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9 Dog Friendly Hiking Trails in Montana You Can Visit In 2023

Gregory Iacono

By Gregory Iacono

blue merle shetland sheepdog at the park

Montana is an amazing state with an incredibly diverse terrain that includes the Rocky Mountains and the Great Plains. From snow-capped mountain peaks to pristine lakes, there’s so much to see in Montana that you’d need a lifetime to do it.

One fantastic way to see Montana is to take your canine companion while you hike the state’s many amazing hiking trails. Below we’ve compiled nine dog-friendly hiking trails in The Treasure State you can visit in 2023. Read on to see which trails look best for you and your dog before you head out on your next adventure!


The 9 Dog Friendly Hiking Trails in Montana

1. The Whitefish Trail

🗺️ Address: 📍 Beaver Lake Rd, Whitefish, MT, US, 59937
🕐 Open Times: 24 Hours
💲 Cost: Free
🐕 Off-Leash: No
  • Poop bags are available at the trailhead
  • Bathrooms and trash cans are available
  • Incredibly scenic views of Beaver Lake
  • 42 miles of trails available
  • Dogs must be on-leash at all times

2. Zimmerman Park

🗺️ Address: 📍 3314 MT-3, Billings, MT, US, 59106
🕐 Open Times: 5 AM to 10 PM, 7 days a week
💲 Cost: Free
🐕 Off-Leash: Yes
  • Beautiful overlook of the entire city of Billings
  • No fences around cliffs
  • Reports of many folks not picking up after their dogs
  • Many bushes have big, nasty thorns, so be careful
  • No poop bags available
  • Bring water; the hike is strenuous

3. Norm Schoenthal Island

🗺️ Address: 📍 7026 S Billings Blvd, Billings, MT, US, 59101
🕐 Open Times: 6 AM to 9 PM, 7 days a week
💲 Cost: Free
🐕 Off-Leash: No
  • A very scenic trail around the park
  • Reports of heavy mosquitos
  • Gorgeous sunset views
  • Reports that off-leash is okay are unconfirmed
  • Places for dogs to swim

4. Swan River Trail

🗺️ Address: 📍 95 Grand Dr, Bigfork, MT, US, 59111
🕐 Open Times: 6 AM to 9 PM, 7 days a week
💲 Cost: Free
🐕 Off-Leash: No
  • 4-mile round-trip hike
  • Picnic tables and benches are available
  • Relatively flat and is okay for older dogs
  • Lake access for dogs to swim
  • Rated very highly by locals
  • No poop bags, so bring your own

5. Trout Creek Canyon Trail

🗺️ Address: 📍 Highway 280 East, Helena, MT, US, 59601
🕐 Open Times: 24/7, 365 days a year
💲 Cost: Free
🐕 Off-Leash: Yes and no
  • Moderately challenging hike for dogs and humans
  • Beautiful trail surrounded by nature
  • Be aware of bears and other wildlife
  • Spring flowers are spectacular
  • No poop bags available
  • Very remote so bring food and water

6. River’s Edge Trail

🗺️ Address: 📍 Great Falls, MT, US, 59404
🕐 Open Times: 6 AM to 9 PM, 7 days a week
💲 Cost: Free
🐕 Off-Leash: No
  • 55 miles of railroad converted to trails
  • 12 trailhead parking areas
  • Waterfalls to see along the way
  • No poop bags available
  • Very flat and suitable for all dogs
  • Parking & restrooms at Lewis & Clark Center

7. Hell Roaring Trail

🗺️ Address: 📍 Gateway, MT, US, 59730
🕐 Open Times: 24/7, 365 days a year
💲 Cost: Free
🐕 Off-Leash: No
  • 5-mile in-and-out trail
  • Horseback riders use the trail, so be aware
  • Best between May and October
  • No poop bags or water, so bring both
  • Steep climbs at some points

8. Little Spar Lake Trail

🗺️ Address: 📍 NF-384, Troy, MT, US, 59935
🕐 Open Times: 24/7, 365 days a year
💲 Cost: Free
🐕 Off-Leash: Yes
  • Vigorous 8-mile hike
  • Amazing alpine views and scenery
  • Can swim in Little Spar Lake
  • Be wary of wildlife
  • No poop bags or water available

9. Gallagator Linear Trail

🗺️ Address: 📍E Story St, Bozeman, MT 59715, USA
🕐 Open Times: 24/7, 365 days a year
💲 Cost: Free
🐕 Off-Leash: Sometimes

Divider-Dog- New

Final Thoughts

There are dozens of trails all over Montana you can explore with your dog, but if we’re being honest, many are incredibly difficult to find because the state is so big. Hopefully, the dog-friendly hiking trails we’ve shared with you today will encourage you to explore the state with your pup!

Montana is a huge state with amazing scenery that begs to be experienced firsthand. One word of caution is that there is wildlife everywhere you go, so always be aware of your surroundings. Also, the weather in Montana can change quickly, so always be prepared for the worst. Pack food and water for you and your dog, and always bring the right gear.

Featured Image Credit: arturs.stiebrins, Shutterstock

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