EXPLORE: Swift Creek Trailhead to Smith Lake

By Beacon Staff

Nestled in a shallow valley above Whitefish Lake is the serene Smith Lake, an 18-acre lake on state trust land and accessed by The Whitefish Trail.

The 2.5-mile hike from the Swift Creek Trailhead to the lake is relatively easy.

The trail is immaculately maintained with berms for mountain bikers.

The trailhead’s proximity to Whitefish and easy access makes it ideal for a quick getaway run, hike or ride.

For an even shorter hike, try the 1.3-mile Swift Creek Loop. The western portion of the loop, which takes visitors to an overlook view of Swift Creek, is wheelchair accessible.

The trailhead is outfitted with an informational kiosk, restrooms and plenty of parking.

Dogs are welcome, but leashes are required.

Also, it is bear country so it never hurts to pack some bear spray along with your fishing pole and license.


From downtown Whitefish, drive north on Baker Avenue and follow the road around Whitefish Lake.

Baker turns into Wisconsin over the viaduct and then to Delray Road at the north end of the lake.

The trailhead and parking lot is on the right.

If you come to a one-lane bridge, you’ve gone too far.

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