OverviewLydia Mountain 6703' is located on the extreme northeastern end of a long boomerang-shaped ridge in NW Montana's Salish Mountains. Also located on the same ridge, are Sutton Mountain, at 6872', the second highest summit in the Salish, Little Sutton Mountain, and last, but certainly not least, McGuire Mountain, at 6991', the highest summit in the Salish Mountains. McGuire also sports a lookout that can be rented.
In the year 2000, the Lydia Mountain fire burned approximately 5200 acres including the summit area of the mountain.
Route InformationThis route follows Trail #800 for 99% of the way. The trail passes just to the west of the summit of Lydia but walking to the summit only amounts to a few feet off of the trail.
There is some gain and loss along the trail to Lydia. From the Trailhead to the highest point of the trail along the flank of Sutton Mountain there is a gain a of about 285'. From that high point to the lowest point of the ridge between Sutton and Lydia there is a loss of about 330'. From that low point on the ridge to the summit of Lydia there is a gain of about 373'.
About the only signs of life we encountered along the hot, dry trail were some grouse...pictured below.
The summit area, pictured below, was surrounded by dead trees, blooming beargrass and wildflowers...seen in Parting Shots.
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Camping and RedTapeLydia Mountain is located in the Kootenai National Forest, which is bear country. Don't hike alone, make noise as you hike, and carry bear spray and know how to use it. Although we saw no bear sign specifically on Lydia Mountain, the Salish Mountains are chock-full of healthy-sized black bears and the occasional grizzly.
A map of the Kootenai National Forest is helpful. Bug repellent is an absolute necessity in Montana in June, July and August. There is no water available on this hike.
The closest official campground is at McGuire Mountain Lookout.