Billings, Little Big Horn, and the Montana Plains Sights

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Smith River

Smith River Review

Flowing out of the Helena National Forest in the heart of Montana is the 60-mi Smith River. Like most other waterways in the state, it fluctuates with the seasons, ranging from a trickle in September to a raging torrent in June (thanks to the melting mountain snowpack). Although the river is popular for numerous activities, including camping on its banks, fishing, and swimming, the most prevalent activity on the Smith is floating. Floating is so popular, in fact, that Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks limits the number of groups boating down the river to 700 per year. (It also prohibits dogs.) Despite the river's popularity, this is still Montana, and the sense of serene isolation that comes from the sight of towering mountains and open prairie will far outweigh any annoyance at seeing a few other boats during your journey.

    Contact Information

  • Address: Between Iā€“15 and U.S. 85, Great Falls, MT, 59405 | Map It
  • Phone: 406/454ā€“5840
  • Cost: Charges for use permits vary; call for details. Float applications due mid-Feb.
  • Website:
  • Location: Great Falls

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