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Baldy Mountain

Difficult
 3.8 (4) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

A difficult, 10.7 mile out-and-back hike to Bozeman's closest major peak in the Bridger Range.


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Map Key

10.9

Miles

17.6

KM

Out and Back

8,831' 2,692 m

High

4,999' 1,524 m

Low

3,837' 1,170 m

Up

3,837' 1,169 m

Down

13%

Avg Grade (8°)

36%

Max Grade (20°)

Dogs Leashed

Features Views · Wildflowers

Overview

Climb almost 4,000 feet from the floor of the Gallatin Valley to the summit of Baldy Mountain. The route is long, steep, and exposed, so be prepared for a big day out—remember that you have to descend everything you climb, and that there are multiple false summits. Because the entire hike is along a ridge, the views are spectacular as the trail passes through patches of forest and wide open meadows full of summer wildflowers. But hiking along a ridge also means that there's not much shade so it can be hot, or it can be quite windy and cold.

Description

Start from the same parking as the College M Trail #511. If you want to begin the brutal climbing immediately, head left up the Bridger Ridge Trail #513 from the trailhead. For a mellower start, follow the College M Trail #511 until it reaches the ridge above the M and rejoins the Bridger Ridge Trail #513. From there, follow the Bridger Ridge Trail #513 until you reach the summit of Baldy Mountain.

The ridge is long and can be exposed to either harsh sun or relentless winds, so bring adequate water, sunscreen, and/or layers, depending on the weather. It would be quite difficult to get lost along this route because the M trails are all well-established, and the trail along ridge itself is prominent and easy to follow. As you ascend the ridge and pass treeline, be prepared for multiple disheartening false summits! The view from the top is excellent though, with town far below and the Gallatin Range in the distance.

Much of the trail is loose dirt or rocks, so be careful with your footing—especially on the descent. Because this is a popular route due to its proximity to town and its fantastic views, expect to encounter other hikers, especially around the M trails.

Flora & Fauna

Lots of wildflowers in the summer, and the occasional mountain goat as well.

Shared By:

Amber Scott

Trail Ratings

  3.8 from 4 votes

#4005

Overall
  3.8 from 4 votes
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Recommended Route Rankings

#86

in Montana

#4,005

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Photos

North bound along the ridge to Baldy
Aug 27, 2021 near Bozeman, MT
North bound along the ridge to Baldy.
Aug 27, 2021 near Bozeman, MT
North bound heading toward Baldy
Aug 27, 2021 near Bozeman, MT
Above the "M" Trail descending off the Bridger Ridge.
Apr 22, 2015 near Bozeman, MT
South Baldy slope looking north.
Jul 10, 2019 near Bozeman, MT
"Baldy Mountain View" by LunchboxLarry (https://tinyurl.com/s5pwq2x), Flickr licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/).
Nov 26, 2019 near Bozeman, MT

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Jun 17, 2021
Katie Fink
5.1mi — 2h 22m