“A somewhat primitive mountain trail southeast of Bozeman.”
Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife
Although the trail is somewhat primitive, and you'll have to deal with a steady climb to the top of Mt Ellis, the unique view of the Gallatin Valley from the south make this run well worth it.
The singletrack portion of the trail is steep in certain sections so watch your footing.
Park at the end of Mt. Ellis lane. The trail begins on the other side of the cattle gate. Start your ascent up a gravel road through an open field to an old logging road that begins as you enter the trees (1 mi). The first three miles along this road climb steadily, but won't be too steep.
After a couple of miles of steady climbing, a singletrack marked by a cairn starts up towards Little Ellis from the right side of the road. Follow the steep fall-line trail to the first prominence (Little Ellis), then continue south on the ridge to the summit of Mt. Ellis. This route provides a unique view of the Gallatin Valley from the south so be sure to take a short break at the top to enjoy the views before heading back down the way you came.
Flora & Fauna
The first couple of miles pass through pasture and rangeland. Watch out for cattle and make sure to close the gates.