Elkhorn Ghost Town & Cemetery
Begin your day with a drive to the Elkhorn Ghost Town, just about an hour outside of Helena. Head south of Helena on I-15 to Boulder. Follow signs to Elkhorn State Park, which is approximately seven miles south of Boulder. Be sure to stop by one of Helena’s many sandwich shops on the way out of town to grab a sack lunch for the journey. A personal favorite is a unique “tube/clubfoot” sandwich from the Staggering Ox. At the ghost town, you’ll see remnants of the old mine, a shoemaker’s shop and a saloon. The cemetery provides a fascinating and somewhat eerie memory of those who lived here. The cemetery location isn’t well signed. Follow the road up and to the right of the main buildings. If you’re into geocaching, there’s a cache right near the cemetary. Check out this link for information on the Elkhorn State Park.
There are several great hikes in the Elkhorn mountain range with trail heads right at the Ghost Town. There are also many picnic tables in the area.
Soak at the Boulder Hot Springs Soak and swim in the 104-degree mineral-rich geothermal baths. You can’t help but to think that Boulder Hot Springs just looks haunted. Boulderhotsprings.com You’ll pass Boulder on your way to Elkhorn so it will be easy to find on your way back toward Helena. Boulder Host Springs is well-signed and located just off Hwy 69.
Dinner at the Windbag Saloon
The Windbag (now a restaurant) was once the home of Big Dorothy’s, a house of ill repute, located in Helena’s former Red Light District. This great restaurant features Monatna steaks and burgers. The daily specials offer smple rich flavors from pastas to fish. Be sure to have a glass of the house wine: Whore House Red. You can buy a bottle to take home with you.