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Missoula Field Office
Release Date: 09/23/09
Contacts: David Abrams 406-533-7617    

Rent Ghost Town Cabins For Winter Getaway

Now is the time to plan for a winter getaway to the ghost town of Garnet, 40 miles east of Missoula.   The Bureau of Land Management has two historic cabins available to rent from December through April. 

Weekend reservations fill quickly, so a lottery drawing will be held the first Friday of November to determine cabin renters. Applications are available now and must be completed by Nov. 6 to be eligible for the lottery. After the lottery, cabin vacancies will be available on a first-come, first-served basis.

Cabins come furnished with beds, dishes, gas cook stoves, lanterns, and wood heat stoves. The Dahl Cabin sleeps up to six for $40 per night, and the McDonald Cabin sleeps four for $30 per night.

The only way to access Garnet in winter is via snowmobile, skis, snowshoes or dog sled. There are two routes into Garnet in the winter:

  • From Highway 200, turn south on the Garnet Range Road between mile markers 22 and 23 and park near the gate about a quarter-mile from Highway 200. The winter journey is about 12 miles with a steady incline from the closed gate to Garnet.
  • Visitors using I-90 should take the Bearmouth or Drummond Exit, then the Frontage Road to Bear Gulch. They can drive to a gate and a small parking area within four miles of the ghost town. This route is shorter but steeper, gaining 1,500 feet before reaching Garnet.
For more information about cabin rentals or to receive an application, call the BLM’s Missoula Field Office at 406-329-3914.
Now one of the best-preserved ghost towns in Montana, Garnet was an active gold-mining town 100 years ago with 1,000 residents, 31 businesses, and 13 saloons.  By the 1920s, the gold had played out, and the once prosperous town slowly went into a deep sleep until its last resident passed away. The ghost town is now publicly owned and managed by the Bureau of Land Management. Proceeds from the cabin rental program are used for the on-going preservation and interpretation of the town.

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land, the most of any Federal agency. This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The BLM's mission is to manage and conserve the public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations under our mandate of multiple-use and sustained yield. In Fiscal Year 2013, the BLM generated $4.7 billion in receipts from public lands.

Missoula Field Office   3255 Ft. Missoula Road      Missoula, MT 59804  

Last updated: 06-28-2012