June 26, 2021 Big Fork and Swan Lake

After breakfast we headed into the town of Bigfork where we spent about four hours exploring the heart of town. The main street is filled with charming shops, coffee shops, art galleries, restaurants and small inns. Everyone headed off in different directions popping in and out of the shops exploring town. Kent, Carlos and I had a coffee along the river and lunch at a local café before heading back to the house.

The town of Bigfork, Montana is located at the northern end of Flathead Lake and has a population of about 4,500 inhabitants. The name of the town comes from the fact that the Flathead River and Swan River flow into Flathead Lake here, creating a big fork.

Bigfork was founded by Everit L. Sliter who fell in love with the area immediately when he arrived for a hunting and fishing trip in 1889. Sliter relocated his family from Michigan and purchased 140 acres where he planted one of the largest orchards in the valley. He would build the first hotel rooms in the area as well as a post office. His vision laid the groundwork for the future development of the town. Today you can still visit some of the historic places from the past like Eva Gates Preserves founded in 1949, the Bigfork Inn (first opened as a hotel in 1910) and the 1911 steel bridge over the Swan River.

In the afternoon we took a boat ride on Swan Lake where the home that we are staying at is located. Swan Lake is located in the Flathead National Forest and borders the Bob Marshall Wilderness Area. The lake is about ten miles in length and a mile wide. There are many beautiful homes along the lake’s perimeter nestled amongst the lush green pine trees.

In the evening we ordered some pizzas from town and brought them back to the house for dinner. After dinner we played a game called Catch Phrase and had a good time with that.

Town of Bigfork
Mainstream of Bigfork
Bigfork, Montana
Swan Lake Homes
Swan Lake Boat Ride