explore locally

Our area is full of local parks, trails and public spaces. Enjoy them while being mindful of your impact on the surrounding communities. Check in with local Chambers or Visitor Information Centers to pick up travel guides and maps, as well as get suggestions for things to do, places to go and insider tips.

Central Montana offers visitors a variety of options to explore locally - visit a national wildlife refuge, hike our trails or enjoy eating pie on another “trail”.

The Helena-Lewis & Clark National Forest has unlimited opportunities for hiking. From rugged hikes along the Rocky Mountain Front to gentler trails in the Little Belt Mountains, Highwood Mountains, Castle Mountains, Crazy Mountains and Snowy Mountains. The Bear Paw Mountains near our northern border also offer a nice variety of terrain. Visit our hiking options.

Several communities have urban trails with easy access and a variety of terrain and views. The 60 mile long River’s Edge Trail in Great Falls follows the Missouri River and features both paved and graveled portions. Havre’s Baltrusch Trail climbs up and down rolling terrain with unlimited views. Lewistown’s trail system starts in the heart of downtown, circles the community and travels through the reclaimed and historic Brewery Flats area south of town. Fort Benton’s trail follows the Missouri River as it flows along the river levee through town. Harlowton’s Smoking Boomer Trail takes you through a variety of terrain and so does Shelby’s 5-mile Roadrunner Recreational Trail.

Traveling with kids? Central Montana has trails for all ages so exploring locally is easier than ever.

Now let’s talk about that pie trail. We affectionately named it Pie a la Road. Throughout Central Montana you’ll find over 20 local restaurants and diners that offer homemade pie. As seasons change, the varieties of pie seem to change and many bakers will purchase a pumpkin grown just down the road, bake it, and then it becomes pumpkin pie on the menu.

Explore a national wildlife refuge just 15 minutes from Great Falls. Benton Lake National Wildlife Refuge has a staffed visitor center, driving routes, and plenty of birds to make progress on a bird checkoff list.