Elevation Gain: 20 ft.8. Emerald Lake and Heather LakeStarting with a few miles of gradual climbing and ending with a series of switchbacks, this makes for a moderately challenging hike with a rewarding view at the top.The journey is worth it as you have a chance to take in the beauty of two crystal-clear alpine lakes, (you’ll encounter Emerald Lake first).The views are unbeatable as Emerald Lake is surrounded by rugged peaks – they’re truly sights to behold. Take your fishing pole along as this lake is also a great fishing location. If you wish to discover another breathtaking destination, take the extra mile past Emerald Lake and you’ll arrive at Heather Lake which offers more solitude and spectacular views.If you choose to hike this in the summer, make sure to pack bug spray. Also, give yourself a good amount of the day to complete this hike as you’ll want time to enjoy the destination.With a combination of mountain views, alpine lakes, wildflowers, and meadows, this path makes for some of the best hiking near Bozeman.Trail Details and InformationHere are some important things to know about this hike in Bozeman.Location: 50 minutes south of Bozeman / AllTrails linkLength: 10.5 miles/16.9 kmDuration: 5 hr 20 minutesType of Trail: Out & BackElevation Gain: 2,165 ft.9. Palisade FallsChampagne Falls isn’t your only option for a waterfall hike near Bozeman. Palisade Falls is located 40 minutes south of Bozeman and is known to be an easy and family-friendly trail.The trail is located in the Hyalite Recreation Area and is a great trail to escape the summer heat. Not only is your destination a waterfall, but you’ll be spoilt with a stream that follows the trail the entire way. The destination is a bridge that faces the impressive Palisade Falls which cascade down around 80 ft.This short, paved, and shaded trail is an ideal choice for families and those who want to adventure with their dogs.Trail Details and InformationHere are some important things to know about this hike in Bozeman.Location: 40 minutes southeast of Bozeman / AllTrails linkLength 1.1 miles/1.8 kmDuration: 35 minutesType of Trail: Out & BackElevation Gain: 240 ft.10. Baldy Peak MountainIf you’re looking for a challenging mountain summit, Baldy Peak is the trail for you. One way up to the summit is 4.5 miles and just over 4,000 ft. of elevation. These stats mean you must carve out plenty of time to make the steep trek up.The hike to the top includes passing through covered forested areas and also hiking along an exposed ridge beyond the tree line. The ridge can experience harsh winds and sun exposure so it’s important to pack adequate sun protection and layers for the cold breeze.We made an attempt at the Baldy Peak Summit for our first hike when we arrived in Bozeman. It was definitely a lung-buster! It took us around 4 hours to complete.If you want an amazing workout paired with great panoramic views, this is for you. We brought 3 liters of water each along with a full lunch and used all of the provisions we brought.Summiting Baldy Peak would make for a rewarding experience during your time in Bozeman.Trail Details and InformationHere are some important things to know about this hike in Bozeman.Location: 10 minutes northeast of Bozeman / AllTrails linkLength: 9.6 miles/15.5 kmDuration: 7.5 hoursType of Trail: Out & BackElevation Gain: 4,330 ft.11. Sypes CanyonThe Sypes Canyon Trail gives you the magical chance to take in the views of the Bridger Mountain Range. Even better, the trailhead sits just 15 minutes north of downtown Bozeman; making it accessible and popular for locals and visitors alike.In the spring you’ll see plenty of wildflowers and in the fall you’ll experience a variety of autumnal colors. If you hike in the summer, you’ll have plenty of shade and chances to cool off in the creeks that pass by the trail. Expect to share the trail with other hikers, horseback riders, and mountain bikers.The moderate elevation gain of this hike still means it’s family-friendly. No matter who you’re with, make sure to remember your bear spray as bears are frequently spotted in the area.Trail Details and InformationHere are some important things to know about this hike in Bozeman.Location: 15 minutes north of Bozeman / AllTrails linkLength 6.2 miles/10 kmDuration: 3.5 hoursType of Trail: Out & BackElevation Gain: 1, 620 ft.12. Lava LakeIf you’re willing to drive 30 minutes south of Bozeman into the Gallatin Gateway, I highly suggest hiking to Lava Lake. I struggle to decide if Beehive Basin or Lava Lake is my favorite hike in the Bozeman area – I’ll let you discover for yourself!Lava Lake is a moderate 6-mile trail with a beautiful alpine lake as its ending destination. The elevation gain along the way is consistent and steady but very doable for those in decent shape.As you make your way up towards the lake, you’ll hike through the dense and lush forest; even crossing some different streams and creeks on bridges.As we were hiking along, the vegetation was packed in around us. It felt as if we were hiking in Washington or British Columbia. We knew open landscapes were going to meet us at the top so we appreciated the chance to around at all of the unique plant life on the way up.Once you finally arrive at the lake, the view opens up to the surrounding Spanish Peaks. We found a rock along the shore, put our feet in the water, and took in the surrounding views. The snow on the mountain peaks provides a great contrast.Since we did it in early July we were worried about bugs, but they were never an issue. We ate our lunch in peace and quiet and quickly made the trek back down to our parked car. The steady incline makes the descent quite easy.The water is crystal-clear, and we were able to spot some trout swimming through the shallows. This is a great hike for those who enjoy fishing in alpine lakes.Pack a lunch and plenty of snacks to enjoy at the top. You deserve to take it all in after climbing all the way up!Trail Details and InformationHere are some important things to know about this hike in Bozeman.Location: 30 minutes southwest of Bozeman / AllTrails linkLength 6 miles/9.6 kmDuration: 3.5 hoursType of Trail: Out & BackElevation Gain: 1,620 ft.13. Sacagawea PeakThe hike to the top of Sacagawea Peak is not for the faint of heart. Being the tallest peak in the Bridger Mountains, I can assure you that you’ll finish this hike with a feeling of great accomplishment.Not only does the hike test the savviest of hikers, but the road getting to the trailhead also requires some skill, (and ideally a 4WD).For many, the 2,000 ft. climb over just 2 miles of trail is worth it. At the top, you’ll get to take in views of The Crazy Mountains, Tabacco Root Mountains, The Spanish Peaks, and the rest of The Bridger Mountains.The actual journey up to Sacagawea Peak begins in a forested area, transitions into large meadows, and finishes up with some tight switchbacks and challenging climbs.Make sure to pack plenty of food and water, a jacket to weather the strong winds, and hiking poles to navigate the switchbacks and tough climbs.Trail Details and InformationHere are some important things to know about this hike in Bozeman.Location: 50 minutes north of Bozeman / AllTrails linkLength 5.2 miles/8.4 kmDuration: 3.5 hoursType of Trail: Out & BackElevation Gain: 2,000 ft.14. Hyalite PeakHyalite Peak Trail can best be described as a long and challenging journey with rewarding views at the end. The trailhead is a 40-minute drive from Bozeman but is a popular trail for those looking for a challenging hike in the area.Along the way, you can expect the hike to start with four miles through dense pine forest. Along the way, you’ll encounter about 10 mini waterfalls and several creeks.The creeks sometimes have bridges and sometimes require you to cross them on your own. I’d consider taking an extra pair of socks and/or hiking poles to make the creek crossings more manageable.As you continue on towards Hyalite Peak, you’ll experience meadows, shots of craggy peaks, and views of Hyalite Canyon. At the top, you’ll encounter Hyalite Lake surrounded by impressive mountains.This challenging hike finishes out above 10,000 ft. and is guaranteed to both wipe you out, and offer you some of the most wonderful views in the area.Trail Details and InformationHere are some important things to know about this hike in Bozeman.Location: 40 minutes south of Bozeman / AllTrails linkLength 14.5 miles/23.3 kmDuration: 7.5-8 hoursType of Trail: Out & BackElevation Gain: 3,850 ft.15. Sourdough TrailIf you’re looking for an easy, family-friendly hike around Bozeman, head to the Sourdough Creek Nature Trail. Located just a few minutes away from downtown, this 2.5-mile out and back trail makes for a great place to explore during a morning or afternoon in Bozeman.The gravel nature trail is 8 ft. wide and provides many benches along the way to rest and take in the surrounding beauty. This trail could also be accessible for strollers or those in wheelchairs, (depending on the wheel types).Consider making a stop at Sourdough Trail during your next outdoor Bozeman adventure.Trail Details and InformationHere are some important things to know about this hike in Bozeman.Location: Minutes from downtown / AllTrails linkLength (list in both miles/kilometers) 2.5 miles/4 kmDuration: 45 minutesType of Trail: Out & BackElevation Gain: 65 ft.Where to Stay in BozemanThese are a few of the best neighborhoods and areas in and around Bozeman.Downtown BozemanIf you prefer to stay in the heart of a city close to restaurants, breweries, shops, and nightlife, staying in downtown Bozeman is the best option for you.Staying downtown still provides a great home base for your outdoor adventures as you don’t have to travel far outside of the city to get your hiking, biking, fishing, or skiing fix.On one of our visits to Bozeman, we stayed downtown right above a few restaurants which was great! After a nice dinner, we were able to walk a few blocks and head to bed.Check out this newly-built condo downtown that’s within walking distance to the heart of downtown. Take in the surrounding mountain views from your private deck and balcony, and either explore the restaurant scene or cook in the fully-stocked kitchen.If you love whiskey as much as you love walking, I recommend trying out this whiskey bar and grill – Copper – offering favorites such as brisket sandwiches and burgers to suitably refuel after your adventures.West BozemanOver the past few years, West Bozeman has been growing and developing. People describe it as “Small town charm. Big sky living.” This area of Bozeman is family-friendly and full of a variety of duplexes, townhomes, and single-family homes. The west side of Bozeman also offers new parks, an extensive trail system, and some lovely lakes.This modern condo in west Bozeman is brand new and in a prime location for most activities. The 3 bedroom, 2.5 bath condo is only 10 minutes from downtown and has walking and biking trails right from the front door. Consider booking this location for a quieter place to return to after a busy day of exploring.Bridger CanyonThe Bridger Canyon neighborhood in Bozeman, MT, is full of some of the finest homes in the area. Bridger Canyon is a prime area to stay in because of its location near local hiking trails and the national forest. Additionally, Bridger Canyon is home to the Bridger Bowl Ski Area and Crosscut Mountain Sports Center for cross-country skiing.We stayed in the Bridger Canyon area in an effort to be close to skiing in the winter as well as hiking in the summer. It gave us the peace and quiet we desired but also put us close enough to town to experience all the restaurants and nightlife.If you’re looking for a unique and cozy place to stay in this area, check out this 2 bedroom, 1 bathroom peaceful mountain hideaway. Consider booking this peaceful hideaway to be in an ideal location for the mountains, hiking, and downtown.Hiking in Bozeman: FAQsHere are some answers to commonly asked questions about hiking around Bozeman.What is the most popular hike in Bozeman?The most popular hike in Bozeman is the College “M” Trail. Located just 5 miles from downtown and only 2 miles in length, this trail is popular for locals getting in their morning workout or for visitors who want to climb up to the iconic “M.”What is the easiest hike around Bozeman?The easier hike in Bozeman is found in Glen Lake Rotary Park. The public park consists of a lake, sandy beaches, and a family-friendly trail system. The path is flat and the largest loop you can create is 3 miles.Are there any waterfall trails in Bozeman?There are many options to see waterfalls along the trails in Bozeman. Two popular hikes with prominent waterfalls are Palisade Falls and Champagne Falls.What should I wear when hiking in Bozeman?No matter what the season, it’s important to hike in layers. You never know when the weather will shift in the mountains and the higher you get, the windier and chillier it gets. I also recommend you wear a strong pair of sturdy hiking shoes or boots to best navigate the climbs.What is the most beautiful trail in Bozeman?The Emerald Lake and Heather Lake Trail offer some of the most beautiful views in the Bozeman area. On this hike, you’ll see impressive mountain vistas, fields of wildflowers, and a destination of rugged peaks towering over clear alpine lakes.Is hiking in Bozeman dangerous?Hiking in Bozeman can be dangerous if you’re not well-equipped with proper gear. It’s important to hike with hiking shoes and hiking poles for the steeper and more exposed trails. It’s also always a good idea to carry bear spray as grizzlies and black bears frequent the surrounding areas. Never forget plenty of water and food.ConclusionAs mentioned earlier, you can’t go wrong when choosing between any of the many hikes available in and around Bozeman. Whether you want to start getting into hiking or you’re an experienced adventurer, Bozeman is a great destination for you.Grab the bear spray, put on the hiking boots, pack some layers and you’re all set to take in the beauty of the mountains, lakes, meadows, and forests.Like This Article? Pin it!Disclaimer: Goats On The Road is an Amazon Associate and also an affiliate for some other retailers. This means we earn commissions if you click links on our blog and purchase from those retailers.


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