The exotic beauty of the surrounding scenery as you gaze down from Stahl Lookout could not be accurately depicted even by the eclectic mind of Dr. Seuss.
Located very near the Ten Lakes Wilderness Area, the trailhead to Stahl Peak is located up Grave Creek Road off of Highway 93. Follow this road, forest service road 114, until it forks. Take the left fork onto road 7021. This road will dead end at the beginning of the trail, which was previously an access point for loggers. Now closed to that industry, the old road is a wide, grassy trail that meanders through four lazy switchbacks before narrowing to a rocky footpath. The first 1.25 miles lend easy walking, with small rises in elevation. Dense trees and innumerable wildflowers combine with abundant huckleberry bushes to provide optimal lighting for photos beneath the foliage. Be sure to capture the scarlet shades of Indian Paintbrush, sunny golden hues of Glacier Lilies, and take in the distinguished smell of Bear Grass.
Totaling three miles to the lookout, the last three-quarters of the trail is where the climb begins. As you continue upward, the trees open to phenomenal views of the backside of Therriault Pass, revealing the sheer rock faces that create the jagged gap between peaks.
The last 1/4 mile will have you wanting to stop as all the scenery overwhelms and begs for photos. Once you summit, the views expand beyond any ordinary mountaintop. To one side of the lookout you will find the peaks of Glacier National Park proudly rising in the distance. On the backside of the structure is a small gem of teal water, a lake untouchable due to the extreme slopes surrounding. Beyond the lake are Ksanka Peak and the mountaintops of Canada.
Drink your fill of the fresh mountain air, exquisite views, and memorable journey and be sure to sign your name in the Stahl Lookout Guestbook before heading down the mountain.
This submission is courtesy of Jonna Yost, former Eureka resident and current Gonzaga University student.
Hwy 93 to Grave Creek Road to Stahl Road
Eureka, Montana 59917
USFS Murphy Lake
406-296-2536 for more info