2011 Southwestern USA travel blog

Deer Lodge, MT - Indian Creek Campground, Site 55

Deer Lodge, MT - Indian Creek Campground, Site 55, another view

Deer Lodge, MT - Indian Creek Campground, Site 55 - view from...

St. Regis to Deer Lodge, MT 0 - our route - 151...

St. Regis to Deer Lodge, MT 1 - the clouds are still...

St. Regis to Deer Lodge, MT 2

St. Regis to Deer Lodge, MT 3 - one bare mountain right...

St. Regis to Deer Lodge, MT 4 - the Clark Fork River...

St. Regis to Deer Lodge, MT 5 - and we crossed it...

St. Regis to Deer Lodge, MT 6 - lots of construction on...

St. Regis to Deer Lodge, MT 7

St. Regis to Deer Lodge, MT 8 - the towns put their...

St. Regis to Deer Lodge, MT 9

St. Regis to Deer Lodge, MT 10 - the train tunnel next...

St. Regis to Deer Lodge, MT 11

St. Regis to Deer Lodge, MT 12

St. Regis to Deer Lodge, MT 13 - D on the mountainside...

St. Regis to Deer Lodge, MT 14 - Downtown Deer Lodge

St. Regis to Deer Lodge, MT 15

St. Regis to Deer Lodge, MT 16

Grant-Kohrs Ranch 1 - the 9,000 square foot ranch house

Grant-Kohrs Ranch 2 - the chuck wagon

Grant-Kohrs Ranch 3 - Bringing the herd in so the calves can...

Grant-Kohrs Ranch 4 - the actual act of separating them - it...

Grant-Kohrs Ranch 5 - the branding irons in the fire

Grant-Kohrs Ranch 6 - the moms are definitely not very happy with...

Grant-Kohrs Ranch 7 - the calves waiting their turn

Grant-Kohrs Ranch 8 - the calf, roped by its hind legs, is...

Grant-Kohrs Ranch 9 - an apparatus is placed over its head so...

Grant-Kohrs Ranch 10 - the brand is applied

Grant-Kohrs Ranch 11 - the final result - the Grant-Kohrs brand

Grant-Kohrs Ranch 12

Grant-Kohrs Ranch 13 - one of the quilts showing many different brands

Grant-Kohrs Ranch 14 another pretty quilt

Montana State Prison 1 - one of the corner watch towers -...

Montana State Prison 2 - the visiting room

Montana State Prison 3 - another part of the wall and another...

Montana State Prison 4 - the corner of the cell block where...

Montana State Prison 5

Montana State Prison 6 - the cell block

Montana State Prison 7 - typical cell

Montana State Prison 8 - the chapel

Montana State Prison 9 - the showers

Montana State Prison 10 - the dining hall

Montana State Prison 11 - very ingenious seating - a board and...

Montana State Prison 12 - the yard with the red brick cell...

Movie Clips - Playback Requirements - Problems?

(MP4 - 2.83 MB)

Mamas unhappy about being separated from their calves.


The 151 mile trip from St. Regis to Deer Lodge, MT was all interstate but about 40 miles of it was one lane on our side due to construction zones. I don't think I have ever seen such long construction zones as out here. It is not unusual to have construction last for 20 consecutive miles. It hasn't been a problem yet so I guess they know what they are doing. With such a short time frame to do the construction, I guess they have to do it that way. It was a pretty drive down the valley with mountains all around us as we followed the Clark Fork River the whole way.

We are staying at the Indian Creek Campground and have a large, full hookup, pull-through with 50 amps and good WiFi. Verizon coverage is also good. The Campground has been full every night so there has been a lot of traffic as most only stay one or two nights at most.

Saturday we went to the Grant-Kohrs Ranch Historic Site which is a full working ranch and they allow you to go all over it pretty much as you want. This weekend was the annual Ranch Days which also included a reunion of the descendants of the original owners of the ranch. We got to see the calf branding which is done every year to brand all the new calves born in the Spring. It was interesting to watch them herd all of the cows into one corral, then one at a time, drive the mamas back out into the pasture, leaving just the calves. They then herded the calves into a smaller corral where they waited their turn to be branded. You have never heard such a racket as those moms made after they were separated. Watch the short movie and maybe you can tell how upset they were.

We then went to the old Montana State Prison which is now a museum. It was originally built in 1871, primarily with prison labor, by the federal government as a territorial prison and then transferred to Montana once it became a state in 1889. The prison was shut down in 1979 and everyone moved to the new State Prison about four miles from here. The self-guided tour was very well done and we were able to roam the grounds as we liked and spend as much time as we wanted.

Tomorrow, Monday, we head for West Yellowstone, MT just outside the West entrance to Yellowstone National Park.

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