Elk Mountain Trail

This reflects the 10Adventures difficulty rating for each route. We aim to keep ratings consistent across regions.
This reflects the estimated time the majority of users will take on this trail. If you are slower, add time to the top-end figure. If you are fast, then you may complete this route faster than this time range.
This reflects the return distance of this route as measured by the GPS file.
11.6 km
This reflects the total elevation gained throughout this route as measured by the GPS file. This includes all ascents and descents, and is higher than what is quoted in most route guides, which simply measure the distance between the starting-point and high-point of the route.
1,013 m
User Ratings
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Directions to Trailhead

Elk Mountain Trail is a challenging hike completely uphill that will test your abilities. After a long and steep hike, you will come to an open area where views of the Southern end of Glacier National Park, the Great Bear Wilderness, and the plains and Blackfeet Reservation come into view. As you ascend higher, you will summit at the top, and you can take in stunning views of the surrounding area, and Mount St. Nicholas will appear.

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Route Description for Elk Mountain Trail

This is a popular trail among more experienced hikers as it is a steep incline all the way to the summit. The hike begins at Fielding Coal Creek Trailhead, and you continue along here until you reach a set of train tracks at 1.6 km deep.

At 1.1 miles in, you will see the Patrol Cabin, and just 0.2 km further will be the trailhead for Elk Mountain Trail. Continue to ascend, and you will come upon the summit at 6.0 km. Take in the spectacular views of the surrounding mountains and when you are finished, head back the way you came as this is an out and back trail.

Find more epic hikes in Glacier National Park

Getting to the Elk Mountain Trail Trailhead

To get to Elk Mountain Trail from Essex, head northeast on Izaak Walton Rd/Izaak Walton Inn Rd toward US-2 West for 1.0 km. Turn right onto US-2 East and reach your final destination at 20.8 km.

Route Information

  • When to do

    April - October

  • Backcountry Campsites


  • Pets allowed


  • Family friendly


  • Route Signage


  • Crowd Levels


  • Route Type

    Out and back

Elk Mountain Trail Elevation Graph

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Elk Mountain Trail Reviews

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