The road in is not well marked. If you take the cut-off trail for 1.8 miles you will intersect the Hidden Lakes Trail. Golden Trout Lakes from Mapcarta, the free map. This is a beautiful lake when you get to the top. If you continue to use this site we will assume that you are happy with it. Golden Trout Lakes is an absolutely picture perfect, hidden gem in the Gallatin Range of Montana. Derek Lennon is a skier and writer who lives, works, and plays in the mountains. If you are a resident of another country or region, please select the appropriate version of Tripadvisor for your country or region in the drop-down menu. Hebgen Lake is a special trout fishery. Some popular destinations are Lightning Lake, Cave Lake, the Hidden Lakes (Gallatin Range) and the Golden Trout Lakes. The Golden Trout Lakes fishing map contains information about some of the best fishing spots this lake has to offer as well as the nearby cottages, campgrounds, and bait and tackle shops. The trailhead serves double duty as it's the jumping off place for two trails. There are several well established campgrounds along the shores of the lakes. Finally it was time to wet a line in search for the fish of a lifetime, and soon I would be actually fishing for golden trout. Generally you can’t just do a quick day trip for these ornate fish. Like a Peacock and a Goldfish Combined in a Dream, Simply Beautiful! In early July 2012, my mom and I headed up into the Gallatin Mountains for our next hiking adventure: Golden Trout Lakes. These popular lakes contain a salmonid diversity that includes Yellowstone cutthroat trout, golden trout, and arctic grayling, says Ken Frazer, FWP regional fisheries manager in Billings. The right fork takes you to Hidden Lakes Trail. Not too strenuous, and a beautiful lake at the end, This is a less busy trail in the area, probably due to the 6 mile dirt road drive on the way in. We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to and affiliated sites. Let the world see your experience through your eyes. The first twenty years of my brook trout fishing career where spent happily catching dozens of fish in Montana’s streams and lakes. In Montana, that's not terribly difficult through the MFISH database. It’s a short adventure to see the other lakes. Here's a look at some excellent Montana Brook Trout we tracked down last summer. To get to Golden Trout Lakes, head north out of Big Sky on highway 191 for 5.1 miles. At 3.8 miles, there is a well-marked fork in the road. It was difficult driving up the road to get to the beginning of the trail, so I recommend a vehicle that can handle the rough road; preferably a truck or AWD. The trailhead for Golden Trout Lakes is located off of US Highway 191 south of Bozeman, Montana… We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. _________________________________________________. They provide a unique opportunity to catch a beautiful fish in a pristine environment. Please choose a different date. Fly-fishing for golden trout is a time-consuming, obsession-creating adventure of a time. (Hiking) Golden Trout Lakes, Near Big Sky, Montana By danwgoodman on June 27, 2012 • ( 3 Comments ) Stifling heat and choking smoke may define the legacy of Montana’s 2012 summer, but the state’s high altitude mountain lakes have so far remained havens for outdoor seekers of … Be sure to enjoy the spectacular views, take a dip in the deep, chilly, clear alpine water, and appreciate the silence of Golden Trout Lakes. Yikes! Author and a beautiful Golden Trout! The trail ends at Golden Trout Lakes on the northern slopes of Eaglehead Mountain (9979′). Head south out of the parking lot toward a log fence on an old logging road to access the Golden Trout Lakes trail. Location: Portal Creek, Gallatin Canyon, Gallatin Range Learn more here. You might also find goldens scattered around in few other lakes, but they are not as widespread as many species of trout in Montana. I love the lake you end up at. Stay left for Golden Trout Lakes Trail. Multiple Montana’s state record golden trout weighing around 5 pounds have been taken from Lightning Lake over the years. hiking). Four buddies hiked to Cave Lake, MT in hope of catching Golden Trout. The Golden Trout Lakes trail (Trail #89) is located up Portal Creek in the Gallatin Canyon near Big Sky. Caught fish, saw lots of wildlife, and had a good time; with some CRAZY surprises. I believe that the roundtrip distance is a little off compared to this site in my opinion, but I totally recommend this hike to anyone. There are currently about 20 golden trout populations in the high mountain lakes of western and southcentral Montana. These alpine fisheries are nestled in some of the most beautiful and secluded places, places where anglers can catch large and pristine native cutthroat trout, rare and challenging golden trout, rip-snorting rainbows, and gorgeous grayling. A quick lap around Golden Trout Lakes is about 0.3 miles. The USFS trailhead sign is next to the trail for Windy Pass. Montana FWP stocks many alpine lakes every four years, but some have populations of wild fish. There are a couple of lakes in Montana's Pioneer Mountains below 8,000 feet where FWP has decided to stock golden trout every six years (only once, in 2014, so far). Stay right at the first fork. All rights reserved, Mountain Journey | Backcountry Skiing, Climbing, Mountaineering, Hiking, Golden Trout Lakes Trail, Gallatin Range, MT. Total Elevation Gain : 1300 ft And the hike itself is pretty easy. However, after all those hours on the water, I still had not caught a trophy brook trout… Golden Trout Lakes trail is a 5 mile out and back hike to a beautiful alpine lake in the Gallatin Range of SW Montana. With multiple peaks over 12,000 ft. elevation and hundreds of backcountry lakes, the Beartooth Wilderness/ mountain range is a premier destination for incredible high alpine lake fishing. Copyright © 2018 A Mountain Journey LLC. Rough roads to the Golden Trout Lakes It was difficult driving up the road to get to the beginning of the trail, so I recommend a vehicle that can handle the rough road; preferably a truck or AWD. It is a steep hike and when we went, there was practically no one on the trail. Golden Trout Lakes is a water feature in Montana and has an elevation of 9078 feet. Bring your fly fishing rod & catch some of the only golden trout in the area. One accesses Windy Pass (a nice hike in it's own right), the other heads off to the Golden Trout Lakes. It’s the ideal place to spend the day or a weekend fishing, if you have a MT fishing license, and enjoying the peaceful Gallatin Range. The road is in rough condition and is better suited for vehicles with a higher clearance. Golden trouts regularly rise to the surface and are easily visible in the clear waters. The dirt road follows Portal Creek. It is 303,511 acres (1,228.3 km 2) in size and was created by the US Congress in 1978 as part of the National Wilderness Preservation System. In Wyoming, however, they don't offer stocking records on their website. The lakes are filled with crystal clear mountain water. Commonly searched for in Gallatin Gateway. After passing a large meadow, the trail climbs steeply toward some large boulders before it levels off for the final approach to the lake. Golden Stonefly Nymphs, June and July, size 4-6 Streamers, just about any time but especially in the fall for large brown trout. The parking area is large and has plenty of room for lots of vehicles. You see lots of wildflowers in. Golden Trout Lakes is a lake located just 11.9 miles from Big Sky, in Gallatin County, in the state of Montana, United States, near George Norman Trailer Court, MT. Once you get to the beginning of the trail, the hike is a nice little workout until you reach the final location of Golden Trout Lakes. There are several small stream crossings that are easy to rock hop across. The Golden Trout lakes offer a scenic getaway just out of the Gallatin Valley Canyon. It’s a good idea to download Topo Maps for this hike because Golden Trout Lakes is located on the very corner of the Lone Indian Peak USGS Quad map. If you’ve already been, go again because it’s awesome. The trail continues to climb steadily uphill for another 1.6 miles. Hebgen Lake. uses affiliate links throughout the site. 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