Backpack West Fork - Lake Fork of Rock Creek Trail

19 Miles Round Trip - Point-to-Point Trail

West Fork Trailhead - Search Nearby - Added by Aaron Selig

Take in some of the best views Montana has to offer. Hike all the way up to 11,000 feet atop Sundance Pass and enjoy an epic panoramic view of the Beartooths. The Absaroka-Beartooth Wilderness is home to 30 12,000 foot peaks and is part of the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem.

Start out at the West Fork trailhead west of Red Lodge and begin on an epic backpacking trip. This trek can easily be done anywhere from 2-5 days depending on ability and whether or not you want to take your time.

Camp first at Quinnebaugh Meadows, a large meadow with great views of the Beartooth Mountains and especially Whitetail Mountain to the southwest. Then head on to Shadow Lake, a small pristine lake at the foot of Castle Mountain and Whitetail Mountain. Also consider checking out Silt Lakes, a small scramble up from Shadow Lake. Then after Shadow Lake and the pack bridge is Sundance Pass. Sundance Pass starts at the bottom of the valley and gains 1,500ft elevation in a fairly short distance with 57 switchbacks going straight up the mountainside reaching 11,000ft. The views at the top are absolutely breathtaking and a perfect spot to hang out and eat lunch. It is also a popular spot to head off the trail and get even deeper into the AB Wilderness.Then drop down the pass and camp out at September Morn Lake, a beautiful deep blue lake with cliffs jutting up just off shore and a waterfall coming in and going out on either side of the lake. For your last night you can camp at Lost Lake, Black Canyon Lake or Keyser Brown Lake. All offer stunning mountain views. Then hike out to the Lake Fork trailhead a few miles south of Red Lodge.

Don't forget to keep an eye out for wildlife as bears and moose are very common for hikers to see. Mountain Goats can also be seen from a distance climbing along cliffs. Many of the lakes in the Beartooths have fish in them along with the creeks, so make sure to bring your fishing gear!

Make sure to stop into Red Lodge Ales before leaving town for a well deserved brew! Also consider traveling the Beartooth Pass to Cooke City for an epic drive through the mountains.

Tags

Camping
Fishing
Photography
Backpacking
Hiking
Forest
Lake
River
Scenic
Waterfall
Wildflowers
Wildlife
Swimming Hole

Details

19 Miles
Point-to-Point Trail

Stay Nearby

Red Lodge, Montana

Red Lodge KOA

Cody, Wyoming

Quick Lake Sunset View Camp

From $100/night

Cody, Wyoming

Cody KOA

Greycliff, Montana

Big Timber / Greycliff KOA

Nearby Adventures

Backpack Granite Peak

14 Miles Round Trip

Backpack to Rainbow Lake via the East Rosebud Trail

16 Miles Round Trip - 1600 ft gain

Backpack to the Beartooths

14 Miles Round Trip - 7620 ft gain

Backpack to Golden & Jasper Lakes in the Beartooths

14 Miles Round Trip - 1000 ft gain

More Nearby Adventures

Reviews

Leave a Review

Overall rating:  Rate this Adventure

Have you done this adventure? Leave a review!

Discover your #MontanaMoment

Montana is easy to get to, and hard to leave. It's the backdrop to your adventures — mountains and valleys, bears and bison, waterfalls and trout streams — all of it will simply leave you in awe. Check out more at VISITMT.COM