Where’s all the snow?

November is a month of change. Warm, fall days abruptly end as snow creeps down Big Mountain, and the trail tools eventually find their winter resting spots. November robs an hour of post-work sunlight and also creates a seemingly endless limbo as we await ski season. The lack of snow is allowing Whitefish Trail enthusiasts to take a few more natural surface walks, runs, or bike rides before ice and snow take over the tread. Soon trail users will wear traction devices and parts of the trail will be inaccessible until March.

Currently, all of the 11 trailheads are accessible on clear roads. Logging has started at Spencer Mountain, and the Twin Bridges trailhead is closed Monday-Friday to accommodate equipment and trucks. As a reminder during winter months, there are only 4 trailheads that are consistently plowed:

  • Lion Mountain, Swift Creek, Beaver Lakes, & Twin Bridges

South Spencer is occasionally plowed by a generous neighbor, and Flathead County may clear two spots at the access road to Lupfer. We will post current winter trail conditions, so check back for updates.

The trail is currently experiencing a freeze-thaw cycle, not unlike spring. In the morning, moist areas of the tread are frozen solid, and by the afternoon, the trail has softened considerably. Trail use has dropped 50% from peak summer season, and dedicated mountain bikers are enjoying empty trails in the Beaver Lakes area. Lion Mountain continues to see consistent use from dog walkers and runners, and the snowy views from the Swift Creek overlook are superb.

Sneak out of work early and squeeze in one last excursion on the Whitefish Trail before the ski lifts start turning next week.