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Bigfork, Montana Area Chamber of Commerce

Swan River Nature Trail

Before it empties into mighty Flathead Lake, the final mile of the Swan River cascades over rocks and boulders, creating what is known as the “Wild Mile”.  Spring snowmelt creates class III and IV rapids for more than 200 kayakers who come to compete in May’s annual Whitewater Festival. And now, with a weekly release of water every Wednesday, whitewater enthusiasts can enjoy the Wild Mile throughout the summer.

But thanks to the Swan River Nature Trail, you don’t have to get soaking wet to enjoy the rushing water. By taking to the trail everyone has the opportunity to enjoy the beauty of the Swan River and its Wild Mile.  The trail begins near Grand Drive in Bigfork and follows an old road last that follows the river for about two miles to the Kearney Rapids Bridge. This is an easy trail enjoyed by hikers, bikers and horseback riders in the summer and on skis or snowshoes in the winter.

In May and June, Anne Moreley of the Flathead Native Plant Society and Neil Brown of the Audubon Society will lead weekly nature hikes every Tuesday from 10 am until noon. Naturalists tell us that the route travels through three different plant communities (meadowland, woodland and wetland) so there’s always plenty to see and photograph.

If you want to add a little history to your ramble, we recommend taking a few Paces to the Past.  That’s what we call the Bigfork Village Historical Walk. While no one ever truly needs an excuse for shopping, we recommend you pick up one of the historic brochures as you stroll through the galleries and shops of Bigfork Village. Each pace is designated with a small sign on the building that corresponds with a paragraph and photo in the brochure.

To learn more about Bigfork and all it has to offer, visit www.bigfork.org.  Media queries may be directed to Carol Beck-Edgar at edgecomm@montanasky.us. 406-837-2061.


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