The Best Cross-Country Ski Trails Near Cooke City, Montana

Looking for a great place to cross-country ski? Cooke City and the surrounding areas are exactly what you're looking for. You don't even need an official trail to cross-country ski in Cooke City. Just strap on your skis, and head down snow-covered Main Street. But, if you are looking for designated trails, we got lots of them. Below, we've listed some of our favorites. If you need more information regarding cross-country skiing in our area, feel free to contact us at your convenience.

Bannock Ski Trail

Distance: 2.5 miles

Elevation gain: 132 feet

Bannock Ski Trail is groomed trail open to cross-country skiing and snowmobiling. The trail starts in Silver Gate, Montana and runs into Yellowstone National Park. Along the way, you'll pass through conifer forests, open meadows, and part of the North Absaroka Wilderness. Bannock Ski Trail is considered an easy trail, although the condition of the trail depends on the amount of snow received. In addition, avalanche conditions are always a possibility. Bison and elk regularly use Bannock Ski Trail.

Barronette Ski Trail

Distance: 3.5 miles

Elevation gain: 189 feet

The Barronette Ski Trail features beautiful of conifer forests surrounding Barronette Peak. This is considered an easy trail, with consistently good trail conditions. It runs inside Yellowstone National Park, following Soda Butte Creek (and the Northeast Entrance Road) between the upper Soda Butte bridge and the lower Soda Butte bridge. Be aware that avalanches are a possibility at times. In late winter, you'll also want to keep an eye out for grizzly bears.

Upper Terrace Loop

Distance: 1.5 miles

Elevation gain: Varies with direction

Upper Terrace Loop is just inside Yellowstone National Park's North Entrance. It's a short, easy trail that still manages to offer views of Mammoth Hot Springs and northern Yellowstone's beautiful mountains. You'll also get a look at elk, deer, and bison. Upper Terrance Loop is groomed regularly. It's easier to ski if you do the loop clockwise. You're advised to stay on the designated trail since the ground is unstable in the surrounding hydrothermal areas.

Tower Fall Ski Trail

Distance: 5.0 miles

Elevation gain: 190 feet

The Tower Fall Ski Trail is an easy trail that provides fantastic views of the Yellowstone River and the frozen 132-foot Tower Falls. Occasionally, you might see bison and bighorn sheep. Normally, you have this trail to yourself during winter months. You can access Tower Fall Ski Trail through the North Entrance of Yellowstone National Park. Head for Mammoth Hot Springs. When you get there, just follow the signs to Tower Junction.

Pebble Creek Ski Trail

Distance: 13 miles

Elevation gain: 1357 feet

Pebble Creek Ski Trail is a very difficult backcountry trail that has a number of stream crossings and steep terrain. As such, it is primarily used by skilled backcountry skiers. The rewards are stunning views of the surrounding mountains, bison, and elk. Note that Pebble Creek Ski Trail cannot normally be completed in a single day, although experienced skiers might be able to do so in the late winter or early spring.

Bighorn Loop Ski Trail

Distance: 5.5 miles

Elevation gain: 320 feet

Bighorn Loop Ski Trail is a somewhat easy trail near Mammoth Hot Springs. The trail starts at the Indian Creek Warming Hut. It offers great views of the Gallatin Mountains and the surrounding countryside. You'll also have a good chance of seeing bison and elk along the way. Try to stay on the designated trail since the ground is unstable in the surrounding hydrothermal areas.

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