I left on this trip with no clear itinerary. I had identified more things to do and see than I had time for. I would watch the weather and make decisions as I went. My only rule was that I would stay south of I-90. That rule would keep me somewhat focused and stop me from chasing shiny objects when the world’s wonders were close; they just might take a bit of effort to uncover. I left Georgetown Lake and moseyed on to the Maiden Rock (west side) fishing access spot and set up camp.

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Leaving whimsy at Georgetown Lake

To get there I drove Hwy 274 and thoroughly enjoyed it. A peaceful scenic route with little traffic and as an extra bonus it includes a stop to look at what was once the mining mule retirement center.

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Butte mule retirement center

For the next four days I ventured from my campsite exploring the area. Butte, charcoal kilns, Vipond Park, and Quartz Hill. Read the following blog post for those storied.

My camp site was simple and peaceful. I was the only one camping there for four nights. Camping on the Big Hole River.

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My camp site

On the path to the Big Hole River I found this object hanging.

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Perhaps a fisherman’s charm


  • $18/night.
  • No ATT cell service.
  • Although the site is only 6-7 miles from Melrose, it is a slow go.  Plan on twenty minutes or so to get there.