Montana’s Seeley-Swan Valley consists of two watersheds, the Clearwater River flowing south and the Swan River flowing north off a glacial moraine divide that separates the two. “The Summit” includes 70± acres of timber, meadow and a pond perched atop this divide with an 8,000± square foot masterpiece home sited to showcase some of the most striking views found in the northern Rocky Mountains. The granite walls of the Mission Mountains to the west and the Swan Range to the east rise nearly vertically from the valley, and are topped with snow most of the year. Located between these majesties, The Summit’s gentle topography and easy access make ownership here enchanting yet uncomplicated. Extended family and friends can enjoy a two-bedroom guest house with an additional bunk room for a total sleeping capacity of eight. There is direct access from the property into a large block of U.S. Forest Service lands. All of this geography teems with wildlife including elk, wolves and grizzly bears.
Just the Facts
- 70± acres
- 8,000± square foot home with chef’s kitchen (including a wood-burning pizza oven), 3 bedrooms and a sleeping loft, 5 full baths and 2 half baths
- Guest house that sleeps eight with three full baths
- Extensive patio areas designed by landscape architect
- Seasonal creek
- U.S. Forest Service boundary with two large wilderness areas nearby
- 70 miles from Missoula airport
- “Crown of the Continent” location
The property is accessed from two separate gated driveways along Highway 83, less than 15 minutes north of the town of Seeley Lake. Each driveway enters the forest before arriving at the home site, adding to the privacy of these residences. The east driveway leads to the guest home while the west driveway terminates at the main residence. An ATV trail connects the two homes, allowing owners and their guests to freely move between the main and guest houses. The topography is a gentle slope from north to south, where the heavily forested landscape is broken by small meadows. There is also a permanent pond in front of the main residence that complements the stunning view provided by the wall of mountains to the east. The entire north boundary is shared with U. S. Forest Service, providing direct access to huge blocks of public lands. The property is dotted with numerous seasonal ponds, as one would expect in a valley of glacial origin. These ponds are frequented by the many species of wildlife resident to this part of the Rockies.
The Summit takes log and stone construction to a whole new level. There is nothing cookie cutter about this place and it takes a first-person visit to truly appreciate that fact. The drama of the landscape is in your face at every turn, and there is room for a large family and guests to enjoy.
Learn about the locale
The Summit is located in Missoula County, Montana, near the top of the divide between the Clearwater and the Swan rivers. The property is accessed directly off Highway 83, and is 67
miles northeast of Missoula (population over 68,000). Delta, United, Frontier and Allegiant Air service the Missoula airport with numerous arrivals and departures each day. Missoula is also serviced by Alaska Airlines, providing both in-state service and additional non-stop service to the West Coast. Missoula is home to world-renowned health care, a vibrant art community, excellent restaurants, and a lively and historic downtown. It is also known for weekend Farmers Markets and an historic theater/music venue. Missoula is also home to the University of Montana. The property is also about 75 miles from Kalispell (population over 20,000), where there is a full array of services including excellent medical facilities, world-class Whitefish Mountain Ski Resort in nearby Whitefish, as well as Glacier International Airport. This airport is serviced by Alaska Airlines, Allegiant, Delta and United.
The Seeley-Swan Valley is one of Montana’s unique jewels. Nestled between two massive mountain ranges, the Swan Range and the Mission Range, this valley is a patchwork of dense timber, lush meadows and hundreds of lakes — a landscape that is unique to this part of Montana. It consists of two watersheds, the Clearwater River flowing south and the Swan River flowing north from a small divide. Part of the significant Crown of the Continent Ecosystem, the valley sits at the western edge of the Bob Marshall Wilderness complex and the eastern edge of the Mission Mountains Tribal Wilderness Area, giving backcountry enthusiasts access to millions of acres of designated wilderness. The vast majority of land here is owned by the U.S. Forest Service, the State of Montana or he Nature Conservancy, with sparse residential ownership and minimal commercial use.
The town of Seeley Lake, population 2,500, is located 15 miles south of the property. It is a friendly and vibrant town with deep roots in the timber industry. In recent years the community has worked with state and national groups to help preserve and improve the recreational opportunities and outdoor culture in the area.
Sixty-seven miles away is Missoula, home to the University of Montana with an undergraduate student body of over 10,000 students. Missoula’s rich assortment of restaurants, museums, galleries, festivals and live theater earn it the reputation of the cultural center of Montana. It also has some of the best medical facilities in the region, including the International Heart Institute. Snowbowl Ski area, located about 15 minutes north of Missoula, offers great skiing without overbearing crowds and is about to undergo a significant expansion, doubling it’s size. Kayaking and river surfing are also possible from Missoula’s world famous “Brennan’s Wave” located directly downtown on the Clark Fork River.
Bigfork, a charming lakeside village on the north shore of Flathead Lake, is just 58 scenic miles from The Summit. Bigfork offers a choice of unique shops and restaurants, a 27-hole golf course, a summer arts festival and live theater.
At an elevation of 4,200 feet, this area has mild summer temperatures that only occasionally reach into the 90s. The Seeley-Swan valley typically has 158 sunny days per year, and the average high temperatures in July and August are just over 80 degrees, with lows dipping into the 40s. Spring is variable with rains providing needed moisture for the native range. As the western larch, quaking aspens and cottonwoods turn red and gold in the fall, nighttime temperatures drop into the 20s and 30s. This may be the most beautiful time of year, with clear days in September and October warming to the 50s and 60s. January is the coldest month, with an average low of 10 degrees. Temperatures occasionally fall below zero in winter, and packed snow depths average 36-60 inches. Average annual snowfall is approximately 180-340 inches, making for a true winter wonderland.
Learn more about the property
Acreage (Deeded & Leased)
Deeded Acres: 70±
Total Acres: 70±
The owners will be making certain items of personal property available for purchase by buyer outside of the purchase and sale agreement for the real property. This personal property inventory will include a number of furnishings, art and other items.
There is a Conservation Easement covering the property which is held by The Nature Conservancy. This easement’s stated purpose is to protect the diverse forest and wetland vegetation communities, and the wildlife inhabiting these areas, and contribute to the ecological integrity of the Crown of the Continent and the Clearwater River Watershed. It allows for new non-residential construction within certain limits, and prohibits commercial use of the property, subdivision, and other activities that would compromise its integrity.
This magnificent, 8,000± square foot home is constructed with high quality, polished logs and fine stonework. It was originally built in 1994, with a major remodel in 2002 that added unique features and meticulous detail. There are three bedrooms and a loft with custom-made bunk beds, along with five full baths and two half baths. The chef’s kitchen features a large, granite-topped island, wood-burning oven, professional appliances and custom cabinetry. The open interior design is graced with exposed log beams. Hand-planed hardwood or stone floors are throughout. This Summit also offers these features:
- A central fireplace with artistic stonework and single-stone lintel
- An oversized exercise/multipurpose room
- A loft office
- Significant storage capacity on the finished second floor
- A large outdoor rock patio with firepit
- Massive stone entryways
- An airy, screened porch with stone floor and built-in gas grill
- A wood-paneled foyer with lighted coffered ceiling
- An outdoor, covered hot tub mounted in a stone base
- A 2,000± sq. ft. covered patio with stone floor and large outdoor fireplace
- A sauna
- Garage on lower level
- A detached two-car garage/shop with oversized finished second-floor storage space
The main house is landscaped with boulders and extensive rockwork. Nearby is a permanent pond, and there are also several seasonal ponds on the property.
This two-story plus loft residence has the look and feel of a traditional log home, with thoroughly modern qualities. With a full basement, it has two bedrooms, a bunk room that sleeps four, and three full baths. High ceilings with exposed beams and polished wood floors add to the comfort and beauty. This home is surrounded by wide decks with pole railings, and has a separate two-car garage and also a snowmobile shed.
Taxes are approximately $14,900 based upon previous years.
Learn about the recreational amenities
Whether you’re looking for challenging adventure or a quiet nature walk, you’ll find it in every direction from The Summit — and much of it right out your back door. The Seeley-Swan valley has more streams, lakes and ponds than other regions in Montana, and excellent fishing opportunities are just minutes away. Canoeists, kayakers and others can float the Swan or the Clearwater rivers, including the unique Clearwater Canoe Trail, three-and-one-half miles of meandering stream that empties into Seeley Lake.The area has hundreds of miles of trails for hiking, mountain biking and horseback riding. There are multiple easy access points to enter the Bob Marshall and Mission Mountain Wilderness areas.In the winter, snowmobilers will find 350 miles of groomed trails. Nearby, the Seeley Creek Nordic Ski Trail System has 18 miles of groomed cross-country ski trails. For competitors, look to the Seeley Lake Challenge Biathlon, and the Over Seeley’s Creeks and Ridges (OSCR) cross-country ski race. Montana’s “Race to the Sky,” a grueling 350-mile sled dog race is also held in the valley. Excellent snowshoeing is right outside your door. Downhill skiers can find uncrowded runs at Snowbowl Ski Area near Missoula, about one-and-one-half hours away. For a more varied terrain, head to world-class Whitefish Mountain Resort north of Kalispell, about two hours away. In the summer, Whitefish Mountain offers biking trails and competitions, zip-line tours and more.Wildlife in the Seeley-Swan valley includes big-game species such as elk, white-tail deer and mule deer, along with moose, bighorn sheep, black bear and mountain goats. This diverse habitat also supports lynx, mountain lion, gray wolves, grizzly bear and many smaller animals. Over 160 migratory and other bird species occur here, including many ducks, Canada geese, bald eagles, osprey and peregrine falcons. This watershed is one of the only places in the western U.S. that supports breeding pairs of common loons.Golfers can drive 58 miles to Big Fork, home to the 27-hole, semi-private Eagle Bend Golf Club, or drive about 15 miles to the 18-hole course at Double Arrow Resort, just south of Seeley Lake. The Double Arrow also offers excellent dining with a world-class wine list.Nearby Holland Lake Lodge (15 minutes to the north) is an historic lodge in a beautiful lakeside setting. It offers many lake activities, beautiful hikes to Holland Falls, lodging and gourmet dining.