FATMAP by Strava

Maclay Flat Nature Trail

Get your nature fix on this easy and scenic stroll

Hiking Easy

2.9 km
6 m
7 m
0-1 hrs
Low Point
947 m
High Point
951 m
Maclay Flat Nature Trail Map

Hikes don't come much easier than this, so if you're looking to introduce your kids to the joys of human-powered trips, or just want a leisurely stroll in a peaceful spot - this is the walk for you. If you set off expecting an effortless stroll through some typically beautiful Montana countryside, you won't be disappointed.


The parking lot at Maclay Flat Nature Trail is only about 15 minutes from Missoula city centre, but the hike feels nicely remote and provides plenty of solitude. There's also a nice swimming spot where the trail meets the Bitterroot River, but there is a current, so only jump in if you're a confident swimmer and have assessed conditions. The river never gets truly warm, even in the height of summer, but it's nice enough for a 5 minute dip, doubly so on a super hot day.

The journey around Maclay Flat Nature Trail takes in a variety of scenery, from the river to dense forests and some open meadows too. From the meadows you'll be able to pick out a few of Missoula's notable hills, including Mount Sentinel and Mount Dean Stone.

In addition to the terrain there's flora and fauna to study, and a series of information boards to help you identify some of what you're looking at. The area around Maclay Flat Nature Trail is also rich in history and the information boards also contain some details on this.

The trail itself is flat, obvious and easy to follow, so navigation will not be a problem and you can focus on enjoying your stroll!



Walking along a well-kept trail that’s mostly flat. No obstacles are present.

Low Exposure

1 out of 4

The path is on completely flat land and potential injury is limited to falling over.


2 out of 4

Away from help but easily accessed.

Best time to visit

between March and October


  • Wildlife
  • Picturesque
  • Dog friendly
  • Wild flowers
  • Water features
  • Family friendly

Similar routes nearby

Guidebooks in this area