The Swan Valley

The little community of Condon is in the Upper Swan Valley 70 miles south of Glacier National Park. In 2008, American Wildlands ranked the Swan Valley the highest in terms of habitat quality, value, and importance as a linkage zone in the Crown of the Continent. The Swan Valley Growth Policy Committee describes the valley as one of the most wild and natural human inhabited ecosystems in the lower 48 states and one of the most aesthetically beautiful, glaciated mountain regions of Northwest Montana.

This world-class wild landscape supports a dispersed community of friendly and independent souls dedicated to protecting its rural culture, the natural integrity of the valley, its wildlife and grandeur. The vast majority of the land in the valley is public, managed by the USFS. The intricate and complex landscape offers views of high mountain peaks, glaciated hanging valleys, waterfalls, inspiring pinnacles, saw-toothed cliffs, and ever-changing patterns of light.

The Swan Range four miles to the east is often called the Alps of Montana and forms the boundary of 4.5 million acres of protected lands found in the Bob Marshall Wilderness Complex, the Rocky Mountain Front and Glacier Park. The Mission Mountain Range four miles to the west is equally spectacular and forms the Mission Mountain Wilderness Complex, which includes the only designated tribal wilderness lands in the United States.

The Swan Valley supports more species with more diversity and more charismatic mega-fauna than most national parks and Wilderness Areas outside of Alaska. There are more grizzly bears than students in the local elementary school. Endangered Grizzly Bears, Lynx and Bull trout are all found in the Swan Valley. The US Census designates Condon in the Upper Swan Valley as a “Frontier Community,” because it is so small, wild, and rural.

Holland Lake is the beating heart of the Swan Valley, gateway to the Bob Marshall and the Swan Mountain Face. The Lake is small at 413 acres, less than a half mile wide and 1.75 miles long. It is picturesque with a large waterfall visible in the Swan Face above the eastern shore of the lake.

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