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Start your New Year off right with a First Day Hike

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News from Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks

HELENA — Kick off the New Year right with a First Day Hike at a state park near you. On Jan. 1, Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks will host First Day Hikes at Flathead Lake State Park (Wayfarers, West Shore, and Lone Pine units), as well as other state parks throughout the state. Being immersed in nature has never been more important for your mental health and physical wellbeing. These fun and informative hikes are open to all ages and are family friendly.

Montana State Parks First Day Hikes are available at: 

Flathead Lake State Park (Big Arm, Wayfarers and West Shore Units) and Lone Pine State Park

Every time you hike, snowshoe, fat-tire bike, sled or cross-country ski a trail at one of these parks, log your miles at the trailhead to help lead your park to victory. At the end of the month, the participants with the most miles from each park will receive a prize. The competition will kick off on Jan. 1 and conclude on Jan. 31.

Flathead Lake State Park consists of six unique park units located around Flathead Lake, the largest natural freshwater lake west of the Mississippi. The park units on the east side are Wayfarers, Yellow Bay and Finley Point and the west side units are West Shore, Big Arm and Wild Horse Island. In addition to boating, swimming and fishing, each park unit offers unique winter views of the lake and its surrounding mountains and don’t forgot the wildlife viewing opportunities.

Lone Pine State Park is located 5 miles southwest of Kalispell and offers one of the most vivid views of the valley, 7.5 miles of trails, and a beautiful interpretive center that provides information on living in a wildlife urban interface. While out on the trails in January, a hiker may come across several different mammal tracks or birds that are toughing out the Montana winter.

Hikers should wear weather-appropriate clothing, bring a water bottle and ice cleats or snowshoes if the trail conditions are snowy or icy. First Day Hike participants are encouraged to share their adventures on social media with #FirstDayHikes. For more information on these or other Montana state parks, visit:

First Day Hikes is an annual, nationwide special event co-sponsored by America’s State Parks, which originated more than 25 years ago at the Blue Hills Reservation – a state park in Milton, Massachusettes. All 50 states will be participating in the tenth annual national event that encourages everyone to celebrate the New Year with guided outdoor exploration.


Sponsored by: