Sourdough Trail

4Runner Fun

Along Hyalite Creek

Saturday, September 18, 1993

After a night of drinking at Spanish Peaks, Jim Getting and I finally found a campsite along the reservoir at 2 a.m.

We woke to a heavy frost and found that we had camped in the group picnic area at Hood Creek.

Had a big meal of hash browns and pancakes and packed up camp. Got Jim a mountain bike at Summit Bike in Bozeman (a Kona with shocks for $12/day). We took the guy's recommendation and rode 5 miles up the Sourdough trail until the bridge.

Great ride, great weather. Camped the night at Swan Creek campground.


Sunday, September 19, 1993

Swan Creek is a nice campground, not too busy.

After breakfast, we drove Forest Road 3108 over Garnet Mt. Ridge. Lots of nice meadows, great views, some logging. We continued the drive to the trailhead leading to Rat Lake.

We rode our bikes there, but we easily could have hiked because it was no more than a mile. Tried fishing it, but the trout wouldn't bite. Still, a nice calm lake.

Moved camp to a roadside area next to the Gallatin south of Red Cliff campground. Fished the river and caught one nice rainbow, but didn't land it. This section was nearly continuous riffles with few pools.


Monday, September 20, 1993

Right away, we returned Jim's bike and headed back to Hyalite Reservoir.

We found a campsite near the Hyalite Lake trailhead. Best campsite of the trip; great views of mountains and a beautiful stream bed area.

Saw lots of trout in the water so decided to spend the rest of the day fishing and messing around. Caught two rainbows and two browns in a small pool just steps from camp. One of each was over 12 inches. They were easily spooked but would take a royal wulff and an elk hair caddis when the evening feeding time came around. At other times, they wouldn't take a thing. Ate them all for dinner - very tasty.


Tuesday, September 21, 1993

Around mid-day we took a hike up to Grotto Falls and Arch Falls. Both were very nice.

On the way to the falls, came nearly face to face with a big moose with a rack. We followed it a litle further upstream where Jim got some nice photos of it. Then, it took off into the forest never to be seen again.

This was probably the highlight of the trip; both our hearts were pounding with excitement.

After weighing the costs of getting up to get Jim to the airport by 7:30 a.m., we decided to pack it in, visit Spanish Peaks, get a motel room and take some needed showers.


Wednesday, September 22, 1993

Dropped Jim off at the airport at 6:00 and drove back to Great Falls and work.


Beer of Choice

Rat Lake