Often described as the crown jewel of the Helena National Forest, the hike to Crow Creek Falls is a perfect day trip with the family, or a short adventure for frequent hikers. The trail is an easy out and back 6-mile hike along Crow Creek, with a few steep inclines that even children can navigate.
After hikers park at the Jump Off Trailhead, the trail begins with a descent down to Crow Creek and over a narrow wooden bridge. The first mile and a half takes hikers up a small valley along the creek. Large pines and thick vegetation frame the trail as it slowly begins to gain in elevation.
Crow Creek features a few fishing opportunities, but don’t expect to catch anything big. Brook, brown, and rainbow trout inhabit the creek.
A steep but short climb takes hikers away from the creek and up to a wide meadow filled with wildflowers and lush grasses. The meadow is a popular break spot for families with children.
A couple of small ridgelines take hikers into the surrounding coniferous forest. Chirps from a range of different bird species can be heard from within the tree canopy.
At mile three, the trail sharply descends down to the waterfall. Loose rock and gravel make this the most difficult hiking section.
The 40-foot waterfall is one of only three in the region, making it a destination for hikers in the Helena area. A few days of recent rains, combined with the spring runoff make the falls particularly spectacular in the spring. At the base of the falls the water cascades into a large pool of water perfect for a refreshing mid-hike swim in the summer.