Lolo Hot Springs and Rollins, MT

Lolo Hot Springs is a tiny little nowhere about 20 minutes outside of Lolo, MT. They have created a small resort area along the Lolo Creek with a restaurant/bar, the hot springs and pool area, a lodge for those allergic to camping, horse riding trails, and the RV/tent area across the road. The RV sites leave a lot to be desired, rutted grass/mud and not delineated at all, with W/E only (30A) and a dilapidated dump station on site. Prairie dogs are everywhere! But it is a very scenic canyon area with a great possibility for critter sightings. We passed a herd of Elk on our way out from Lolo.

We took the opportunity to soak in the hot springs. They built a concrete pool around the natural springs and enclosed it in a wood frame structure. The water was definitely hot and relaxing on those tense neck muscles…

The only place to ride bicycles here was along Hwy. 93. We quickly ruled that out based on the way the locals drive out here – you would think they are racing at the Daytona 500!  So we settled on a road trip into Lolo & Missoula for some urban exploring. In Lolo we found the Lolo Peak Brewing Co. for a little brew tasting. We were underwhelmed there, but made up for it at our next find. The Lolo Creek Distillery is a new venture and right now they are producing gin and vodka in various flavors. Their honey-huckleberry vodka was very tasty, I could use it as a “sippin’ vodka”. While there, I just had to try the “Rip ’N’ Lips”, a Lolo Creek Distillery relative to a Moscow Mule. Tasty, not too much jalapeno…

Another road trip day for us took us farther west along the Lolo Creek and the Lochsa River to the Lolo Pass Visitor Center. As usual, scenery was not lacking, and we got fleeting glimpses of a moose and a black bear…so fleeting we had no time to snap a photo. They did a nice job on this visitor center, there are some displays, a short nature trail, souvenir shop, and overall rest stop. The ground squirrels were colorful and plentiful. On our way back we stopped at the DeVoto Memorial Cedar Grove and took the short walk through the cedars and along the river.

Moving day we headed back north on Hwy. 93 to the megalopolis of Rollins, MT, which is right on Flathead Lake. Rollins Restaurant & RV Park was home for a week. It was a very nice facility, not real big (43 RV sites, 7 tent sites), with the restaurant and a meat shop on site. The meat shop offered, among other things, various meats (beef, buffalo, elk mostly), varieties of jerky, and varieties of cheese curds. 

Not a lot of bicycle paths around here, but Jeanne did manage to find a section of The Great Northern Historical Trail, part of Rails To Trails of Northern Montana, that runs from Somers to Kila (22 miles one way). We got a clear day and got ready to load up for a bike ride, but I got tangled up with a bicycle pump and my low air front tire & wouldn’t you know it, brute strength and awkwardness led me to rip the stem from the tube. Minor change in plans, time for a road trip to the nearest bicycle shop which happened to be all the way into downtown Kalispell, Wheaton’s Cycle. If you ever happen to be in the area and in need of anything bicycle related, the folks at Wheaton’s are outstanding as far as customer service. They got us right in for an inner tube change and “bada-bing, bada-boom”, problem resolved. We hooked up with one of the Kalispell trailheads for the Great Northern Historical Trail and proceeded out along Hwy. 2 to the big city of Kila, about 11 miles one way. The trail was OK, paved at least, but I was kinda hoping for a little more wilderness and a lot less civilization. They do a nice job on their bicycle trails here, there were plenty of benches for rest stops, a picnic area, a port-o-potty and a pit toilet along the way. If we were expecting some wildlife sightings, we got disappointed in a big way. But hey, the blood got pumping and the air was fresh.

On our last day at Rollins, it just happened to be the best weather day for our whole stay, temps in the 70’s and low wind. KAYAK TIME!!! I say “low wind” before we ever set oar on the water at Flathead Lake. But once we got our Sea Eagle inflatable kayak under way, we quickly found out the “swirly” nature of the winds over the lake. After spinning a few donuts (not by choice), we figured out the rhythm and spent the next couple of hours cruising the shoreline between Rollins and Lakeside. It was a nice counter to the leg workout we got on the bikes the day before.

So tomorrow we suck up the jacks and we’re off to Kalispell. Until next post…

(Tech notes, part dieux…I have no idea how I did it but it looks like I replaced my missing photos from some of those earlier blog posts 2014-2015-ish. I still need to continue through to ensure no further pix are missing. Granted, my sharp-as-a-marble memory may have replaced some of the original pix with different ones, I just hope I did not post photos from Nevada that were actually from Wyoming!)

About rvrrat520

Recreational wanderers just livin' the dream while we can still get vertical.
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1 Response to Lolo Hot Springs and Rollins, MT

  1. Mom says:

    WOW! What amazing picture.

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