Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Gates of the Mountains Boat Tour - Helena Montana


During my visit to Helena Montana, I frequently asked locals if they had only a day (or so) to spend in Helena, what would they recommend that I must do.  Almost at 100% was the suggestion to take the Gates of the Mountains boat tour (wikipedia).

Located about 20 minutes north of the city (and a super easy drive) this was a no brainer and we made it just in time to catch the noon departure.  The boat was about 90% full, which surprised me for a Sunday morning.  

I paid $16 each for Shari and I and despite some threatening clouds, we took off right at noon. This was probably the best activity we did on our trip and visitors shouldn't miss out on the opportunity to do this one.

The Boat Tour

The boat tour starts on the Upper Holter Lake and takes tourists northward up the Missouri River.  The tour was slated for about two hours and sure enough the tour did take two hours.  

The Missouri River is surrounded by canyon-like walls of ancient limestone that is spectacular to behold.  There is a lot of history here, from the Lewis and Clark expedition, to modern day tragedies.

Our tour guide was awesome too as he seemed to have an eye for details -- including spotting eagles and ospreys.  He also seemed to have a story for every nook and crevice of the canyon.  I think the entire boat was enthralled and hung on his every word.

I was expecting only a little tour of the canyon, but we went pretty far back and got the opportunity to see it all (before it went to less exciting hills).  I snapped a ton of pictures, which I have shared below:

Mann Gulch Fire Historical Marker

Notice the rock formations and how they are vertical

Some 700 year old pictographs

Some 700 year old pictographs

Some 700 year old pictographs

Note: the moss you see on the rock isn't moss... it is from the Rose Family.

No comments:

Post a Comment