Posted By The Success Fisherman

Beartooth Pass


Beartooth Pass (10,947 feet) was once referred to as “the most beautiful drive in America” by Charles Kuralt. It is a destination of its own because there is some absolutely spectacular scenery to be found there.

Located south of Red Lodge, it is one of the main routes to Yellowstone National Park.

Shortly after leaving Red Lodge heading south the canyon narrows and the scenery starts becoming some of the best in Montana and it gets better and better as you head up and over the pass.

One of the prominent features along the highway is “The Bear’s Tooth” which you can see below.




You dip into Wyoming for a stretch and then the road leads back into Montana and soon after Cooke City and then the North East Entrance to the park.

In between the pass and the park there is an area known as the Beartooth Plateau which has some of the best hiking and backpacking in Montana. There are numerous lakes in the area with many of them unnamed.

It seems as though you come across a new lake every time you go over a hill there and the views are incredible.

Below is a picture taken from around 10,000 feet in the Beartooth Plateau. The lake in the foreground doesn’t have a name and Granite Lake is in the background.

To get to Beartooth Pass you could head south out of Red Lodge on Highway 212 or you could come up from Wyoming via the Chief Joseph Highway, also known as the Sunlight Basin Road, also known as State Highway 296 and then take a right when you come to Highway 212. Or you could go through Yellowstone Park and then leave through the North East Entrance to Cooke City and then follow Highway 212 to the pass.

The video below was taken June 11, 2011 the day after the pass was opened for the year. (video is 5 times normal speed)




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