Hungry Horse Reservoir

Quick Facts

Hungry Horse Reservoir

Montana

(406) 755-5401

Map Directions

Things To Do

Overview

Hungry Horse Dam is on the South Fork of the Flathead River, 15 miles south of the west entrance to Glacier National Park and 20 miles northeast of Kalispell, Montana. The dam site is in a deep, narrow canyon. Hungry Horse Reservoir is located high in the Rocky Mountains, less than 30 miles from the Continental Divide and is surrounded by more than 25 mountain peaks. The reservoir is about 34 miles long and 23,800 acres and offers excellent opportunities for fishing, boating, water skiing, and swimming. Available fish species are cutthroat trout, bull trout, and whitefish. Facilities have been constructed for camping, picnicking, and boat launching. The surrounding mountains are popular big game hunting areas and several of the small tributaries have their headwaters in nearby alpine lakes. The dam was built as part of the Hungry Horse Project to provide hydroelectric power and flood control. At 564 feet, the dam is the 10th highest in the U.S.

Map of Hungry Horse Reservoir

Latitude, Longitude: 48.269940, -113.846512

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Activities

  • Boating

    There are 10 boat ramps along the reservoir. Abbot Bay, on the eastside, is the longest that will get you on the water when the reservoir is down to 130 feet. Lost Johnny Point is the longest at 73 feet on the west side.

  • Camping

    Fourteen campgrounds as well as dispersed recreation sites surround the reservoir. Information can be obtained by calling the Hungry Horse District office (406) 387-3800.

  • Fishing

    Fishery populations are currently very strong. The South Fork Flathead is one of a handful of watersheds in Montana where bull trout populations are healthy. The reservoir receives very little angling pressure and the many hidden bays can provide you with the solitude that you cannot find on larger water bodies.

  • Hiking

    Explore the scenic area around the reservoir on the area's hiking trails.

  • Historic Sites

    The Visitor Center offers exhibits featuring the construction, history, purpose and benefits of Hungry Horse Dam and a virtual dam tour through video and computer simulation.

    Guided tours of the dam start at the Visitor Center. Tours begin in the middle of June. The tours are available every hour on the hour, seven days a week. Tours will not be given on Holidays; however, the Visitor Center will remain open on these days. During guided tours on the top of the dam, guides point out the unique features of the 564 foot high concrete structure. Tours last approximately 30 minutes and are offered upon request. The Visitor Center and tours are free to the public. Parking is restricted to designated areas, and no parking is permitted on top of the dam.

    Hungry Horse Dam, completed in 1953, is on the south fork of the Flathead River. It is a multipurpose facility that produces hydroelectricity, manages flood control efforts, and is a popular location for recreation.

  • Hunting

    The surrounding mountains are popular big game hunting areas.

  • Picnicking

    The lake shore provides an excellent spot for a picnic. Facilities are available for visitors

  • Water Sports

    The reservoir offers excellent opportunities for fishing, boating, water skiing, and swimming.

Seasonality/Weather

The reservoir is open year round to fishing, however weather pretty much dictates the season to be May through November.

Directions

Driving

The dam is located off Highway 2 in Hungry Horse, Mont. Directional signs lead drivers from the highway to the Visitor Center.

Forest Roads #38 and #895 are your access points. Road #895 takes you along the Westside of the reservoir and passes you over the 564' Hungry Horse Dam. The first 11 miles to the Lid Creek Campground are paved. Road #38 takes you along the eastside of the reservoir and is the primary route if you intend to travel to the upper end of the reservoir near Spotted Bear.

Phone Numbers

Primary

(406) 755-5401

Campground reservations

(406) 387-3800

Links