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Crater Mountain, MT | June, 2017

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 0.25 miles, 374 ft

Crater Mountain is a quick, but rewarding off-trail hike.  The summit has nice 360-degree views, including the Scapegoat Wilderness to the North.  Trailhead access is suitable for most vehicles so long as it isn’t too snowy.  This would also make a nice winter summit – with an additional 2.6 miles of skiing from Stemple Pass – much of which is along the “North Meadow Loop” ski trail.

Directions (From Stemple Pass – North of Helena):

·         Drive northeast 0.6 miles on FS-1827

·         Turn left (north) & drive 1.9 miles on FS-1825.  The road will pass through an open saddle before entering the trees and passing a turn-off to the left (don’t take this road).  It will eventually begin grading downwards to a fork with two USFS gates.  Park at a wide spot in the road just before (west of) the fork.

·         Hike past the upper (left) gate, and climb the hill to the summit.  Bushwacking can be kept to a minimum if you initially keep to the right on the ascent, then sweep to the left & ascend through the open meadows.