In 1964 the Bob Marshall Wilderness Area was created when 950,000 acres were set aside; in 1978 the Scapegoat Wilderness was added to the south and the Great Bear Wilderness to the north of the Bob Marshall. The three contiguous areas include 1.5 million acres, falling roughly east of the Swan Valley . The designated wilderness areas are heavily used during the summer and fall. Backpacking and horse packing are the main summer activities, while hunting predominates in the fall, starting in mid-September.
The Chinese Wall is an impressive and popular destination in the “Bob.” To the west the earth’s crust has thrust upward and forced the eastern part to slide underneath it for a distance of about 20 miles. Haystack Mountain provides a good view of the Chinese Wall from the west.
Great Northern Mountain (8,705 feet) is the highest spot in the Great Bear Wilderness. The Middle Fork of the Flathead runs through the Great Bear.