Lowercase "m" Trail

Length: 700 feet
Duration: 30 seconds to 5 minutes
Difficulty: Elementary
Elevation Gain: 31 inches
Activities: Hiking, trail running
Crowds: Very heavy traffic

As a gentler alternative to the popular "M" Trail, the lowercase "m" is a reasonable outing if you're looking to get outside for a few minutes, but don't want to break a sweat or leave your vehicle beyond eyesight. The trail is relatively easy to follow, but be sure to pre-program the phone number for Gallatin Search & Rescue into your satellite communication device in case things go awry.

From the rounded summit of the "m" you'll be greeted with nice views of the neighboring ranch house and the faintest whiff of high-mountain air. Be sure to bring bear spray, a firearm, and perhaps a chainmail suit or flak jacket in case close contact with a predator ensues. In any case, if you're strapped, rest assured other folks will know that you're not heading all the way up Baldy.

Seasonal Conditions
The "m" is relatively safe under ideal conditions, but mud or snow may render the trail dangerous—even downright impassible. If you're caught out in an unexpected conditions, stay put, don your reflective emergency blanket, try to make a fire for warmth and to signal rescuers of your location, and pray.

From downtown, go north on Rouse Ave., which becomes Bridger Canyon Rd. After a few miles, turn left into the signed parking area, just before a narrow constriction between the Bridgers and the Story Hills. You'll see the "m" from the parking lot—can't miss it.