Clark’s Bay Day Use Area is situated on the picturesque “Devil’s Elbow” and Clark’s Bay of Hauser Lake. Just a short drive from Helena, this area offers stunning views of the Big Belt and Elkhorn Mountains. The area is overflowing with outdoor adventure opportunities. Whether you’re into fishing, hunting, wildlife viewing, hiking, mountain biking, boating or all of the above; all of these things are immediately accessed from (the greater) Hauser Lake Recreation Area. There is surely an activity for everyone! While just a short drive from Helena, the state capital; the feeling of seclusion and abundant nature is sure to impress.
Clark’s Bay offers excellent recreational access. Clark’s Bay offers a large, approximately quarter-mile long manicured beach with a volleyball court, pavilions with picnic tables, power and lights. There are vault toilets located in convenient locations throughout the areas. There is a network of non-motorized, dirt, gravel and paved trails throughout Devil’s Elbow, Two Camps Vista and Clark’s Bay that allow you to walk or bike around the area without contending with vehicles. There are multiple trails within the larger Hauser Lake Recreation area, as well as multiple fishing access sites, hunting access, wildlife viewing and of course boating. World class mountain biking trails abound in the area as well. The recreation opportunities in the area are boundless.
Clark’s Bay offers several amenities that will make your day enjoyable and comfortable. At Clark’s Bay there are two sets of vault toilets located near the beach and parking areas. There is potable water provided throughout the day use area, as well as garbage dumpsters. There are also picnic tables and small pavilions throughout the areas and benches along the lake and trails to take in the views. There is a small marina, general store with gas and a bar/restaurant just a half mile away.
The day use area is situated in a shrub-steppe landscape, mostly comprised of sage brush and bunch grasses. The entire day use area has a view of the lake and mountains. While there are some ponderosa pine and deciduous trees throughout the area, they are scarce and do not provide a large amount of shade, but the lake does help keep the temperatures down a bit on those hot summer days.
Clark’s Bay is located in a prime location to get out and recreate outdoors, or within the capital of Montana. There are hundreds of miles of trails, Bureau of Land Management and Forest Service lands, state parks, the Lewis and Clark Trail and so much more.
Helena (only a short drive away) has all the amenities of a large city with small town charm. There are great restaurants, museums, the capitol building, old mining settlements, Last Chance Gulch, Reeder’s Alley and a vibrant downtown with a walking mall area.
Charges & Cancellations
Reservation cancellations must be done through recreation.gov.Clark’s Bay Day Use Area is located at 5700 York Road, Helena, Montana 59601. From Interstate 90 driving from Bozeman, exit at Exit: 274 US 287 Helena/Ennis, Right turn to continue North on 287 and continue for 57 miles. Turn right onto Lake Helena Drive, then turn right in 450 feet to stay on Lake Helena Drive. Continue for 4 miles through the roundabout. Turn right onto York Road and drive 5.7 miles to Clark’s Bay Day Use Area. From Helena/Butte/Great Falls: Drive to (or exit from I-15 onto) Custer Avenue, Head East on Custer Ave. Take left turn onto York Road. Continue on for 15 miles to Clark’s Bay Day Use Area.406-227-3570N