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Peak 3976 (Tower Rock), MT | April, 2017

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(0.6 miles, 500 feet)

This is a short climb that is located immediately adjacent to I-15 south of Great Falls.  It was first climbed by Merriweather Lewis on July 16, 1805.  Lewis described it as follows:

“at this palce there is a large rock of 400 feet high wich stands immediately in the gap which the missouri makes on it's passage from the mountains; it is insulated from the neighbouring mountains by a handsome little plain which surrounds it base on 3 sides and the Missouri washes it's base on the other, leaving it on the Lard. as it decends.    this rock I called the tower.  it may be ascended with some difficulty nearly to it's summit, and from it there is a most pleasing view of the country we are now about to leave.    from it I saw this evening immence herds of buffaloe in the plains below.“

Take the Hardy Exit (Exit 247) from I-15 & park in the parking area for Tower Rock State Park.  There is a $6.00 day-use fee for non-residents, or for those Montana residents that “opted out” of the optional State Parks fee when licensing your vehicle.

Walk through the fence and head south along the trail.  The trail will continue southwards, and then begin ascending towards the ridge crest.  Leave the main trail as it crosses a small gully and follow the faint path up the gully to the west side of the summit rock.  The base of the cliffs is about elevation 3,928 – well within the activation zone.