Geological Significance · River/Creek · Views · Wildflowers
This route is a moderately challenging, 5.0 mile out-and-back to the summit of Storm Castle. South of Bozeman, near the northern terminus of the Gallatin Canyon, this run is a great option for a solid climb leading to great views and interesting rock formations. Parking is little bit limited, and this is a popular route, so be prepared to go early or late, or park along the road.
Need to Know
This area is known for ticks—check yourself and your running companions (human or dog) thoroughly when you're done!
The Storm Castle Trailhead is easily accessible off of Highway 191. Turn east onto Storm Castle Road and immediately cross over the Gallatin River. Continue down Storm Castle Road for 2.0 miles, and a dirt pullout and the trailhead will be on the left. Storm Creek Road is gated below the trailhead during the winter, so for early to mid-spring runs, just park down the road at the gate and follow the road the rest of the way to the trailhead. While much of the trail is south-facing, it doesn't melt out uniformly, so be ready for snow and ice when running in fall, winter, and spring.
From the trailhead, the Storm Castle Mountain Trail #92
begins climbing immediately. The trail switchbacks steadily up the mountainside, passing through some patches of forest, but largely traversing open and exposed hillsides and meadows—this exposure, in combination with the south-facing slope, makes this a hot trail in the summer, so prepare accordingly with timing and adequate water.
As the trail nears the summit, the switchbacks get tighter—while it might be tempting to scramble over the limestone and cut the switchbacks, please respect the area and stay on the trail! The final stretch passes through dense forest before emerging upon the outcroppings that constitute the summit. The rocks make for a great spot to snack and enjoy the views of Garnet Mountain to the south and Storm Castle Creek and the Gallatin River bellow. There's a neat rock arch as well, and some fun scrambling opportunities—just be careful around the steep edges of the bluff!
Shared By: Amber Scott