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Doris Ridge Trail #52 | Hungry Horse, Montana

Hiking Trail or Trailhead

Doris Lakes and Doris Mountain are not too far from the communities of Hungry Horse and Columbia Falls, Montana, but remote enough to be a peaceful retreat. The drive itself offers spectacular views and can feel like it takes forever to arrive to trailhead, but for those patient enough it's well worth it. Make a day of it and pack swimsuit and lunch to take to the Doris Lakes and beyond to Doris Mountain if you choose. From Doris Ridge and Doris Mountain enjoy incredible 360 degree views of the Flathead Valley, Swan Crest, Bob Marshall Wilderness Complex, Glacier National Park and Canada. For those seeking further adventure the Doris Ridge Trail connects to the Swan Crest's Alpine Trail #7 linking you to 54.7 miles of ridgeline trail. It's approximately six miles round trip to Doris Lake and 10 miles round trip to Doris Mountain.

There are no bathroom facilities or potable water at trailhead and beyond, so leave no trace and pack water and/or water filter. Be advised there tends to be downed trees across the trail, so be prepared to climb or duck under trees.

Hiking up Doris Ridge Trail with view of Doris Lakes below. – Sheena Pate

Driving Directions from Nearest Town or Landmark

From Columbia Falls, Montana to Doris Ridge Trail #52 Trailhead (20.2 miles, approximately 40 minute drive) Take US-2 E from Columbia Falls to Hungry Horse, Turn right onto NF-895/West Side Rd, Cross Hungry Horse Reservoir Dam, Continue down west side of Hungry Horse Reservoir 2.1 miles to Road 895H look for brown Forest Service sign that says Alpha and Beta Lakes), Take right on Road 895H, Trailhead will be approximately 11.3 miles down Road 895H at 0.1 miles before road dead ends. Park in one of the handful of spots. Don't walk up road beyond parking area. You'll want to look for single track trail and start hiking from there.

Highlights and Best Features of this Trail

  • Access to series of three alpine lakes
  • Swimming and fishing opportunities
  • Connects to Alpine Trail #7 on ridge

Trail Distance

2.5 miles one-way, 3 miles to largest lake & 5 miles to mountain

Trail Vertical Gain or Loss

Gain: 400 feet to lakes; 1,200 feet to Doris Mountain peak