A local favorite for a quick, daily hike
The Drinking Horse Mountain trail is a 2.1 mile heavily trafficked loop trail that is known for the beautiful summer-time wildflowers and incredible views as you climb the wide, dog-friendly trail. Rated as a moderate hike, the trail gradually gains 700 feet in elevation. At the mouth of the Bridger Canyon this trail parking lot is across the road from the “M” trailhead. Situated close to town, Drinking Horse is a great alternative to the “M” with a different angle to enjoy the Gallatin Valley and the Bridgers.
Initially, the trail passes the Fish Technology Center leading you to a bridge over Bridger Creek. After passing the official trail arch, the trail comes to a fork. Either direction will lead to the summit, but the left puts hikers on a steeper route with multiple switchbacks and heavy shade, while the right fork, a more heavily used trail, is less steep and may take a little longer to reach the top. Breathtaking views of the Bridger range and Gallatin Valley greet you as you ascend to the top.
Round trip, this hike takes about an hour, but it is a great location for a picnic. During the wet and cold months, the trail can be muddy or icy, but is still a local favorite. The route to the right keeps hikers on the west-facing side of the hill, and tends to be a dryer and easier route during cold months.