In Montana, the elk, deer and antelope populations outnumber the humans.
Bitterroot National Forest
The 1.6 million acre Bitterroot National Forest is located in west central Montana and east central Idaho. The Bitterroot National Forest is part of the Northern Rocky Mountains. Elevations range from 3,200 feet at the north end to 10,157 at Trapper Peak in the mountains to the south. The Bitterroot Forest is home to many different species of wildlife including mule deer, bighorn sheep, mountain goats, moose and black bear as well as a variety of smaller animals and birds.
For recreational opportunities people can camp at eighteen developed campgrounds, hike or ride on more than 1,600 miles of trails, fish, hunt, raft, boat, kayak, mountain bike, rock climb and cross county ski to name a few.
This information was provided by the US Forest Service website. For more information please visit www.fs.fed.us/r1/bitterroot/about
Rattlesnake National Forest
The Rattlesnake’s major trailhead is located 4.5 miles north of Missoula. There is 61,000 acres of glaciated topography in the Rattlesnake National Recreation Area. This forest helps to form Montana’s premier urban wilderness. The Rattlesnake basin is fed by more than fifty small creeks and resting in the wilderness is more than thirty high mountain lakes.
Day use is by far the dominant form of recreation, primarily due to an increase in use by joggers and mountain bikers. Hunting and fishing are the traditional uses of the Rattlesnake Wilderness. When snow conditions permit, the main Rattlesnake and side drainages are readily accessible to cross-country skiers.
The lower half of the Rattlesnake provides a well established trail system allowing for opportunities for day trips. For longer trips overnight camping is allowed beyond the 3-mile radius from the Rattlesnake’s main trail head.
This information was provided by the Official State Travel Information website: www.visitmt.com
Always enjoy wildlife from the safety of your car or from a safe distance. Do not approach wildlife to take photographs. Visitors on occasion get too close to wildlife in order to get a picture. Sadly, injuries have occurred as a result. Use a telephoto lens instead. This will not only ensure your safety, but the safety of the animal.
Ticks are most active in spring and early summer and through ticks several serious diseases can be transmitted like Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever. Completely remove attached ticks and disinfect the site. If rashes or lesions form around the bite, or if unexplained symptoms occur, consult a physician.
This information was provided by the Glacier National Park Visitor Centers website. For more information on encountering wildlife please visit www.nps.gov/glac/planyourvisit/wildlifesafety.htm