The Beaverhead-Deerlodge National Forest's 3.35 million acres make it the largest national forest in Montana, covering parts of eight southwest Montana counties. Administrative offices representing seven ranger districts are located in Butte, Dillon, Philipsburg, Deer Lodge, Whitehall, Ennis, Sheridan, Wise River, and Wisdom.

The combined forests, individually proclaimed by President Theodore Roosevelt in 1908, now encompass a dozen+ mountain ranges, the Anaconda-Pintler and Lee Metcalf Wilderness Areas, Georgetown Lake, the Discovery and Maverick Mountain ski areas, and the ghost towns of Elkhorn, Granite and Coolidge. Both the Continental Divide National Scenic Trail and the Nez Perce Historic Trail traverse the Beaverhead-Deerlodge National Forest. Two driving tours—Lemhi Pass and the Pioneer Mountains Scenic Byway—provide scenic auto access.

The Beaverhead-Deerlodge Forest provides habitat for 246 birds, 85 mammals—including grizzly bears and wolves—and 15 reptiles and amphibians. Fifty campgrounds, 25 cabins, and hundreds of miles of hiking, horse, bicycle, snowmobile and cross-country ski trails for human access.

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