For centuries, Salish-Kootenai Indians used the largest Island in Flathead Lake to keep their horses safe from the raids of other tribes. Today the Montana State Park is home to a herd of wild horses, Big Horn sheep, Mule Deer and Bald Eagles. An hour or two on a hiking trail accessible to almost anyone who is ambulatory is bound to provide for numerous opportunities to view and photograph wildlife. If you’re lucky, you may even run across the six often elusive wild horses that provide the island’s name. In addition to hiking, Wild Horse Island is ideal for a picnic and an afternoon of swimming. Family members of all ambitions and abilities will enjoy the time spent on this state park. It’s accessible only by boat. Spring, Summer and Fall trips can be booked from Big Fork, just minutes from Meadow Lake’s Rocky Bar O lake front lodge. Boat shuttles are also available from Big Arm MT, the closest town to the Island.

Recommended Time: Half Day

Distance: Big Arm Boat Shuttle is an hour drive from Meadow Lake Resort. Big Fork is 40 minutes

Cost: The state park is free. The trip to Island costs $40 per person round trip from Big Arm. The Big Fork service offers custom pricing. Call for details.

Recommended Attire: Layers, water gear for splashes if traveling from Big Fork, and hiking and swimming appropriate.

Intensity: Moderate impact hiking. Fun for the entire family.

More Information: Contact Meadow Lake Resort Activities Desk (800) 321-4653

Big Arm Shuttle: 406.260.5090

BigFork: Wild Horse Island Boat Trips: 406.837.5617