Montana Camping for the Family

Forest Preparing to Open Campgrounds by Memorial Day Weekend
By Moosetrack Megan

Posted: May 11, 2020

Hamilton, Montana – The Bitterroot National Forest staff is working hard to bring developed campgrounds back on line and most are projected to open by Memorial Day weekend.  Additionally, some of the less developed campgrounds, like Gold Creek and Black Bear campgrounds, will be open on May 8 but with limited services.  Rental facilities will begin a phased reopening on May 17, based on seasonal availability and facility conditions.  Until then, developed campgrounds and rentals remain temporarily closed.

This schedule of openings is closely in line with typical recreation site openings in past years.  Recreation crews are currently assessing sites and completing work that needs to be done prior to the sites opening.

Trails, trailheads, and day use sites remain open.  Please remember to avoid congregating at trailheads and/or parking areas and refrain from gathering in groups of 10 or more.  Services may also be limited in some areas, so visitors will be required to “Pack it in, pack it out.”

“We are looking forward to reopening these sites for public use and enjoyment.  Camping and recreating on National Forests is something individuals and families look forward to every summer,” said Matt Anderson, Forest Supervisor.  “We thank everyone for their patience as we work to reopen these sites and we continue to urge everyone to follow local, state, and federal guidelines on staying safe.”

Members of the public with existing reservations for rental cabins and lookouts through will be notified via email and/or cell phone text messages if there are any changes affecting their reservation. Please be aware that rentals and lookouts will not be cleaned in between use.  As in previous years, it is up to the individual renters to bring their own cleaning supplies and to clean before and after use of the site.

The Bitterroot National Forest continues to monitor the COVID-19 situation.  Please remember to review current recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention along with local and state guidelines for social distancing and cloth face coverings.

For information on projected recreation site opening dates and locations click here, call your local Ranger Station, or follow the Bitterroot National Forest on Facebook @DiscoverBitterrootNF.