Another beautiful day along the Rocky Mountain Front found me at Cave Mountain campground in the Lewis & Clark National Forest.
If you drive US Hwy 89 about 5 miles north of Choteau, then turn west onto the Teton Road and drive about 23 miles, you’ll reach the turn for Cave Mountain campground. About two-thirds of the Teton Road to Cave Mountain is paved, then it turns to gravel. The terrain seems fairly flat when you turn on to the Teton Road and you can see the spectacular mountain backdrop. As you drive a little farther, all of a sudden you are in more of a canyon area with rocky sidehills and you follow along the Teton River and it’s rocky streambed.
I saw a variety of camping styles at Cave Mountain – RVs, campers on pickups, pull-behind trailers and tents. The forest service has designated campsites with firepits here. The maximum length for trailers is 22 feet and there is a nominal fee to camp. Although the campground wasn’t full, there were quite a few campers seeking the fresh mountain air and some relief from warmer temps at lower elevations.
I’m fairly sure that this is the West Fork of the Teton. No matter which fork it is, it is beautiful. Wildflowers, rippling clear water and possibly a trout or two combined for amazing scenery and captured the attention of my camera.
I didn’t see anyone fishing. Several families hiked and many enjoyed the outdoor camraderie around an evening campfire.
The Lewis & Clark National Forest includes forest lands along the Rocky Mountain Front and also southeast of Great Falls in the Little Belt Mountains. There is no reservation system for these campgrounds, it is first-come, first-served. District ranger offices can be found in Augusta, Choteau, Stanford, near Monarch-Neihart and White Sulphur Springs. The supervisor’s office in Great Falls also has information and maps available.