Trail of the Week: Birch Lake in the Jewel Basin
Enjoy sprawling views of Flathead Valley and the Swan Range
Birch Lake, in the Jewel Basin east of Kalispell, has it all. This moderate trail will lead you past grand vistas, abundant huckleberries, and if you’re lucky, plenty of wildlife. From the hike’s high point, you’ll be able to gaze across the whole of the Flathead Valley, and if the weather cooperates, Birch Lake is a lovely place for a summer swim. There’s great fishing there, too. On the way back to the trailhead, make sure you’re on the lookout for the families of mountain goats that roam the slopes of the northern Swan Range.
Roundtrip Distance: 6.25 mi.
Elevation Gain: 636 ft.
Highest Elevation: 6,380 ft.
See trail details on hikewildmontana.org.
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Trail of the Week is produced by Peter Hoag. Special thanks to the Greater Montana Foundation, Montana Public Radio, and Trail 103.3 for their support in producing this series. Thanks also to Montana Public Radio, Yellowstone Public Radio, Trail 103.3, KINX, Dave FM, KMTX, KMXM, KOPR, KBOW, and KGLT for airing Trail of the Week. Funding for Trail of the Week is provided by the Greater Montana Foundation -- encouraging communication on issues, trends, and values of importance to Montanans.
- Keely Damara, MWA communications coordinator