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Featured National Recreation Trails

A sampling of National Recreation Trails in the news or recently designated. The NRT program showcases the diversity of trails across America, from our cities and suburbs to the deserts, waterways, and high mountains.


National Recreation Trails... America's great trails!

Every kind of trail activity is represented in the listing of designated NRTs. Besides hiking and bicycling, the system includes water trails, motorized routes, snow tracks, greenways, and equestrian paths.

arrowSearch all of Montana's designated National Recreation Trails in the Online NRT Database


map of Montana

photo of trail and cottonwood trees

Display Pond Trail in Bowdoin National Wildlife Refuge

Drinking Horse Mountain Trail A unique covered bridge serves as a beautiful gateway for this 2.2 mile trail near Bozeman. Climbing 700 feet from Bridger Creek through diverse vegetation and terrain to the summit of Drinking Horse Mountain, the figure-eight loop trail has a steep route for those who desire more intense aerobic exercise and an easier path for those who seek a leisurely stroll. Eight memorial benches and one memorial picnic table offer scenic vistas of the Gallatin Valley, Bridger Canyon, and surrounding mountain ranges (designated 2010).


Danny On National Recreation Trail Located near Whitefish, Montana on the Tally Lake Ranger District of the Flathead National Forest this popular trail can be reached by chairlift. Despite its popularity, it offers an aesthetically rewarding hiking experience. The trail is designed to offer six different hikes of various difficulty.


Display Pond Trail Located in the Bowdoin National Wildlife Refuge, this 0.4-mile accessible, walking trail allows visitors of all ages and abilities to experience the outdoors and view a diversity of wildlife (designated 2007).


Garnet Winter National Recreation Trail A 32-mile snow trail through the Garnet Mountain range open to snowmobilers, skiers, and dogsledders.


Lee Metcalf NWR Wildlife Viewing Trail This wildlife viewing trail extends over 2 miles in Lee Metcalf National Wildlife Refuge (NWR), one of the largest publicly owned riparian properties in the Bitterroot Valley. The refuge hosts approximately 150,000 people each year; and the trail is an integral part of the visitor experience. Trail users enjoy a variety of outdoor activities, including wildlife observation, snowshoeing, and fishing. This scenic trail will eventually serve as a trailhead for the Bitterroot Birding and Nature Trail, the first trail of its kind in Montana (designated 2005).

photo of boardwalk in marsh

Prairie-Marsh Boardwalk on Benton Lake National Wildlife Refuge

(photo by Diane Rae)

Pacific Northwest Trail (PNT), Glacier National Park Segment This nearly 65-mile trail is a piece of a continuous 1,200-mile trail route that links the Continental Divide National Scenic Trail (NST) and Pacific Crest NST with the Pacific Ocean. This section of the trail is significant, because it provides access to the park's diverse flora and fauna and takes users through a variety of natural settings, from high mountain alpine meadows and glaciers to forests. In addition to its many scenic features, the trail also provides a number of recreational opportunities including hiking, biking, horseback riding, and certain types of motorized vehicle use. The trail is supported by the efforts of the Pacific Northwest Trail Association (designated 2005).


Prairie-Marsh Boardwalk This boardwalk trail offers a unique nature walk that transitions from shortgrass native prairie to a nationally-significant wetland ecosystem. The Benton Lake National Wildlife Refuge is home to an array of wildlife; and the boardwalk provides an excellent opportunity to observe the wealth of plant communities, shorebirds, and mammals. Although just a small piece (less than a half mile long) of the Refuge itself, the boardwalk is a key part of the visitor experience (designated 2005).


trail noteWe frequently add NRT information, photos and maps to these pages. Send suggestions and information requests to American Trails. Research additional NRTs in the NRT database.

See how to update online trail information in the National Recreation Trails online database or send changes by e-mail to



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The on-line database has details on the currently designated National Recreation Trails. The NRT Program online is hosted by American Trails:


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