Fish Creek Trail No. 575 – Flathead Mtn

Please share any updates, or photos, in the comment section below

Fish Creek Trail # 575 Map(click here)

Length: 4.1-miles (one-way to Flattop Mountain)

Elevation Stats: Elevation Gain 2,688 ft. (8,775 ft to 11,463 ft) with Ascent 2,973 ft and Descent 285 ft

Trailhead Facilities: Parking Lot

Short Trail Summary: This trail is not a point-to-point hike. The middle section of the trail is unmarked on forest service maps as disputed public land or private land. Only the western segment of Fish Creek Trail is described.

Hiking to Flattop Mountain has an elevation gain of 3,000-feet, is secluded, occasionally steep and remarkable at the top.

To reach Fish Creek Trail begin your hike at the Opal Lake Trailhead and follow that description for the first .9-miles. Veer to the east at the marked junction on a faint trail that soon enters an aspen stand. After 1.7-miles the trail begins a more assertive climb via switchbacks to an unmarked saddle. Pick a northerly direction on an unmaintained, but sometimes easy to find, trail to the top of the ridge and the true summit of Flattop Mountain at 11,463-feet. There is a summit register.

Directions: From US 160/US 84 junction, turn south onto US 84. Travel 8-miles and turn northeast onto Blanco Basin Road (CR 326), a gravel road. After 9.5-miles turn south onto FS 600 (Castle Creek Road). Continue for 3.3-miles to FR 023 (Opal Lake Road). Turn south and continue an additional .7-mile to the trailhead.

Driving Directions Map (click here)

4 thoughts on “Fish Creek Trail No. 575 – Flathead Mtn

  1. As of May 22, 2018 the Fish Creek Trail has been opened/cleared by San Juan Back Country Horsemen from the Opal Lake area southward for about one mile. The group intends to work with Fish Creek Outfitters over Memorial Day weekend to clear the trail further south toward the Leche Creek Trail junction, and on southward toward the V-Rock area.


  2. Best info I have is that 3 miles of the trail has been cleared from the trailhead by the San Juan Backcountry Horsemen thanks to Mike Pluth


  3. Rob, thanks. Frankly, I do not know for sure which sections of trail are which in the Opal Lake area, will try to get it cleared up. This is due, I think, to Opal Lake area trails on maps being labeled different names – for example the trail that leads from the Opal Lake area south that is referred to in this year’s clearing work: our group (SJBCH) has been calling that trail from Opal Lake to the Leche Creek Trail junction “Fish Creek Trail”. Some maps seem to indicate it that way, but some call that section of trail the “V Rock Trail”. Regarding the part of Fish Creek Trail that goes eastward from the Opal Lake area (uphill) and passes through private land, it is my understanding that that section of trail has been abandoned since there is no public right of way through the private land portion of the trail, and the Forest Service has been unable to relocate the trail onto public land due to the steep terrain. So the three miles of trail referred to above are, I understand, the section of trail leading from the Opal Lake area to the Leche Creek Trail junction. Hope that helps.


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