Pioneer Falls

Bozeman, Montana

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Pioneer Falls is located in the forested foothills of the Spanish Peaks in the Lee Metcalf Wilderness. Water crashes down for over 40 feet, putting on an impressive display. Views of Blaze Mountain and other 10,000-foot peaks will lure you along the gentle trail through scenic meadows and woods, and the visibility and pristine habitat will give you a good chance of seeing wildlife. This is a great family hike, and backpackers will love this stop on the way to lakes and summits in the area. The trail promptly leaves the meadow area and enters open fir, spruce, and pine forest. You cross a bridge over the South Fork Spanish Creek and pass a junction with Cherry Creek Trail on the right. Take a left to continue on South Fork Spanish Creek Trail. Amble gently alongside the willow bottoms on a wide and well-maintained trail until you arrive at a sign marking entrance to Lee Metcalf Wilderness. The trail then passes through a meadow of tall grass and fragrant wildflowers with open views toward the windy creek.
Hiking Waterfalls in Montana

DESCRIPTION FROM:

Hiking Waterfalls in Montana

by John Kratz (Falcon Guides)

Pioneer Falls is located in the forested foothills of the Spanish Peaks in the Lee Metcalf Wilderness. Water crashes down for over 40 feet, putting on an impressive display. Views of Blaze Mountain and other 10,000-foot peaks will lure you along the gentle trail through scenic meadows and woods, and the visibility and pristine habitat will give you a good chance of seeing wildlife. This is a great family hike, and backpackers will love this stop on the way to lakes and summits in the area.

The trail promptly leaves the meadow area and enters open fir, spruce, and pine forest. You cross a bridge over the South Fork Spanish Creek and pass a junction with Cherry Creek Trail on the right. Take a left to continue on South Fork Spanish Creek Trail. Amble gently alongside the willow bottoms on a wide and well-maintained trail until you arrive at a sign marking entrance to Lee Metcalf Wilderness. The trail then passes through a meadow of tall grass and fragrant wildflowers with open views toward the windy creek.

© 2017 John Kratz/Falcon Guides. All Rights Reserved.

Activity Type: Campgrounds, Hiking
Nearby City: Bozeman
Distance: 6.0
Elevation Gain: 710 feet
Trail Type: Out-and-back
Skill Level: Easy
Duration: 2-3 hours
Campsites: 4
Season: May-Oct
Features: Waterfalls
Accessibility: Dog-friendly, Kid-friendly
Local Contacts: Custer Gallatin National Forest, PO Box 130, 10 East Babcock Ave., Bozeman, MT 59771; (406) 587-6701; fs.usda.gov/main/custergallatin
Local Maps: DeLorme Atlas and Gazetteer Montana Page 83, C10; USGS Quad Willow Swamp
Fees per Night: 0
Driving Directions: Directions to Pioneer Falls

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Apr 2018