The western shores of Flathead Lake offer 40 miles of gentle beaches, state parks, hiking and horseback trails. The largest park at Big Arm is 217 acres and a popular launching spot for day trips to Wild Horse Island. Prairie-like on the south side and heavily timbered on the north, this renowned primitive park is home to bighorn sheep, wild horses, mule deer, bald eagles and a multitude of other wildlife species. Along the way, travelers and residents are awed by the stunning views across Flathead Lake with the backdrop of the Swan Mountains and mighty Missions beyond.
The widest part of Flathead Lake is known as the Big Draw, a 15 mile stretch from shore to shore. A sparkling playground for all types of watercraft, Big Arm Bay is ideal for scuba diving. Swimmers, boaters and anglers tell a famous legend of the huge land-locked sturgeon, lovingly named the “Flathead Monster,” and seen by locals and visitors for almost two centuries.
Heading north along Flathead’s tree-lined shores are charming communities that grew from the hard work of the common folks who settled here. In 1920, Lakeside was an important steamer stop for passengers and freight. From a hotel built by John Stoner, the town’s name was changed from “Stoner” to “Chautauqua” then “Lacon” and finally to Lakeside.
Just a few miles north is Somers owing its early life to the Great Northern Railway. This hilltop hamlet was once the center of yearly production for over 600,000 railroad ties. Since those early Flathead times, Somers and Lakeside have matured into vibrant communities offering 365 days of luxurious living and endless recreation and a premier destination for creating a Montana retreat and a lifetime of memories.