The trail to Mount Sentinel begins on the University of Montana's campus. You will begin winding your way up the switchbacks below the M, a giant white letter situated on the side of Mount Sentinel. There are benches along the way in case you or someone in your group needs to rest. Once you reach the M, continue on the trail for a few more switchbacks until you reach a fire road. From the fire road the trail goes straight up for the next mile. The summit is denoted by a rocky outcrop with 360-degree views.
The view from the peak offers astounding views of the Rattlesnake Mountains, Mount Jumbo, University Mountain, East Missoula, the Missoula Valley, and the Bitterroot Mountains. Along the trail, keep an eye out for deer because they frequent the area. There are bountiful wildflowers in the spring as well. Bring plenty of water; the hike offers zero chance for shade. If you bring your dog, be aware of the temperature and the hazards of exposure in the summer heat.