While much of Southwest Montana is rich in mining history, the area around Deer Lodge was settled by ranchers. They found the valleys in the area prime for raising cattle which could be marketed to mining towns throughout the region and settlers traveling the Oregon Trail. Today, Deer Lodge boasts an unusual mix of historic attractions including six museums, one which features the Old Montana Prison. The town is also home to the Grant-Kohrs Ranch, the only U.S. National Historic Site that is also a working cattle ranch. It’s operated by the National Park Service.
Operated by the National Park Service as an 1800s working ranch, this is a well-preserved slice of western history, once home to a Montana cattle baron. Original home furnishings and horse-drawn equipment. Open year-round. 406-846-2070 Click for details
Old Montana Prison
Guided and self-guided tours behind the gray stone walls and towers, through a massive cell block, hanging gallows and guard turrets. In use until 1979. 406-846-3111 Click for details
Montana Auto Museum
Interpretive exhibits and over 120 antique cars offer a trip down memory lane. Vintage camping vehicles including a very rare motor home built by Pierce Arrow in 1928. 406-846-3111 Click for details
Frontier Montana Museum
The best display of cowboy collectibles between Cody and Calgary. Guns, spurs, chaps, lassos and all the rest. Includes Desert John’s Saloon, a whiskey memorablia collection. 406-846-3111 Click for details
Powell County Museum
An extensive gun collection and an old mining exhibit are featured in this local history museum. 406-846-3111 Click for details
Represents the early years of Deer Lodge. Visit the Snowshoe Creek School, the Blood Homestead Cabin, the Post Office, the barber shop and Spanish Fork blacksmith shop where the hammer rings on the anvil daily.
The "Little Joe"
An all-electric engine operated by the Milwaukee Railroad was one of 20 engines originally built in 1948 for Joseph Stalin. 406-846-3111
Intriguing collection of dolls and toys from days gone by. 406-846-3111 Click for details
"A Good Road from Plymouth Rock to Puget Sound."The first transcontinental route in the upper tier states came through Deer Lodge in 1913. Visit the Montana Auto Mueseum in the Old Montana Territorial Prison located on this historical route.
Garnet Ghost Town
Ghost town west of Drummond being restored to its original mining camp condition. A visitor center helps one understand gold rush days. Ask for directions in Drummond. 406-542-5500 Click for details
New Chicago School
Built in 1874, the school was moved to Drummond and renovated by the Lower Valley Historical Society. It houses local history, pictures of the area and is set up as close as possible to its original schoolhouse decor.
Learn the art of prospecting as you pan for gold, sapphires and garnets. Great fun for the whole family. 406-846-7777
Montana State Prison Hobby Shop
Nationally known since 1880 for "horsehair" products including belts, bridles, head stalls, hat bands, earrings and an assortment of handcrafted products. Open seven days a week. 406-846-1320, ext. 2310.
Browns Lake and Blackfoot Waterfowl Area
Fishing, windsurfing and birdwatching. See eagles, loons, herons and pelicans among many other waterfowl. Follow fishing access signs on Highway 200 east of Ovando. Click for details
Flint Creek, Rock Creek, Little Blackfoot River, Boulder Creek, Willow Creek Reservoir, Clark Fork River and Georgetown Lake all represent fine trout fishing. Easy access from Drummond.
Warm Springs Ponds
An ARCO reclamation site, this area now boasts excellent bird viewing. Includes picnic area, wildlife viewing and walking trails. Exit 171 off I-90 south of Deer Lodge.
Lost Creek State Park
Near the Warm Springs Ponds. 25 campsites on 44 acres. Click for details
Arrow Stone Park
relaxing refuge for visitors that want to picnic, fish the Clark Fork, walk the trails or just sit on a bench to view the variety of wildlife surrounding them.
Other Deer Lodge Area Communities
Authentic western community just off I-90, filled with hard-working, friendly people, marks the beginning of the Pintler Scenic Route. Ranching remains the town’s focus, home of the World Famous Bullshippers. View Drummond information and listings
Mountain meadows ablaze with wildflowers and the mountain peaks of the Bob Marshall Wilderness greet the visitors to Ovando. A number of guides and outfitters in the area will take you into the wildlands or several guest ranches offer accommodations. View Ovando information and listings
quiet valley nestled between the Bob Marshall/Scapegoat Wildernesses and the Garnet Range provides a picturesque setting for watchable wildlife, fishing, hunting, snowmobiling and cross country skiing. View Helmville information and listings