recreation.gov.
Silvertip Cabin Rental Cabin None For fee, reservation, and more information, visit Recreation.gov.
Spotted Bear Campground None For condition information call Spotted Bear RD, 406-758-5376.
Star Meadow Guard Station Cabin Open For fee, reservation, and more information, visit Recreation.gov.
Summit Nature Center None Call 406-862-1972 for conditions and more information. Hours and open dates can be found at Whitefish Mountain Resort.
Swan Lake Campground Open See conditions, fee, and location information: Flathead Valley Campgrounds (offsite link)
Sylvia Lake Campground None For condition information call Tally Lake RD, 406-758-5204.
Tally Lake Campground Open See conditions, fee, and location information: Flathead Valley Campgrounds (offsite link)
Tuchuck Campground None Access opening date varies. For condition information call Hungry Horse-Glacier View RD, 406-387-3800.
Upper Stillwater Lake Campground None For condition information call Tally Lake RD, 406-758-5204.
Van Lake Campground and Day Use None For condition information, call the Swan Lake Ranger District at (406) 837-7500.
Wurtz Cabin Open For fee, reservation, and more information, visit Recreation.gov.
Zip's Place Cabin None For fee, reservation, and more information, visit Recreation.gov.

Spotlights

Summit Nature Center

This education and visitor information center is located at the summit of Big Mountain Whitefish Mountain Resort in the lower level of Summit House. The center can be accessed by purchasing a lift ticket at the resort or by hiking the Danny On Trail. The center has a wide variety of interpretive displays on wildlife, wildflowers, trees, fire ecology, and other topics that relate to the ecosystem of northwest Montana.

Summer

The center first opened in 1990 and today over 16,000 annual visitors enjoy center displays and hands-on activities.  During the summer there are daily wildflower and nature walks and families can check out an “Adventure Pack” filled with field guides and materials for fun outdoor exploring.  Kids aged 7-12 can participate in the Junior Forest Ranger program.

Winter

Group of young students gather on the snow with Forest Service guide to look at trackDuring the week school groups strap on snowshoes to explore the winter environment.  Younger grades learn how people and animals adapt to winter. Older grades learn how to enjoy the cold and snow and yet stay safe, learning about avalanches and ways to properly gear up for winter adventure.  Email Teresa Wenum for information about school field trips.

COVID-19 Update – center closed for the 2020-21 winter season.

Families and teachers: download the free Junior Snow Ranger book and check out the many fun indoor and outdoor activities.  Learn about what animals do in winter, snow safety, how to make your own snowshoes, what a real snow ranger does and much more.

Check out SnowSchool At Home activities for all grades, every week during the winter.  For those doing virtual school, online classroom or homeschooling, a corresponding activity/curriculum guide is provided

Recreation Areas

Highlights