Return to the trailhead by retracing your steps back down the same trail. Some popular destinations are Lightning Lake, Cave Lake, the Hidden Lakes (Gallatin Range) and the Golden Trout Lakes. hiking). It was difficult driving up the road to get to the beginning of the trail, so I recommend a vehicle that can handle the rough road; preferably a truck or AWD. Location: Portal Creek, Gallatin Canyon, Gallatin Range The Golden Trout Lakes trail (Trail #89) is located up Portal Creek in the Gallatin Canyon near Big Sky. Golden trout are most often found in remote, alpine drainages over 9,000 feet in elevation. Stay left for Golden Trout Lakes Trail. Four buddies hiked to Cave Lake, MT in hope of catching Golden Trout. Mountain Projects – Lists And Maps For Peakbaggers, Mountain Quotes To Inspire & Motivate You, Sphinx Mountain – 10,876′ – Madison Range – Montana, Alternativa Media Presents 7 Years – A Timelapse Film 4K, Outdoor Research Presents How To Set Up A Top Rope Anchor On Two Bolts, REI Presents What To Do In A Bear Encounter (And How To Avoid One), Cody Townsend Presents The Fifty – 1: Intro & Messner Couloir, Watch The Winning Runs From The Freeride World Tour 2019 – Ordino Arcalis Andorra. With multiple peaks over 12,000 ft. elevation and hundreds of backcountry lakes, the Beartooth Wilderness/ mountain range is a premier destination for incredible high alpine lake fishing. Head left and continue for 3 miles to the Upper Portal Creek Trailhead. Learn more here. Time: 2.5 to 3 hours The road in is not well marked. USGS Map: Hidden Lake, Lone Indian Peak. Hebgen Lake is a special trout fishery. There are actually 3 lakes in the area. If you haven’t been yet, be sure to go here. First stocked in 1938, the golden trout at Sylvan Lake are well known in Montana for their genetic purity. The road is not in the best shape. The Montana Golden Trout at 10,000 feet above sea level in Sylvan Lake showed a marked preference for dry flies while we were there, while those Brook Trout in nearby Crow Lake at an even higher elevation preferred cone-headed wooly buggers. A quick lap around Golden Trout Lakes is about 0.3 miles. The dirt road follows Portal Creek. Golden Trout Lakes is a water feature in Montana and has an elevation of 9078 feet. Be sure to enjoy the spectacular views, take a dip in the deep, chilly, clear alpine water, and appreciate the silence of Golden Trout Lakes. The lakes are filled with crystal clear mountain water. The Golden Trout Lakes trail (Trail #89) is located up Portal Creek in the Gallatin Canyon near Big Sky. The golden trout populations started from the Sur- prise Lake stock had a low occurrence of the variant allele. Stay right at the first fork. And the hike itself is pretty easy. Let the world see your experience through your eyes. The trailhead serves double duty as it's the jumping off place for two trails. The Golden Trout Lakes fishing map contains information about some of the best fishing spots this lake has to offer as well as the nearby cottages, campgrounds, and bait and tackle shops. In early July 2012, my mom and I headed up into the Gallatin Mountains for our next hiking adventure: Golden Trout Lakes. I believe that the roundtrip distance is a little off compared to this site in my opinion, but I totally recommend this hike to anyone. I began researching golden trout, and I learned it was native to the Sierras in California. Goldens had also, however, been stocked in certain alpine lakes … The Golden Trout Wilderness is a federally designated wilderness area in the Sierra Nevada, in Tulare County and Inyo County, California.It is located 40 miles (64 km) east of Porterville, California within Inyo National Forest and Sequoia National Forest.. Once you get to the beginning of the trail, the hike is a nice little workout until you reach the final location of Golden Trout Lakes. As always in SW Montana, be bear aware. Yikes! To get to Golden Trout Lakes, head north out of Big Sky on highway 191 for 5.1 miles. The golden trout is a California species that was introduced in Montana in 1907. It is 303,511 acres (1,228.3 km 2) in size and was created by the US Congress in 1978 as part of the National Wilderness Preservation System. There are several small stream crossings that are easy to rock hop across. They provide a unique opportunity to catch a beautiful fish in a pristine environment. Once you get to the beginning of the trail, the hike is a nice little workout until you reach the final location of. Here's a look at some excellent Montana Brook Trout we tracked down last summer. All waters on the Kern Plateau are open to angling, although many are accessible only by trail since both watersheds are largely encompassed within the Golden Trout … Rough roads to the Golden Trout Lakes It was difficult driving up the road to get to the beginning of the trail, so I recommend a vehicle that can handle the rough road; preferably a truck or AWD. You might also find goldens scattered around in few other lakes, but they are not as widespread as many species of trout in Montana. You see lots of wildflowers in. Golden Trout in Montana? Golden Trout Lakes trail is a 5 mile out and back hike to a beautiful alpine lake in the Gallatin Range of SW Montana. Golden Trout Lakes Elevation: 9075 feet Here Ben Bailey, a Fisheries Technician whose spent the last 15 years surveying hundreds, and almost all, the Absaroka-Beartooth Wilderness lakes, describes Montana’s Golden Trout program. Finally it was time to wet a line in search for the fish of a lifetime, and soon I would be actually fishing for golden trout. Sorry, there are no tours or activities available to book online for the date(s) you selected. Once you get to the beginning of the trail, the hike is a nice little workout until you reach the final location of Golden Trout Lakes. Currently, Story meets all of Wyoming’s requests for golden trout and ships excess eggs to Colorado, Utah, Idaho, Montana, Washington, and California. Golden Trout Lakes is a lake located just 11.9 miles from Big Sky, in Gallatin County, in the state of Montana, United States, near George Norman Trailer Court, MT. https://www.alltrails.com/trail/us/montana/golden-trout-lakes Fly-fishing for golden trout is a time-consuming, obsession-creating adventure of a time. Derek Lennon is a skier and writer who lives, works, and plays in the mountains. We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. Please choose a different date. There are a couple of lakes in Montana's Pioneer Mountains below 8,000 feet where FWP has decided to stock golden trout every six years (only once, in 2014, so far). 3. Like a Peacock and a Goldfish Combined in a Dream, Simply Beautiful! Head south out of the parking lot toward a log fence on an old logging road to access the Golden Trout Lakes trail. Sylvan Lake’s golden population is so pure that the Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife, and Parks regularly uses the eggs laid by goldens at Sylvan Lake for stocking other lakes in Montana. Thanks! If you continue to use this site we will assume that you are happy with it. The Wyoming Game and Fish Department manages 133 high, alpine lakes for golden trout. _________________________________________________________. To access the trail head, turn east onto Portal Creek Road #984 and continue southeast for 6.8 miles. Golden Trout Lakes trail is a 5 mile out and back hike to a beautiful alpine lake in the Gallatin Range of SW Montana. Golden Trout Creek is a designated Heritage and Wild Trout Water. To get to Golden Trout Lakes, head north out of Big Sky on highway 191 for 5.1 miles. Copyright © 2018 A Mountain Journey LLC. Total Elevation Gain : 1300 ft Multiple Montana’s state record golden trout weighing around 5 pounds have been taken from Lightning Lake over the years. Like elsewhere in Montana, some of the Absaroka-Beartooth’s roughly 300 trout lakes produce trout naturally and some are … You will need decent clearance on your vehicle to make it up this rocky road as it is easy to bottom out. The lakes were just gorgeous and we even fished for a bit. Not too strenuous, and a beautiful lake at the end, This is a less busy trail in the area, probably due to the 6 mile dirt road drive on the way in. (Hiking) Golden Trout Lakes, Near Big Sky, Montana By danwgoodman on June 27, 2012 • ( 3 Comments ) Stifling heat and choking smoke may define the legacy of Montana’s 2012 summer, but the state’s high altitude mountain lakes have so far remained havens for outdoor seekers of … _________________________________________________. Upper Portal Creek Trailhead Elevation: 8058 feet This is the version of our website addressed to speakers of English in the United States. Make sure to have a bit of clearance on your car for the drive to the trailhead. The first twenty years of my brook trout fishing career where spent happily catching dozens of fish in Montana’s streams and lakes. The Golden Trout lakes offer a scenic getaway just out of the Gallatin Valley Canyon. Author and a beautiful Golden Trout! In Montana, that's not terribly difficult through the MFISH database. Golden Trout Lakes is an absolutely picture perfect, hidden gem in the Gallatin Range of Montana. The road is in rough condition and is better suited for vehicles with a higher clearance. Golden trout find conditions in those high, cold lakes to be just what they like, and there are good numbers of them in some lakes. Caught fish, saw lots of wildlife, and had a good time; with some CRAZY surprises. Distance: 5 miles round trip The South Fork Kern River is a designated Wild Trout Water. Begin your search here. It’s a good idea to download Topo Maps for this hike because Golden Trout Lakes is located on the very corner of the Lone Indian Peak USGS Quad map. This is actually a collection of three lakes, though we just went to the main one. One to the east and a smaller one to the west. We hiked through so many river crossings and passed around high mountain lakes with great cutthroat and brook trout fishing to reach our target destination. Golden Trout Lakes from Mapcarta, the free map. One accesses Windy Pass (a nice hike in it's own right), the other heads off to the Golden Trout Lakes. Hebgen Lake. Lovely hike!! Rough roads to the Golden Trout Lakes It was difficult driving up the road to get to the beginning of the trail, so I recommend a vehicle that can handle the rough road; preferably a truck or AWD. If you’ve already been, go again because it’s awesome. Catching a brook trout of trophy proportions is as difficult as it should be. The trail continues to climb steadily uphill for another 1.6 miles. In 0.6 miles it crosses an old logging road. There are several well established campgrounds along the shores of the lakes. The Golden Trout Lakes trail quickly passes some small ponds and weaves through a forest of spruce and pine. Golden Stonefly Nymphs, June and July, size 4-6 Streamers, just about any time but especially in the fall for large brown trout. At 3.8 miles, there is a well-marked fork in the road. This is a beautiful lake when you get to the top. We ran into another set of hikers on the way up and they had on very large bells (they had run into a couple of griz the day before while. Turn east at the Portal Creek turnoff – FS Road 984. However, after all those hours on the water, I still had not caught a trophy brook trout… Commonly searched for in Gallatin Gateway. If you take the cut-off trail for 1.8 miles you will intersect the Hidden Lakes Trail. Ask fellow travelers and attraction managers your top questions. Trailhead: 5.1 miles north of Big Sky Turn off, then 6.8 miles east on Portal Creek Road It’s a short adventure to see the other lakes. Lakes in Montana - Montana has an abuncance of quality lakes for fishing, boating, swimming and recreation. DISCUSSION Present Status Of the 14 lake systems in Montana with golden trout in 1981, only Lightning, Sylvan, Sawtooth, Island, Hidden #5, 6 and 7 and Golden Trout lakes appear relatively secure. June/July. The map also shows hotspots where our fishing junkies have caught lunkers and posted photos and stories. The trailhead for Golden Trout Lakes is located off of US Highway 191 south of Bozeman, Montana… Golden Trout Lakes. The trail ends at Golden Trout Lakes on the northern slopes of Eaglehead Mountain (9979′). The USFS trailhead sign is next to the trail for Windy Pass. I love the lake you end up at. Bring your fly fishing rod & catch some of the only golden trout in the area. No bikes are allowed past this point. Golden Lake is one of those lakes with incredible views and world class Cutthroat Trout. If you are a resident of another country or region, please select the appropriate version of Tripadvisor for your country or region in the drop-down menu. Who has hiked in to the A-B Wilderness in search of Golden Trout… The parking area is large and has plenty of room for lots of vehicles. The right fork takes you to Hidden Lakes Trail. A fit hiker can probably make it to either destination in an hour or so. more. Montana FWP stocks many alpine lakes every four years, but some have populations of wild fish. It is a steep hike and when we went, there was practically no one on the trail. Hotels near Little Bear School House Museum & Historical Society, Horseback Riding Tours in Gallatin Gateway, Nature & Wildlife Tours in Gallatin Gateway, Other Outdoor Activities in Gallatin Gateway, Beer Tastings & Tours in Gallatin Gateway, Wine Tours & Tastings in Gallatin Gateway, Golden Trout Lakes Trail: Tickets & Tours‎, Warren Miller Performing Arts Center: Tickets & Tours‎, Little Bear School House Museum & Historical Society: Tickets & Tours‎, Buffalo Jump Sports Bar & Grill: Tickets & Tours‎. It’s the ideal place to spend the day or a weekend fishing, if you have a MT fishing license, and enjoying the peaceful Gallatin Range. These alpine fisheries are nestled in some of the most beautiful and secluded places, places where anglers can catch large and pristine native cutthroat trout, rare and challenging golden trout, rip-snorting rainbows, and gorgeous grayling. These popular lakes contain a salmonid diversity that includes Yellowstone cutthroat trout, golden trout, and arctic grayling, says Ken Frazer, FWP regional fisheries manager in Billings. Go early. The left fork takes you to Windy Pass and Golden Trout Lakes trails. Generally you can’t just do a quick day trip for these ornate fish. When you click these links and are redirected to sites like Amazon.com, Backcountry.com, and other online retailers and then proceed to purchase items, it helps to support this site and costs you nothing. There are currently about 20 golden trout populations in the high mountain lakes of western and southcentral Montana. We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. After passing a large meadow, the trail climbs steeply toward some large boulders before it levels off for the final approach to the lake. The first challenge in catching golden trout is determining which lakes hold them. All rights reserved, Mountain Journey | Backcountry Skiing, Climbing, Mountaineering, Hiking, Golden Trout Lakes Trail, Gallatin Range, MT. Beautiful Alpine Lake. Golden trouts regularly rise to the surface and are easily visible in the clear waters. In another 0.2 miles it passes the Hidden Lakes Trail Cut-off Trail. Fishermen will find a variety of fish including brown trout, northern pike, rainbow trout and whitefish here. Is this a place or activity you would suggest for, Are the prices for this place or activity, Is this a must-do if you are traveling with a, Beautiful Trail; Even More Beautiful Lakes, We did this trail with two other couples in July...it is a beautiful trail that leads to an even more beautiful lake, Golden Trout Lakes. Neither trail is terribly difficult. 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