Beaver Creek Park is the largest county park in the nation. Encompassing a 10,000-acre strip along the north slopes of the Bear Paw Mountains, this park is about one mile wide by seventeen miles long, located in a unique area of northcentral Montana.
Within this natural recreation area are rolling grasslands, pine woods, aspen and cottonwood groves, rocky cliffs, and cold rushing streams. The vegetation ranges from box elder, alder, willow, and buffalo berry on the north end to cottonwood, aspen, ponderosa pine, lodge pole pine, and Douglas fir on the south end.
Beaver Creek, Bear Paw Lake, and lower Beaver Creek Reservoir are well stocked with rainbow and brook trout, walleye, northern pike, bass, and perch. The park also abounds with wildlife such as whitetail and mule deer, bobcats, beavers, coyotes, foxes, mink, pheasants, grouse, golden eagles, and hawks.
Along with its varied flora and fauna, the park offers seemingly endless opportunities for recreation. You can camp by lake or stream; fishing at both is excellent! Picnicking is a major activity all through the summer, and you can hike or ride horses on maintained trails or cross country. The Bear Paw Nature Trail is an educational and scenic trek. Some people come to sightsee, take photographs, paint, or even just relax. There are children’s summer camps and cabin site leases. Winter activities include ice fishing, cross country skiing, snowshoeing, sledding, and some snowmobiling.
While a current Park Permit is required for all park use, Beaver Creek Park is open to all individuals for recreation and conservation purposes. It truly is one of the best kept secrets of the Hi-Line.
For more information, visit bcpark.org or call (406) 395-4565.