Bitterroot National Forest Guide

The Bitterroot National Forest is a 1,587,000-acre area in Montana's west-central region. About 50% of the forest includes sections of three wilderness areas — Anaconda-Pintler Wilderness, Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness, and Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness. The forest offers stunning views of mountains, deep valleys, and prairie lands where wildflowers blaze in color and wildlife flourishes. Bitterroot National Forest topography changes dramatically over short distances from 2,000 feet in elevation to 10,000 feet. The northern reaches of the forest are close to Missoula. The southern borders are near Hamilton, MT, and the west boundary, except for a small section in Idaho, is in the Bitterroot and Sapphire Mountain ranges.

Where to Camp

Camping in Bitterroot National Forest

RV Rentals Near Bitterroot National Forest

Shape Hiking Trails

Bitterroot National Forest Hiking Trails

Things to Do

Activities in Bitterroot National Forest

There is an easy way to determine the elevation when traveling through Bitterroot National Forest — observe the vegetation around you. The low-lying areas — 2,000 to 3,000 feet in elevation — are grasslands, often leased by local cattlemen for grazing rights. Between 3,000 and 8,000 feet, the Engelman Spruce and whitebark pine are prevalent. At 8,000 feet, the trees abruptly end, and wildflowers and hardy grasses take over and lay a curtain at the hips of the majestic rock heights that bloom with brilliant color in the spring.

map-marker-alt-regular How to Get There

How to get to Bitterroot National Forest

Address: 1801 North 1st, Hamilton, MT 59840

Fee: Entry fee $0

If you want to plan an unforgettable vacation, consider visiting Bitterroot National Forest. Taking your family on an RV trip through this forest, with its multidimensional topography, incredible wildlife, and colorful history is an adventure you and your kids will remember for a lifetime. So, find yourself an RV and start building those memories.

Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions About Bitterroot National Forest

What type of wildlife lives in Bitterroot National Forest?

Wildlife living in Bitterroot National Forest includes grizzly bears, timber wolves, bighorn sheep, mountain goats, elk, and deer. The forest is also home to a variety of birds and other small animals.

What is the closest town to Bitterroot National Forest?

One of the closest towns to Bitterroot National Forest is Hamilton, MT. Hamilton has plenty of restaurants, hotels, campgrounds, and stores where campers can restock or buy a souvenir to remind them of their trip.

Can you kayak, canoe, or raft in Bitterroot National Forest?

Yes, you can kayak, canoe, and raft in Bitterroot National Forest. The forest has plenty of lakes, rivers, and other bodies of water that are perfect for paddling. Several companies also offer rafting trips in the forest.

What is the best time to visit Bitterroot National Forest?

Summer is the best time to visit Bitterroot National Forest. The weather is warm and it's the perfect time for hiking, mountain biking, or a variety of activities on the water. The forest has plenty of lakes and streams for paddling, swimming, fishing, and more.

Is Bitterroot National Forest open all year round?

Yes, Bitterroot National Forest is open all year-round. Some areas of the forest, and some services, may be closed in winter due to snow. However, the forest is a popular spot for cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, snowmobiling, and other winter activities.