Red Lodge Montana: Drive to the Top 9 Nearby Places!

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Red lodge Montana is a small metropolis positioned within the Beartooth Mountains of southern Montana. It is recognized for its outdoor recreational possibilities, including snowboarding, hiking, and fishing, as well as its wealthy mining history.

The city is also domestic to the Red Lodge Montana’s motel, a popular ski vacation spot.

Red lodge Montana’s foremost street is coated with historical buildings and unbiased shops, making it a popular traveler vacation spot for the duration of the summertime months. So this text may also help you like a self-guided tour to discover this vicinity.

History of Red Lodge Montana

Red Lodge Montana is a small town with a rich history dating back to the late 1800s. The town was founded in 1884 when coal was discovered in the area, and it quickly became a bustling mining town.

Close up of the head and shoulders of a captive gray wolf in sunlight. Photographed with a shallow depth of field in the Yellowstone Wildlife Sanctuary in Red Lodge, Montana.
Photo by Teresa Otto from Shutterstock

The coal mines brought a diverse population of immigrants from all over Europe, including Irish, Welsh, Italian, and Croatian miners. These immigrants formed tight-knit communities and left a lasting impact on the town’s culture and heritage.

Red Lodge’s mining industry flourished during the early 20th century, and the town became one of the largest coal-producing areas in the state of Montana.

However, the Great Depression and the rise of alternative energy sources led to a decline in the coal industry, and many of the mines were closed in the 1930s.

How to Reach Red Lodge Montana?

Red lodge Montana is a small town located in the Beartooth Mountains of south-central Montana. It is situated about 50 miles south of Billings, the largest city in Montana, and about 30 miles north of the Wyoming border.

  • Red Lodge Montana is easily accessible by car via the Beartooth Highway (US 212) which is a National Scenic Byway and an All-American Road and provides access to the town from the east and west.
  • The nearest major airport to Red Lodge Montana is Billings Logan International Airport, which is about a 1.5-hour drive away.

3. Some of the Best-Visitor Places Nearby

Here are some nearby places to visit in Red Lodge Montana.

3.1. Beartooth Highway

Officially known as the Beartooth All-American Road, it is a 68-mile-long scenic byway that winds its way through the Beartooth Mountains in Montana and Wyoming.

Beartooth highway through Wyoming, Montana.
Photo by Sam Spicer from Shutterstock

The Beartooth Highway offers breathtaking views of the surrounding wilderness, including glaciers, alpine lakes, and wildflowers.

It also provides access to a variety of outdoor recreational opportunities, such as hiking, fishing, and camping. The highway is open from late spring to early fall, and it’s a popular destination for cyclists, motorcyclists, and car enthusiasts.

3.2. Carbon County Steakhouse

Carbon County Steakhouse in Red Lodge Montana is a popular tourist attraction for its classic western-style atmosphere, delicious home-style cooking, and breathtaking views of the Beartooth Mountains.

Carbon County Stakehouse official website screenshot

Located near the historic Red Lodge Mountain ski area, the restaurant offers hearty steaks, burgers, and ribs prepared with fresh, local ingredients.

In addition to its delicious steaks, Carbon County Steakhouse is also known for its friendly service and cozy, rustic atmosphere. The steakhouse has a casual, western-style décor that evokes the spirit of the old west and creates a welcoming and comfortable atmosphere.

3.3. Rock Creek

Rock Creek is a picturesque stream located in the Beartooth Mountains of south-central Montana. The creek is known for its crystal-clear waters, which are home to a variety of fish species, including rainbow trout, cutthroat trout, and brook trout.

Rock Creek is a popular destination for fly fishing and is considered one of the best fishing spots in the area.

Red Lodge Montana
Image by Stephen Beaumont on Shutterstock

The creek is surrounded by beautiful wilderness and offers a variety of hiking trails that range from easy to challenging. The Rock Creek Vista Point is a must-see destination for visitors, it offers an incredible panoramic view of the Beartooth Mountains, and it’s a great spot for picnics, and bird watching.

3.4. Yellowstone Wildlife Sanctuary

Yellowstone Wildlife Sanctuary, located in Red Lodge Montana, is a non-profit organization dedicated to the rescue, rehabilitation, and release of native wildlife.

The sanctuary is home to a variety of animals, including bears, wolves, elk, and bison, and provides a safe and natural environment for them to live in.

Red Lodge Montana
Photo by Chloe Leis on Unsplash

Visitors can take guided tours of the sanctuary, which provide an in-depth look at the lives of the animals and the work of the sanctuary staff. The tours are educational and interactive, making them a great experience for visitors of all ages.

3.5. Wild Bill Lake

Wild Bill Lake in Red Lodge Montana is an ideal destination for the outdoor enthusiast. Located at the base of the majestic Beartooth Mountains, the lake is surrounded by stunning scenery and abundant wildlife.

Wild Bill Lake Picnic Ground is located in the Custer National Forest in southwest Montana. A short drive from Red Lodge and near the Beartooth Highway.
Photo by Edward Fielding from Shutterstock

The lake provides a variety of activities, including fishing, boating, canoeing, and kayaking. In the summer, visitors can also swim in the lake, or take a leisurely stroll along the nearby trails.

For the more adventurous, Wild Bill Lake is also a great spot for camping and hiking. With its clear waters, beautiful views, and abundance of recreational activities, Wild Bill Lake is truly a unique and unforgettable destination.

3.6. Montana Candy Emporium

If you are fond of sweets and candy, then this place is for you! The Montana Candy Emporium, located in Red Lodge Montana, is a sweet lover’s paradise.

The shop specializes in homemade candy and chocolates, made with only the finest ingredients and traditional methods. The emporium offers a wide variety of treats, including fudge, truffles, toffee, and caramels, all made in-house.

Montana Candy Emporium official website screenshot

The Montana Candy Emporium is located in the heart of Red Lodge Montana, making it an ideal spot to stop by while exploring the town.

It’s a short walk from the Carbon County Historical Society and Museum and the Red Lodge Clay Center, and it’s a short drive from the Beartooth Highway and the Red Lodge Mountain Resort.

3.7. Clay Center

The Red Lodge Clay Center, located in Red Lodge Montana, is a premier destination for ceramic arts and education.

The center offers a wide range of classes, workshops, and events for people of all ages and skill levels. The center is dedicated to promoting the ceramic arts and providing educational opportunities to the community.

Red Lodge City Centre official website screenshot

The Red Lodge Clay Center has a state-of-the-art studio, equipped with top-of-the-line equipment and materials, including pottery wheels, kilns, and glazes.

The studio is open to members and students, providing them with the opportunity to work on their own projects and learn new techniques.

The gallery features a rotating selection of works, including pottery, sculpture, and tile, showcasing the diversity and quality of ceramic art in the region.

3.8. Carbon County Historical Society & Museum

The Carbon County Historical Society and Museum, located in Red Lodge Montana, is a must-visit destination for history buffs and anyone interested in the rich heritage of the area.

The museum offers a fascinating glimpse into the history of Carbon County and the surrounding region, showcasing a variety of exhibits that cover everything from the area’s Native American heritage to the gold and coal mining industries that helped shape the region.

3.9. Red lodge Skiing

Red Lodge Skiing in Red Lodge Montana is a great tourist attraction! It is located in the Beartooth Mountains and offers some of the best skiing in the area.

It is home to over 1,600 acres of ski-able terrain and includes a variety of trails for all levels of skiers. From gentle beginner slopes to challenging double black diamond runs, there is something for everyone at Red Lodge Skiing.

There are also plenty of amenities and services, such as a ski school, ski rentals, restaurants, and more. For those looking to stay longer, there are a variety of hotels, cabins, and lodges in the area.

Whether you’re a first-time skier or a seasoned veteran, Red Lodge Skiing is a great place to get out and enjoy the beautiful outdoors of Montana.

4. Taste the Mouth Smacking Food at Red Lodge Montana

Red Lodge Montana, is a charming mountain town that offers a wide variety of delicious food options for visitors.

The town is known for its hearty, comforting cuisine that is influenced by local agriculture and the region’s mining and cowboy heritage. Here are some of the most popular foods in Red Lodge Montana that you should try:

4.1. The Pollo Loco

Pollo Loco is a local favorite spot in Red Lodge for Mexican food. Tacos and burritos are especially popular. The atmosphere is casual and inviting.

4.2. The Red Lodge Ales

Red Lodge Ales official website screenshot

This is the place to go for a cold beer. The beers are locally brewed and there are plenty of options. The atmosphere is laid-back and the staff is friendly.

4.3. The Red Lodge Pizza Company

Red Lodge pizza official website screenshot

This is a great spot for pizza. The pizzas are made with fresh ingredients and the atmosphere is casual.

4.4. The Red Lodge Grill & Bar

This is a great spot for a burger or a steak. The menu also has plenty of other options. The atmosphere is casual and the staff is friendly.

Red Lodge Grills official website screenshot

It is also worth visiting some of the local restaurants and cafes to sample the cuisine and ask locals for their recommendations.


In conclusion, Red Lodge Montana is a picturesque mountain town that offers visitors a wide variety of activities and attractions.

Photo by melissamn from Shutterstock

From skiing and snowboarding at Red Lodge Mountain Resort to hiking and camping in the nearby Custer Gallatin National Forest, there is something for everyone in this charming town.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. What is Red Lodge, Montana known for?

Red Lodge, Montana is known for its beautiful mountain scenery, outdoor recreational opportunities, and rich history and culture.

2. What is the population of Red Lodge, Montana?

As of the 2020 Census, the population of Red Lodge, Montana was 2,125.

3. What is the best time to visit Red Lodge, Montana?

The best time to visit Red Lodge, Montana depends on the type of activities you are interested in. The summer months of June to August are popular for hiking and fishing, while the winter months of December to February are popular for skiing and snowboarding. The fall months of September and October are also great times to visit, as the changing leaves offer beautiful scenery.

4. What are some popular things to do in Red Lodge, Montana?

Some popular things to do in Red Lodge, Montana include hiking in the Beartooth Mountains, fishing in the local streams and rivers, skiing and snowboarding at the Red Lodge Mountain Resort, and visiting the Carbon County Historical Society and Museum.

5. What is the nearest airport to Red Lodge, Montana?

The nearest airport to Red Lodge, Montana is Red Lodge Airport, which offers regional flights from Billings, Montana.



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