CLARK FORK RIVERFRONT
Southside Trail
Northside Trail

BLUE MOUNTAIN RECREATION AREA
Maclay Flat Interpretive Trail
Forest Roads No. 365 and No. 2137
Blue Mountain Nature Trail
Blue Mountain National Recreation Trail
Motor Vehicle Trails

SOUTH HILLS TRAIL SYSTEM
Meadow Hill Trail
Ravenwood Park Trail
Peery Park, Moose Can Gully Trails
High Park Loop

MOUNT SENTINEL
Kim Williams Trail
"M" Trail
Mount Sentinel Fire Road
Mo Z Trail
Pengelly Ridge Trail
Hellgate Canyon Trail

SOUTH MISSOULA
Bitterroot Branch Trail
Tower Complex Trail
South Avenue Trail
Raven Park Trail
Larchmont Trail

PATTEE CANYON RECREATION AREA
Sam Braxton Trail
Crazy Canyon Trail
Northside Trails
Southside Ski Trails

RATTLESNAKE NATIONAL
RECREATION AREA and WILDERNESS

Main Travel Corridor
Spring Gulch/Stuart Peak Trail
Woods Gulch/Sheep Mountain Trail
Sawmill/Curry Trail System

RATTLESNAKE VALLEY
Greenough Park Trails
Routes North of Greenough Park
Mount Jumbo Trails

NORTH HILLS TRAILS
Moon Randolph Homestead

SHORT TRIPS from MISSOULA
Cha-paa-qn/Sleeping Woman Trail
North Summit/Lolo Peak

 

 

CLARK FORK RIVERFRONT - NORTHSIDE TRAIL

Old Fox site to the Van Buren Street Footbridge

Miles: 2

Elevation gain: None

Dogs: On leash

Caras Park, a 15-acre city park downtown along the Clark Fork River, is considered the hub of the Missoula trails network. Here, you’ll find ample parking, restrooms, picnic tables, benches and an outdoor amphitheater for community events – plus ready access to downtown shopping, restaurants and other points of interest.

In the summer, be sure to join the Out to Lunch program held every Wednesday in Caras Park. It’s a weekly Missoula celebration with free music and other entertainment, and a variety of food options available for purchase from vendors.

On the west side of Caras Park, check out A Carousel for Missoula, a hand-carved carousel that was created through the effort of Missoula volunteers, and its companion Dragon Hollow play area.

From Caras Park east to Bess Reed Park, the trail is paved and readily accessible to wheelchairs and people who need a smooth, level surface for walking. Enjoy the close-up view you have of the river along this stretch and, in spring and summer, notice the wildflowers that bloom along the riverbank.

Just east of the Higgins Avenue Bridge, look for the sculpture “Returning” by Montana artist Jeffrey Funk. Children love to touch and climb on Funk’s trio of trout.

There’s a short gap in the riverfront trail just east of Bess Reed Park, but you can easily follow city streets to get back on the trail at Kiwanis Park. From Bess Reed, turn left (north) on Washington Street, then right (east) on Kiwanis Street. This street dead-ends at Kiwanis Park, where you can pick up the pathway on the levee next to the river. You’ll find a picnic area, a baseball field and tennis courts in the park.

The trail follows the levee through Kiwanis Park to a residential area next to the Madison Street Bridge. At this point, you’ll need to make another detour onto city streets to continue east. Go left (north) on Parsons Street to East Front Street. Turn right (east) on Front, continue across Madison Street and pick up the trail near the Van Buren Street Footbridge.

At the footbridge, you can cross the river to the Southside Trail or continue north to access trails in the Rattlesnake Valley and the Rattlesnake National Recreation Area and Wilderness. Note that the Chamber of Commerce Visitor Center is just north of the bridge; inquire there if you need more information.

 

 
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