Fosseum Mountain is another summit in the Cabinet Mountains
that will attract your attention as you drive west on Hwy 2 between Kalispell and Libby, Montana. Definitely not a high peak, still a worthy endeavor, as the views from the ridge of the higher peaks of the Cabinet Mountain Wilderness to the northwest are spectacular. Also a good conditioning climb while waiting for snowmelt on those peaks and other higher peaks in the various ranges of Northwest Montana.
[img:716390:alignleft:small:Turn onto #6761 and cross this bridge][img:716381:alignright:small:TH parking] Travel approximately 59 miles west of Kalispell on Hwy 2. Turn left on #6761 when you see this bridge just off the highway. Drive approximately .92 miles on #6761. Just past the un-marked logging road gate on the left there is a pull-out on the right and room for one vehicle to park.
[img:716387:alignleft:small:Logging road gate][img:716379:alignright:small:View of the logging road] The un-marked logging road with the gate is the beginning of the hike. Hike around the west flank of the mountain on the logging road for approximately 1.31 miles while gaining approximately 175'...a leisurely stroll, if you will, giving you periodic glimpses of the parked-out ridge.
[img:716361:alignleft:small:Leave the logging road here][img:716362:alignright:small:Terrain going up the ridge]
Leave the logging road at this point where the NW ridge comes all the way down to the road...thus avoiding a nasty bushwhack. If you try to leave the road sooner than this you will be met by dense vegetation on the lower western flank of the mountain. The NW ridge is absolutely beautiful and affords great views of Kenelty Mountain to the north and the higher you go the better the views become.
[img:716384:alignleft:small:The false summit][img:716365:alignright:small:Hiking along the ridge-top to the summit]
Continue up the ridge...eventually encountering a large false summit. After you have reached this point you have already gained most of the elevation. Continue along the beautiful open ridge-top to the actual summit which is bordered on the east by stands of trees. Views to the west and south-west are more open, but the best views occur fairly early upon reaching the ridge-top. There are several small ups and downs along the ridge on the way to the actual summit.
|Terrain||One-Way Mileage||Elevation Gain|
Camping and RedTape
Fosseum 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.
We carried our own water, but Houghton Creek runs right by the parking pull-out. A Kootenai National Forest map is helpful in locating the mountain.
The closest camping is at Lake Creek Campground
located a few miles further west off of Hwy 2.
Logan State Park
is located at Middle Thompson Lake in the Thompson Chain of Lakes a few miles back east on Hwy 2.