Spots to Snowshoe Around Butte


A wintery trail among snow-covered trees, the rustling of birds in the brush: peace, serenity. That’s snowshoeing. The best part is you can get access to areas you otherwise would need to wait for spring’s thaw to see when you strap some snowshoes to your boots.

Even in late October and early April, you might be able to get a taste of winter recreation in Butte’s mountain weather, depending on what that year brings. It all depends on the conditions that day and that season. Always be sure to check the weather, be prepared, bring the 10 essentials, and practice Leave No Trace along your way as you head to these top spots to snowshoe around Butte.

Homestake Pass

The Continental Divide Trail passes through the mountains near Butte. In the summer, thru-hikers traverse the trail from Mexico to Canada. And in the winter, it remains as a winter recreation playground. Head to Homestake Pass, where you can purchase a day pass to enjoy the private groomed ski trails at Homestake Lodge—with rental gear available—or you can strike out on your own on nearby public land.

Maud S Canyon Trail

Our Lady of the Rockies watches over Butte, an impressive landmark to hike to. But if you don’t want to take the 13-mile round trip to the top of the continental divide, you can still take a beautiful walk overlooking Butte from the Maud S Canyon loop trail. It's not a guarantee that you’ll need snowshoes on this trail close to town, even in winter, but it’s a good idea to bring traction for your shoes either way.

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Thompson Park

Thompson Park, near and along the continental divide, uses old railroad tunnels and trestles as part of the trail, taking you high above the treetops as you make your way through the forest. Explore the 25 miles of trails in this municipal recreation area by foot, snowshoe, or fat tire bike in the winter.

Moulton Nordic Ski Trails

As with other cross-country ski areas, be sure to stay in the skate ski lane and off the set classic tracks at Moulton. Being respectful to other trail users is the name of the game, especially since these trails are groomed and maintained by volunteers. Trails wind through lodgepole pine forest, with plenty of loops to explore across over 12 miles of terrain not far from Uptown Butte.

Birch Creek Ski Trail

About 20 miles north of Dillon, the Birch Creek Ski Trail offers a difficult five-kilometer route for cross-country skiers and snowshoers. This trail is not groomed, and snowshoers should avoid walking on established ski tracks.

Lost Creek State Park

Outside of Anaconda, Lost Creek State Park closes its gates in winter, creating a peaceful walking area through the impressive limestone cliffs, along the creek, through the closed campground, and to a small waterfall. If you want to continue your walk, follow the Forest Service trail from the park boundary into the surrounding national forest, where you can walk for several miles.

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Mount Haggin Nordic Ski Area

Just 11 miles south of Anaconda, the Mount Haggin Nordic Ski Area holds trails open to skiers and snowshoers. Experience 25 kilometers of trails groomed weekly for Nordic skiers but open to snowshoe traffic as well. This area is not dog friendly, and snowshoers should make sure to stay to the edge of trails and off of ski tracks to respect skiers and keep winter recreation safe for everyone.

If you find yourself in Butte during that early or late season sweet spot for a stay at the Butte KOA Journey, you never know what the weather may bring. And with snowshoeing so close to town, you can get out there to enjoy an unexpected winter wonderland.