Lower Mt. Ellis Trail

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Lower Mt. Ellis Trail

6 miles (round-trip)

Duration: 3 to 4 hours

Difficulty: Moderate

Elevation Gain: 2,400 feet

Activities: Hiking, running, mountain-biking, cross-country skiing

Crowds: Moderate traffic

The Lower Mt. Ellis trail begins by crossing a large open field with a steady incline (bikers, take note: it's a bit of a grunt). At the top of the field is treeline, where an old logging road takes you up and around to the east side of the mountain. After a couple miles and a few switchbacks, the logging road takes a hard left, and a single-track trail continues up the flank of the mountain—straight up, mind you. After gaining a knoll, the final ascent gets even steeper, eventually topping out on a limestone outcropping with sweeping views of Triple Tree below, the Gallatin Valley beyond, and mountain ranges in all directions. If you're not too pooped, continue south along the ridge to Mt. Ellis. 

Seasonal Conditions
Depending on snowpack, the trail can remain and wet and even snowy until mid-May or early June. It does tend to dry out before many other area trails, though. Lower Mt. Ellis is also a good trail for a winter outing on snowshoes or cross-country skis. 

Drive east on Kagy Blvd. until it becomes Bozeman Trail Rd. Turn right on Mt. Ellis Lane and drive south all the way to the gate denoting the recreation area.

Robert Stone's Lower Mt. Ellis Map

Map courtesy of Robert Stone's Day Hikes Around Bozeman, Montana.

Lower Mt. Ellis

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