Noted for its wide-open spaces, beautiful blue skies, and tranquil scenery of open prairies spreading upward to stately forests, Ekalaka's setting is a living painting. There's lots of room, lots of time, lots of space, and leisurely meals among friendly people. Entertainment comes in measures of peace and quiet.
Kids vs. Broncs
Sponsored by the Ekalaka Track and Arena. Inc., the annual Youth Rodeo is the third Saturday in July and features over 200 contestants from five states.
Last weekend in July at Carter County Museum. Offering lectures and activities for guests 4-84. For complete listing go to website cartercountymuseum.org.
Broncs, Quilts and Art
The Carter County "Days of '85" (1885) Fair and Rodeo the second weekend in August is highlighted by horse shows, rodeos, fair exhibits, vendor sales, street dances, and a Sunday parade. Volunteer firemen host a Friday evening barbecue followed by lively entertainment, sponsored by local EMTs. Friday and Saturday evening spotlight an old fashioned street dance with DJs and live bands. Sunday is the parade sponsored by Carter County Chamber of Commerce, and after the parade is a jam session under the tent.
The Artists of the Prairie hosts an annual art show during the "Days of 85", featuring over 100 works of prominent local and non-resident artists and photographers. The weekend is wrapped in good old-fashioned fun. The only glitz is in the western skies above it.
Keep Yer Powder Dry
The annual Black Powder Rifle Shoot, held in early September, is a trip back in history. Black powder enthusiasts gather in period dress of the 1840s-90s, to compete for prizes in both the novice and master categories with muzzle loader and lever action rifles of the pioneer period. It's a popular event that grows every year.
Puptown Round Robin Roping and Ranch Rodeo
The Puptown Round Robin Roping and Ranch Rodeo, sponsored by Ekalaka Track and Arena, Inc. in early September, brings top ropers to town each year from several states. The roping event and calcutta are great sport for fans and contestants alike.
Medicine Rocks State Park
An almost unbelievable site that provides free year-round camping, picnic tables, and outdoor restrooms is 12 miles north on Hwy. 7. Free admission. Campers maintain the site with the pack in, pack out policy.
First County Museum
The first museum founded in Montana, the Carter County Museum, is the home of the duck billed dinosaur, one of three known skeletons of its kind in the world. The collection includes a complete triceratops skull and dome dinosaur skull. Indian artifacts dating to the Stone Age, as well as late 1800s ranch and homestead artifacts (including an 1882 pioneer cabin) are on exhibit. Visit our website at CarterCountyMuseum-Ekalaka.org to learn more.
On Montana's Dinosaur Trail
Ekalaka's Carter County Museum is among 15 dinosaur adventure and education sites featured in a new brochure that puts you on an exciting dinosaur trail. Check us out in the Visit Southeastern Montana vacation guide to see an overview of the trail and of the facilities that are waiting to tell you their stories. Carter County Museum has a web site: CarterCountyMuseum.org.
Trails End Ranch
Nestled in the pines, this camp is designed for youth from third through twelfth grades. The camp offers activities which include hiking, mountain biking, horseback trail rides, crafts, rappelling, rodeo, drama, basketball, paint ball and much more in a 1:8 adult-to-youth ratio. Sessions start the first week in June and run through the second week in August. Family camps, retreats and hunting are also offered throughout the year. (406) 775-6401. www.ter.org.
Located 7 miles south of Ekalaka, on National Forest land, this camp offers summer facilities for family reunions, receptions and camping with hookups. A refurbished CCC (Civilian Conservation Corps) camp set in the pines, it is a secluded, wonderful place for large groups to gather. For reservations, call Amy Baugh (406) 775-6208 campneedmore.org. Though closed in winter, the camp offers cross-country skiing and snowmobiling opportunities.
Fly In: The airport, located just south-east of Ekalaka, offers aerial travelers a 3,800 ft. lighted, paved runway and tie downs.
Medical: The Dahl Memorial Healthcare Assn. Inc. (Clinic, Hospital, and Nursing Home) provides medical services to residents and guests to the community.
McNab Pond: A trout-fishing pond is the centerpiece of this small campground in the pines 8 miles south of Ekalaka off Hwy. 323. Free admission. May 1 to Nov. 15, outdoor toilets, pack in and pack out policy.
Alzada is now a more easily accessible discovery. Don't miss the annual Alzada Poetry, Music, and Art Show in October for a taste of the real West.
Take Hwy. 323 over 58 miles of paved highway, with the last 14 miles scheduled for paving in 2010.
After that, continue your trip south on Hwy. 212 to Hulett, WY, and beyond, and you will arrive at Devils Tower National Monument. Hwy 212 also goes west to Little Bighorn Battlefield.
Lantis Spring is a Forest Service campground 3 miles west of Camp Crook, SD on Hwy 20 southeast of Ekalaka. It accommodates trailers up to16 feet, has restrooms, and drinking water. No fee, pack in and pack out policy, May 1 to Nov. 15.
From Alzada on U.S. Highway 212, travelers reach the communities of Hammond and Boyes. Winter travelers are encouraged to attend the Boyes Community Club Italian Dinner featuring authentic Italian cuisine, prepared by local cooks with family roots in Old Italy. The dinner is in February at the Boyes Community Hall, located on U.S. Highway 212, 3 miles east of Boyes.
Baker is 36 miles north on Hwy 7.
Livestock and Wildlife
Though sheep and cattle production are the primary industries of Carter County, the area produces mule deer, whitetail deer, pronghorn antelope, elk, turkey, grouse, sage hens, pheasants, trout, bass and bluegill. Wildlife abundance in Carter County has long enticed sportsmen to this comer of the state.
Custer National Forest: Chalk Buttes, Long Pines, and Ekalaka Hills near Ekalaka, are Custer National Forest lands that provide excellent hunting. The Long Pines is noted for the Capital Rock National Natural Landmark. This area also is known for having a very high density of nesting raptors. For information about this section of Custer National Forest call the Billings administrative office (406) 657-6200.
The Beaver Creek Rendezvous, organized by Leonard A. Livingston, located on the LA Ranch north of Ekalaka, gives disabled hunters from around the country an opportunity to hunt deer, antelope, and turkeys.