The trail begins in the forest/meadow mix at the bottom of the valley near the Mokowanis River. It quickly begins gaining elevation on a southwestern aspect of a ridge off Bear Mountain. With every switchback, the trees begin to decrease and the views decrease. Views up the mountain have interesting cliffs and rock formations. The dry, rocky slopes you traverse are home to pines with distressed white bark, giving the trail an otherworldly feel.
Finally, you reach Bear Mountain Point which is a site of an old lookout. You can easily see why this spot was chosen, and your efforts are rewarded. Looking north along the steep cliffs of Bear Mountain have you looking to Canada as the Belly River snakes across an imaginary geopolitical line. To the east, the long ridge terminating to the iconic Chief Mountain
that is sacred to the Blackfeet Tribe. That ridge emanates from Gable Mountain where red bands at its base match red bands at the top of Chief Mountain
making sense of the geology from this perch.
To the south, Cosley Ridge towers your view across the glacier-carved Mokowanis River drainage which is filled with Cosley and Glenns lakes. A ring of stately and rugged peaks circle the head of the drainage including two 10,000ft peaks, Mt. Merritt and Glacier's roof, Mt. Cleveland.
Usually done as part of a backpacking trip, this trail is a great side trip, especially if camping at the Cosley Lake campground.
This content was created by Jake Bramante of Hike 734. Visit hike734.com
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Whitebark pines and low growing alpine shrubs such as shrubby penstemon and buckwheat. Birds include small alpine birds such as chickadees and white-crowned sparrows. Raptors soar up orographic lifts from below.