The Greenough Park Trail is truly one of urban Missoula's best, making for a peaceful refuge from the city hubbub and near the downtown area. The trail makes a loop through this lush 42-acre park, not only popular for people but for bears, which often frequent the park during fall in search of food before going into hibernation.
Even more appealing is pristine Rattlesnake Creek, which courses through the park's center. Cottonwoods and conifers are thick throughout, as are willows and other woody and herbaceous plants. It's a great place for bird-watching, too, and signs along the trail describe some of the species you might seemore than 100 species make their home here.
The park was donated to the city by the Greenough family, one of the area's well-to-do in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Their Victorian mansion used to sit at the south end of what is now the park but was moved in the 1970s to make way for Interstate 90. The house was moved across town into the South Hills, where it served as a restaurant for many years. Sadly it burned to the ground in the 1990s in a mysterious electrical fire in the middle of the night. Some attributed the fire to a Greenough daughter who allegedly had haunted the house for many years. Another restaurant was built in its place (see Mansion Heights Trail
Greenough Park has plenty of benches, a large picnic shelter for rent with a small playground nearby, and porta potties at both parking areas. Several dirt paths wind through the trees and along Rattlesnake Creek (for pedestrians only). You can make a loop by taking Monroe Street. Between Jackson and Locust streets there isn't much traffic.
Park at the lot along Monroe Street just north of Locust Street (1001 Monroe) or farther up Monroe at the picnic shelter.
If you need a break from city life (though Missoula isn't that hectic), this is the place. Quiet, green (in summer), and beautiful, this trail makes for a great stroll or easy bike ride. There are a couple of inclines as you head north on the main trail, ...