MT • Swan Mountain Outfitters

Explore the majestic Swan Valley, Bob Marshall Wilderness, and Glacier National Park with the largest outfitter in the west. This outfitter specializes in a variety of Montana adventures, such as horseback riding, fishing, llama treks, wagon rides, snowmobiling and guided hunts.

Location

Swan Mountain Outfitters operates in several locations throughout northwest Montana. Often referred to as “glacier country,” this area is very mountainous and densely forested with no sagebrush. Due to the high concentration of protected wilderness areas, deer are among the most commonly spotted wildlife but elk, moose, mountain goats, bighorn sheep, wolves, grizzly and black bears are also frequently seen.

Swan Valley: the Base Camp/Swan Valley Corral is located in the heart of the Rocky Mountains between the Swan Mountain Range and the Mission Mountain Range forming the western edge of the Continental Divide.

Flathead National Forest: both Base Camp and the West Glacier Corral are located on Flathead National Forest, which is home to Flathead Lake, the largest freshwater lake west of the Mississippi River, among other treasures.

Bob Marshall Wilderness: the Upper Camp is at the western edge of the Bob Marshall Wilderness, an alpine wilderness of 1.5 million acres encompassing areas within the Flathead National Forest, the Lewis and Clark National Forest, Lolo National Forest and the Helena National Forest.

Glacier National Park: the Apgar, Lake McDonald and Many Glacier Corrals are located within Glacier National Park. With its jutting mountains, twisting valleys, cascading waterfalls, thick forests and more than 200 lakes covering some 1.2 million acres, Glacier is one of the most popular attractions in northwest Montana. 

Trail Rides

Swan Mountain Outfitters offers everything from a two hour trail ride to an overnight trek, depending on the location you choose to ride out of. Their trail riding system consists of over 50 miles of well maintained trails, many of which are in the high country. Short duration rides in Glacier National Park are perfect for beginners whereas longer duration/backcountry rides allow experienced riders to enjoy challenging terrain, breathtaking scenery, and views which are simply awe-inspiring.

Pack Trips: three to six day wilderness pack trips into the Bob Marshall Wilderness. Summer pack trips combine luxury camping with wilderness and wildlife viewing.  

Hunting Trips: a variety of guided hunting trips for archery and rifle hunters alike, including traditional deer and elk horseback hunts in the backcountry and in the front range of the Swan Mountains in outfitter camps. 

Guides

The staff is composed of seasoned experts who have decades of experience in guiding, outfitting, equine and outdoorsmanship.

At the beginning of your adventure, you will receive a safety briefing in the basics of horsemanship from your guide. Your safety and well being are a primary concern, so instruction will not only cover riding skills, but also specific wilderness riding precautions.

Horses

Swan Mountain Outfitters utilizes over 225 head during peak operating season. The herd has a large variety of breeds including halflingers, registered Paint and Quarter Horses and half drafts. All animals are selected for their calm disposition and athleticism necessary for mountain trail riding.

In addition to the horses, about a quarter of the Swan Mountain Outfitters herd is composed of mules. Many of the mules are broke to both ride and pack, but are primarily used for packing. These incredible, sure footed animals are responsible for getting all the hay, food and equipment to the upper camp during the summer pack trips.

Whether you are a novice or experienced rider, your guide will match you with a horse that suits your skill level and personality.

Additional Activities

Fly fishing: half and full day guided fly fishing float trips down Swan River. You can also book a fly fishing-focused pack trip in the Bob Marshall Wilderness, fly fishing lessons and clinics, and fly and spin cast daily fishing excursions throughout the Swan Valley.  

Wagon Rides: you can go for horse drawn wagon rides and Beef N Buggy rides, which is a wagon ride and steak dinner combination. The horse drawn wagon rides are a great option for families with children that are too young to ride or other groups that are interested in getting out and seeing the sights, but are not capable or comfortable doing it on horseback.  

Wilderness Guide School: 4-5 week outdoor guide course to become a big game hunting guide. Additional one week courses are offered for hunter and adventurer training, wrangler training, and packer training. Swan Mountain Outfitters offers additional certificates beyond your diploma in Bow Hunting Safety Education and Wilderness First Aid.

Llama Treks: strong and gentle, quiet and agile, llamas are the perfect companion for a backpacking trip into Montana’s Glacier Country. With their padded foot, cleanliness, calm nature and ability to browse on a variety of vegetation, llamas have no more impact in the high country than a deer. Whether you only have 2-hours or if you are planning a multi-day Trek, this is a great family activity for a summer vacation.

Snowmobiling: choose from a wide range of guided snowmobiling tours including two hour, half day and full day tours. You can also rent a top-of-the-line snowmobile that was selected for comfort and safety. The sleds are turned every two years, which means you’ll get the benefit of a brand new snowmobile with all the latest technology and features.

Accommodations

Belton Chalet, Historic Tamarack Lodge & Cabins, Great Northern Resort: stay at any one of these historic hotels or cabins and schedule a customized activity package, such as a two hour horseback ride at any Swan Mountain Outfitters stable, a half day (three to four hour) white water rafting trip, and a red bus tour of the Park, and top it off with a Swan Mountain Llama Trekking day trek.

 


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