Photo above: Mountains and grasslands sprawl across Southwest Montana
in the Beaverhead-Deerlodge National Forest.
This largest of the national forests in Montana covers 3.32 million
acres, and lies in eight Southwest Montana counties (Granite, Powell,
Jefferson, Deer Lodge, Silver Bow, Madison, Gallatin and Beaverhead).
Forest Service offices administering the National Forest are in
Butte, Dillon, Philipsburg, Deer Lodge, Whitehall, Boulder, Ennis,
Sheridan, Wise River, and Wisdom.
The forest provides timber, minerals, and grazing lands. It also
offers breath-taking scenery for a wide variety of recreational
pursuits. Whether it's wilderness trekking in the Anaconda-Pintler
or Lee Metcalf wildernesses, driving the Gravelly Range Road or
Pioneer Mountains Scenic Byway, or camping in one of the 50 small
to medium-sized campgrounds in the forest, the Beaverhead-Deerlodge
has it all.
Winter enthusiasts find snowmobiling, cross-country skiing trails,
as well as downhill skiing at Discovery, near Anaconda, and Maverick
Mountain, near Dillon. Summertime affords chances to hike and drive
primitive routes to high-mountain lakes or to drive more improved
roads to places like Delmoe and Wade lakes.
The Continental Divide National Scenic Trail and Nez Perce Historic
Trail pass through the forest. Georgetown Lake offers winter and
summer recreation near Philipsburg. At the ghost towns of Elkhorn,
Granite and Coolidge, you can relive Montana's boom and bust past.
Sheepshead Recreation Area, north of Butte, offers pleasant picnicking
and lake fishing, accessible for the disabled.