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Painted Rocks State Park

Painted Rocks State Park

Painted Rocks State Park

Named for the green, yellow and orange lichens that cover the grey and black walls of the granite and rhyolite cliffs, Painted Rocks State Park is located in the West Fork Valley of the Bitterroot Mountains.

We are able to bring you valuable information about this amazing state park thanks to the support of:

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Download Campsite Map

Looking to camp?

Painted Rocks State Park offers 25 campsites, a boat ramp and boat dock. Be sure if you’re bringing your trailer or RV that it’s no longer than 25 feet!

And if you like to hike, there are many trailheads near the park that offer access to national forest land. 

Painted Rocks Dam was originally planned to be constructed for agricultural use!

The Montana Water Conservation started work on Painted Rock Dam in 1939. Today, Painted Rocks Reservoir provides water for irrigation, stock water, domestic use and in-stream flows for fish. The reservoir the dam creates is the perfect location for boating or fishing!

While in the park, keep your eyes open for the diverse populations of wildlife including elk, mule deer, white-tailed deer, black bear or moose! You may even catch a glimpse of bighorn sheep or peregrine falcons which were reintroduced to the area in the 1980s.

Are you or do you know an avid birdwatcher? If you happen to be in the area in the spring or fall, you’re in luck! Osprey, great blue heron, water ouzels, spotted sandpiper and kill-deer make pitstops in their migration patterns at Painted Rocks State Park.

Part of the homeland of the Salish people for many years, this area continues to be a place of great value to the Salish. The area did, and still does, provide great hunting and a place to gather traditional foods such as huckleberries, serviceberries, Bitterroot, trout as well as other fish and mountain tea. 

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Curious what other visitors have had to say about the park?

"It was beautiful! I've been here many times but this is the first time I kayaked it. Absolutely smooth as glass on the most perfect sunshiny day."

"Beautiful, peaceful, wonderful place to spend time with the family."

"What is not to love. So worth the drive."

"Lovely scenery, very peaceful. Saw my first big horn sheep in the wild here. It was amazing"

 

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    Park

    Open Year-Round

    Dawn to Dusk

    Campground

    Open Year-Round

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    Location

    8809 West Fork Road Darby, MT 59829

Medicine Rocks State Park

Medicine Rocks State Park

Medicine Rocks State Park

The Medicine Rocks are a series of natural rock formations considered sacred by local Native American tribes. They are covered in Native Rock Art or Pictographs.

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Download Campsite Map

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Download Park Map

Looking to camp?

Those looking to enjoy the park overnight will find 12 campsites nestled among the Swiss cheese-like rock formations. But be sure to arrive early as all of these sites are first-come, first served.

  • Hike through the prairie and forest or even climb into caves!
  • Take incredible pictures of the rock formations!
  • Enjoy a picnic and enjoy the ever-changing landscape!
  • Keep your eyes open for wildlife including mule deer, antelope, Woodhouse's toads and sharp-tailed grouse!
  • Camp at one of the 12 rustic campsites!
  • Stargaze on a clear night or plan a visit during a meteor shower! 

A scenic drive on Montana Highway 7 through rolling hills and prairie, visitors will be amazed by the incredible beauty of Medicine Rocks State Park. As you approach the park you’ll see sandstone pillars, caves archways and towers rising out of the plains with small batches of pine forest in some areas.

But how did these formations come to be?
Around 60-million years ago, the Great Plains were covered by an immense sea. The edges of this sea were swamp-like and forested with a shallow river that cut through carrying sediment from the forming Rocky Mountains. Portions of this sediment were deposited along the path of the river creating sandbars.

Over the years, these sandbars turned to sandstone where wind, water and temperature extremes took their toll.

The stronger materials stayed while the less resistant material was eroded away. The rock that was able to withstand millions of years of erosion now makes up the odd formations found at Medicine Rocks State Park.

Once you’re in the park, a road twists and turns through rock outcroppings taking visitors to the camping and picnic areas. Many of the formations can be viewed from your vehicle, but exploring the park by foot allows visitors to get up close and personal with these rock formations.

Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, Medicine Rocks is also an important cultural site for Native Americans, once used as a vision quest location, meeting place and lookout for bison or enemies.

Many early settlers and cattle drivers carved their names or initials along with the dates they visited into the rocks. You can still find many of these and a complete list of these names can be found in the nearby Carter County Museum!

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    Park

    Open Year-Round 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.

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    Campground

    Open Year-Round

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    Additional Information

    Water Available Year-Round

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    Location

    1141 Hwy 7 Ekalaka, MT

Curious what other visitors have had to say about the park?

"Really cool, has camping and places to cook out. Hiking is good. The rock formations are great."

 

"Medicine rocks state park is a beautiful and serene place to visit."

"I saw this park when I was en route to Devil's Tower and decided that, should I ever head out that way again, I would visit it. The park preserves a sand prairie with incredible sandstone. The wildlife viewing was good, as I saw several mule deer and rabbit."

"Lovely, quiet and interesting gem of a state park. We made the hour trip south off 94 and stayed near here on our way west to Yellowstone. We hiked both the loop trail and the short out and back, saw interesting flowers and wildlife. Loved it!"

 

"Lovely, quiet and interesting gem of a state park. We made the hour trip south off 94 and stayed near here on our way west to Yellowstone. We hiked both the loop trail and the short out and back, saw interesting flowers and wildlife. Loved it!"

 

"This park is a hidden gem. Very scenic and quiet and peaceful. About 7 camping spots ... my 30' trailer was just about as big as a few spots would accommodate. Clean toilets, potable water. Highly recommend."

"Lovely, quiet and interesting gem of a state park. We made the hour trip south off 94 and stayed near here on our way west to Yellowstone. We hiked both the loop trail and the short out and back, saw interesting flowers and wild life. Loved it!"

"This is an exceptional place to visit. The landscapes are gorgeous and mesmerizing. The quiet walks through the park take you back through the centuries and millennia as you explore the prairies and the sandstone towers. Highly recommend."

"A beautiful place to camp and hike. I am currently attending the Dino Shindig in Ekalaka MT, and this state park is a great addition to the memories I will make in south-eastern MT."

"An unexpected delight! Saw these beautiful rocks while driving by, made a mini detour to drive through the park. Worth the visit!"

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Logan State Park

Logan State Park

Logan State Park

Just off Highway 2 between Libby and Kalispell, you’ll find Logan State Park, a local hotspot. 

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Download Campsite Map

Looking to camp?

Logan has 37 campsites, but no tent-only sites. RVs and trailers are more than welcome as long as they are no longer than 40 feet. The RV dump station closes in early October.
You’ll even find a playset for the kids and a short nature trail here.

  • Take a dip in the lake and go swimming
  • Go for a boat ride and find some peace.
  • You and your friends or family can even play a game of horseshoes!
  • Take a chance and go water skiing!
  • More of a fisher? You’ll find loads of salmon, trout, perch, pike, bass!
  • 17 Acres

Located in the middle of the 3,000-acre Thompson Chain of Lakes, Logan is heavily forested with Western Larch, Douglas-Fir and Ponderosa Pine making for a beautiful view of the tree covered, mountainous area.

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Curious what other visitors have had to say about the park?

"Very clean great price, camp host very friendly and knowledgeable about everything."

"We camp host here. The people are fantastic. The campground is clean,quiet and right on a beautiful lake with great fishing. All sites have electric. There is water, showers and dump station available on site. Boat slips are available and there is a paved boat launch ramp. There is a playground for the kids and a grassy beach area for swimming. Great place to camp."

"Great park highly recommended. The gate attendants are great and friendly also."

"We absolutely enjoyed our stay. The camp hosts and anyone who worked at the campground were stellar. They wanted you to enjoy your stay. Fishing excellent. Thank you. Only change I'd want is not paying for showers or if you did pay it not be limited to 6 minutes."

 

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    Park

    Open Year-Round

    7 a.m. to 10 p.m.

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    Campground

    Open Year-Round

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    Additional Information

    Water & Showers Available

    Until September 30

    Boat Slips Available:

    Mid-May to September 30

     

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    Location

    77518 US HWY 2 Libby, MT 59923

Brush Lake State Park

Brush Lake State Park

Brush Lake State Park

Brush Lake State Park

Brush Lake State Park is the only state park in the northeast corner of Montana.

Brush Lake is a deep lake (65 feet) in a closed basin and the site of National Science Foundation research on climate change. The lake boasts 45 feet of sediments showcasing 10,000 years of pollen and mineral depositing helping to tell the story of climate, and its changes, since the Ice Age.

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Download Campsite Map

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Download Park Map

Looking to camp?

Brush Lake State Park is 280-acres and its water quality is theorized to be more ocean-like than freshwater like - making it an ideal swimming location in the summer months. Both deep and incredibly clear, Brush Lake’s beaches are surrounded by grass fields and spring wheat during the summer.

  • Hoping to camp? You can do so in one of the 12 campsites!
  • Take a hike and go bird watching along the shore.
  • Public swimming access is on the northeast part of the lake where the day-use area is also located.
  • Utilize the boat launch and take your boat, canoe or kayak out for a day on the water.
  • Have a picnic on the beach!
  • Plus so much more!

Due to its close proximity to Canada, during Prohibition liquor was easy to come by and kept the Brush Lake Summer Resort in business. There was also a dance hall! After the Prohibition era, church and scout groups used the lake, but in the years before it became a state park, Brush Lake wasn’t the popular destination it once had been. Today the area where the dance hall once stood on the south side of the lake, is now privately held.

In Eastern Montana, it is not uncommon to see the Aurora Borealis during solar events, especially during the fall and winter. Brush Lake's northern latitude and remote location make it a "stellar" destination for your next stargazing or northern lights viewing adventure. As a dark sky location, Brush Lake is guaranteed to bring some of the best night sky views in the area.

Because of the high alkali content, Brush Lake does not support a significant fish population. But in contrast, it showcases a distinctive aquamarine blue color. The lake attracts many varieties of birds including various species of ducks, gulls, and many others. Brush Lake has become a great location for bird watchers worldwide.

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Curious what other visitors have had to say about the park?

"Just on weekdays enjoy the beauty of this lake! I liked when you reach there no network service so really enjoy your time , clean water nice for swimming and have fun with kids."

"Lake was nice and clean."

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    Day Use

    7 a.m. to 10 p.m.

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    Campground

    Open May 1 - November 1

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    Location

    1733 Brush Lake Road
    Dagmar, MT 59219