North Loop

Missoula, Montana

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The North Loop starts on the west side of Jumbo and runs over an upper saddle on the ridgeline. The grassy slopes of Mount Jumbo are interrupted by draws and patches of forest. Unique views of the North Hills and the Rattlesnake Valley mark the hike. The trail is a road that the city occasionally uses for maintenance of the area. It makes for good side by side walking with a gentle gradient. A variety of wildlife calls the forested portions of this hike home. Be on the look out for elk and deer, as well as the more rare black bear (which uses Danny O’Brien Gulch as a travel corridor) and mountain lion. It intersects the Ridge Trail leading up to Woods Gulch and then drops slightly into Marshall Canyon before circling down into the main Jumbo saddle. The saddle is a historic travel route for Native Americans and Montana settlers alike as a way to avoid Hellgate Canyon. Follow the Saddle Trail to complete the loop and finish out the hike. This trail is closed from December 1 to May 1 to protect elk winter range. A large deer herd takes refuge here too.
Best Hikes Near Missoula

DESCRIPTION FROM:

Best Hikes Near Missoula

by Josh Mahan (Falcon Guides)

The North Loop starts on the west side of Jumbo and runs over an upper saddle on the ridgeline. The grassy slopes of Mount Jumbo are interrupted by draws and patches of forest. Unique views of the North Hills and the Rattlesnake Valley mark the hike. The trail is a road that the city occasionally uses for maintenance of the area. It makes for good side by side walking with a gentle gradient. A variety of wildlife calls the forested portions of this hike home.

Be on the look out for elk and deer, as well as the more rare black bear (which uses Danny O’Brien Gulch as a travel corridor) and mountain lion. It intersects the Ridge Trail leading up to Woods Gulch and then drops slightly into Marshall Canyon before circling down into the main Jumbo saddle. The saddle is a historic travel route for Native Americans and Montana settlers alike as a way to avoid Hellgate Canyon. Follow the Saddle Trail to complete the loop and finish out the hike. This trail is closed from December 1 to May 1 to protect elk winter range. A large deer herd takes refuge here too.

© 2014 Josh Mahan/Falcon Guides. All Rights Reserved.

Activity Type: Hiking
Nearby City: Missoula
Distance: 4.6
Trail Type: Loop/Lollipop
Skill Level: Moderate
Duration: 2 hours
Season: Year-round
Accessibility: Dog-friendly
Local Contacts: Missoula Parks and Recreation, 600 Cregg Lane, Missoula, MT 59801; (406) 721-7275; ci.missoula.mt.us Lolo National Forest Supervisor’s Office, Fort Missoula Building 24A, Missoula, MT 59804; (406) 3293750; www.fs.usda.gov/lolo/
Local Maps: USGS Northeast Missoula; USDAFS Lolo National Forest, available at Fort Missoula; City of Missoula Parks, Open Space & Trails.
Driving Directions: Directions to North Loop

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Apr 2018