Sunday ยท February 4, 2024
Owl Creek Packer Camp Trailhead: Gateway to Wilderness Equestrian Adventures
Author: Admin
Owl Creek Packer Camp in Montana | Top Horse Trails

In the rugged landscapes of Montana, where the call of the wild echoes through pristine forests, the Owl Creek Packer Camp Trailhead emerges as a haven for those seeking equestrian adventures into the heart of nature. This trailhead, strategically positioned across from the Owl Creek Packer Camp, serves as the gateway to Trail #35, a route that winds through the scenic south side of Holland Lake, leading intrepid riders to Upper Holland Lake and the vast expanse of the Bob Marshall Wilderness.

Trail #35: A Wilderness Odyssey

Trail #35, accessible from this trailhead, is a lifeline into the untamed beauty of Montana. This trail weaves through the captivating landscapes around Holland Lake and intersects with trails #415, #120, and #110, forming a network that invites exploration. A favorite among outfitters and those traversing the Bob Marshall Wilderness, be prepared for encounters with stock animals and trail conditions that bear the imprints of both adventure and, at times, the challenges of muddy terrains.

Camp in the Wild: First-Come, First-Serve

Eight secluded campsites await the intrepid at Owl Creek Packer Camp Trailhead. With a first-come, first-serve arrangement, these spots offer more than a place to pitch a tent. Each site is equipped with a picnic table, a fire ring, and access to communal water and feed stations, catering to the needs of both the riders and their noble steeds.

Owl Creek Corral: A Reserve for Wilderness Sojourns

For those seeking a more tailored experience, the Owl Creek Corral, nestled at the trailhead, is available for reservation, extending the wilderness stay to up to seven days. With a maximum capacity of 12 head of stock, this corral is not just a stable; it's a sanctuary in the midst of Montana's backcountry. Metal hay bunks and a water trough are thoughtful additions, ensuring the comfort of the equine companions.

The Owl Creek Packer Camp Trailhead isn't just a starting point for a wilderness journey; it's an invitation to embark on an odyssey into the rugged charm of Montana's untamed landscapes. Here, where the scent of pine mingles with the earthy aroma of the trail, riders find solace, adventure, and the timeless allure of the great outdoors. Come, and discover the Owl Creek Packer Camp Trailhead—an equestrian gateway to the wild heart of Montana.


From Highway 83 turn east onto Holland Lake Road #44 near mile marker 35. After 2.5 miles, turn right on Owl Loop Road #9558. Go about 0.5 miles and turn right on Road #10121 to Owl Creek Packer Camp. The camp entrance is located on the right, where parking is available. The trail leaves on the left, across the road from the Packer Camp entrance.


Owl Creek Packer Camp offers the following facilities and amenities:

  • Parking Area
  • Horse Stall/Corral
  • Horse Hitching Post
  • Equestrian trails
  • Metal hay bunk
  • Metal water trough
  • Picnic table
  • Fire ring
  • Communal use of water
  • Feed stations
  • Vault toilet
  • Potable water


The main corral is 65 ft. x 65 ft. It is a 5-railed, steel pipe corral with metal hay bunks as well as a metal water trough. There is a smaller area located behind the main corral measuring 42 ft. x 20 ft. where you could separate stock or keep hay. The corral is located in the Swan Valley, just south of Holland Lake at an elevation of 4,200 feet. The corral backs up to a stand of mixed conifers, including lodgepole pine and Douglas fir trees.


Cost Details:

  • $20 per night



  • There is one corral for public use. It is the corral near the cabin. It can be reserved online at Camping is first-come, first-serve.
  • Drinking water is only available from May 20 to Nov. 15; outside this time frame, guests will need to bring their own water
  • Grizzly bears frequent the area; use appropriate containers for food and garbage
  • All hay and feed brought onto public lands must be certified weed-free
  • Contact the ranger district office at (406) 837-7500, during normal office hours (Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.) for updates on weather and road conditions; refunds will not be given for inclement weather or road conditions
  • The corral remains locked; a combination lock code will be contained in the reservation confirmation letter
  • Same-day reservations can be made by calling the Swan Lake Ranger Station during business hours at (406) 837-7500 and making a credit card payment.
  • Commercial use of corral is prohibited


If you want to discover and explore other campsites and horse trails, here are some of them that you may visit:





Owl Creek Packer Camp does not require reservations for overnight accommodations. Please visit their page here on Top Horse Trails - Owl Creek Packer Camp for more information