Along the road to #ONHereWeCome, we made several stops. As a family, we had decided to balance our daily kilometer targets with a little fun! One of our first stops was at the Lewis and Clark Caverns. We camped overnight in the Lewis and Clark Caverns Campground. When we arrived at night, it was dark. When the RV door swung open that next morning, the view that greeted us was incredible. Staying at the campground was convenient, as we were on the first tour of the caverns the next day. To book your reservation, follow this link.
Lewis & Clark Caverns
Location: Whitehall, Montana http://stateparks.mt.gov/lewis-and-clark-caverns/
Address: 25 Lewis and Clark Caverns Rd.
Cost: Tour: $10 adult, $5 kids 6-11 yrs, FREE for kids under 5 years (May-September)
RV Friendly?: There is a parking lot at the upper Visitor Centre that will accommodate. The road up is winding but it is possible.
Fitness Level: Must be able to hike 2 miles, do stairs & hike a steep hill path
Baby Friendly?: Not stroller friendly, can do with a soft structured carrier. Must carry baby on your front when in caves.
Estimated Stay Length: 2 hours minimum, more if you meander & try the amenities (playground, single track mtn biking & more!)
Worth the Trip?: Without a doubt – the limestone caves are truly one of a kind.
We drove up to the Upper Visitor Center to register for a tour. We waited approximately 10 minutes for our tour guide, Holly to begin. With the many views and interpretive signs around the Center, it was easy to keep entertained while we waited. Mr J even got a spot of rock climbing on the pillars in.
The path to the Caverns is a gravel trail, and sits at 4,300 ft of elevation. There is definitely an elevation gain along the hiking trail. For those not in top form physically, or travelling with little children, thankfully there are benches. The benches are throughout the path allowing you a chance to sit, have a drink of water and take in the view.
Along the trail, there is also large deposits of fossils throughout the rock faces. We enjoyed learning about all the different kinds and types that existing millions of years ago.
Once you enter the Caverns, they are lit up by electrical lights making it easy to find your way. Up and down through the main flights of stairs, and the all important Beaver Slide, we learnt about stalactites, stalagmites, columns, and helictites. Holly the Tour Guide entertained us with stories of certain faces, and yummy sounding deposits like bacon and eggs.
The Caverns are naturally air-conditioned with the temperature staying about 48 F (9 C). They sit at an elevation of over 5,300 ft at the tallest spot. One of the stairs within our trail proclaimed we were 1 mile high above sea level.
Have you hiked the Lewis and Clark Caverns? What did you think?
a passionate recreation coordinator by day, crazy farm mama of two by night. i live outdoors: growing my own food, camping and hiking with my border collie with two active kids in tow. when I’m not writing, I’m experimenting with recipes, and crafts – or anything else that might keep the monkeys entertained.