Destination Red Lodge

Red Lodge, MT
Red Lodge, Montana

At the Montana end of the Beartooth Highway is the charming historic mining town of Red Lodge. We stayed two nights at the Red Lodge Inn, a simple but comfortable motel, and enjoyed wandering the main street, Broadway, with its many attractive buildings.

The first night, we popped into the Red Lodge Pizza Co. I can’t remember now if the building used to be a post office, but I do remember all the pizzas had names like First Class or Parcel Post, so I suspect it must have been. Mind you, who cares what they were called? They were delicious! That’s it on the left below. To the right is Ox Pasture, just a few doors down. As we inspected the menu, a friendly staff member came out to encourage us in. Sorry, too full of pizza – but she was so enthusiastic that we booked for the next evening. This was a real find – a gourmet restaurant, using local produce, that would not be out of place in the grandest of cities. Easily the most spectacular meal in the whole of our three-week vacation.

Well, we had to work all that food off somehow so we took the Basin Lake Trail, a pretty walk although some of it was still scarred from wildfires in 2008.

On the way back, we stopped at the Red Box Car, a century old railroad car which allegedly serves the best fast food in the whole of the Yellowstone Region. This was just before our gourmet dinner, so we made do with coffee. The location doesn’t look much below, but it was right next to the creek which runs through town so it was relaxing to sit on the deck and listen to the water flowing.

The next day it was Goodbye Montana – our visit was short but sweet – as we set off to recross Wyoming on our way to Rocky Mountain National Park.


58 thoughts on “Destination Red Lodge

  1. Eunice March 6, 2017 / 11:10

    That looks like a nice walk, and the lake looks lovely. I like the idea of the pizzas having names to do with posting things, they sound more interesting than the normal names for pizzas 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Anabel Marsh March 6, 2017 / 15:03

      Thanks Eunice – both the walk and pizza were excellent!


  2. nomad, interrupted March 6, 2017 / 12:19

    The meals sound great, both the post office pizzas and the gourmet meal. The walk looks nice; I especially love Basin Lake and the views from the trail. 🙂


    • Anabel Marsh March 6, 2017 / 15:04

      We loved Red Lodge, having had little idea what to expect beforehand.


  3. maristravels March 6, 2017 / 12:21

    I have so little knowledge of this part of the states, in fact I only know bits of California, Chicago and New Orleans, so I’m a virgin really when it comes to the USA, that everything you write is fascinating. I loved this blog, and the pictures really make it come to life.
    i’ve been reading your blogs over the past few weeks but I’ve been abroad for some time and Word Press would let me comment on them as I had to sign in again with my Password which I couldn’t remember. The perils of moving from a desktop to an IPad – everything went haywire. Now I’m back home with my trusted desktop all is well again and I’m back to following you properly.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Anabel Marsh March 6, 2017 / 15:04

      Thanks Maris, I know the sort of problem – very frustrating!


  4. claudiabookwright March 6, 2017 / 12:47

    My son loves the Red Lodge Clay Center. He’s a potter. He’s done a residency there and goes there to stoke his artistic fires whenever he gets a chance. I’ve never been there, but I like it, too. He lives in Texas and whenever he goes to Red Lodge, he always stays a night or two with us going and coming.


    • Anabel Marsh March 6, 2017 / 15:06

      Quite a trek from Texas! I don’t remember noticing the clay center but it’s a lovely location for it to be. Slowly working my way towards writing about Denver……


  5. goodmorningmumblog March 6, 2017 / 13:05

    Roaming the western Rockies is so spectacular! Enjoying every vista is quite a challenge as everywhere you look is amazing. Great post!


  6. Jemima Pett March 6, 2017 / 14:30

    That looks like my type of walk… and the food sounds good too 😀


  7. Liesbet March 6, 2017 / 15:20

    That mining town looks much cuter than the ones we visited in Northern California. Montana seems to have much to offer. I am looking forward to the day we can explore it in-depth!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Sarah Ferguson and Choppy March 6, 2017 / 17:32

    I’ve had some great meals in places you would never think would have such good food – always a great and wonderful find when that happens!


    • Anabel Marsh March 6, 2017 / 18:23

      This was really amazing. Apparently people travelled quite a long way to visit and I understand why. We were lucky just to stumble on it (or rather, the friendly server stumbled on us.)

      Liked by 1 person

  9. the eternal traveller March 6, 2017 / 17:57

    How great to find so many good food places. I love your photos of Basin Lake, Anabel. ☺


    • Anabel Marsh March 6, 2017 / 18:24

      Thank you. We certainly appreciated finding such good food.


  10. Heyjude March 6, 2017 / 18:42

    Looks like a film set! It amuses me that so many US buildings have interesting historic facades and yet the sides and rear are plain brick! The food sounds good. And Basin Lake very pretty.


  11. Su Leslie March 6, 2017 / 19:38

    Lovely post. The town looks exactly as I want to imagine old-school, small town USA. And the scenery looks spectacular. Add good food and it sounds like a wonderful place to visit one day.


  12. Birgit March 7, 2017 / 02:14

    I love the look of these towns that seem straight out of a western. I would love to go on that hike and see that waterfall. The trip looks so inviting.


    • Anabel Marsh March 7, 2017 / 06:41

      Yes it’s like TV / movies come alive! Without the gunfights of course…..


  13. March 7, 2017 / 05:41

    I love the look of the main street – I hope they didn’t mess it up with any chain stores. Montana is one of about five states I haven’t visited yet. Frank Zappa had a song about going to Montana, and I hope I can get there one of these days too.


    • Anabel Marsh March 7, 2017 / 06:44

      There was a Subway right at the far end by the gas station, but on the whole the street had local businesses. Hehe, I am very familiar with that song – and not necessarily in a good way. John sang it a lot 😉 Apparently he wants to be a dental floss tycoon.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. BeckyB March 7, 2017 / 08:10

    Wow sounds as much a Foodie tour as countryside exploration this week!! Perfect combination I’d say 😎


  15. Hilary Melton-Butcher March 7, 2017 / 08:12

    Hi Anabel – looks a beautiful place – the trail especially so. While glad you found two happy dinner times … and sounds like Red Lodge is a relatively unspoilt part of the world … cheers Hilary


  16. restlessjo March 7, 2017 / 16:50

    You’ve got me singing that Jon Denver song, Country Roads 🙂 Long way from West Virginia, but beautiful.


  17. Ann Coleman March 7, 2017 / 17:06

    The town looks just charming! And the scenery is incredible. The more I read your blog, the more I want to travel.


  18. Peta Kaplan March 7, 2017 / 17:17

    What a charming looking town and beautiful trail. I do love that architecture! The pizza and food sounds so good I was wanting to see some photos 🙂


    • Anabel Marsh March 7, 2017 / 18:08

      I’m not very good at food photos – I tend to dive right in and eat it!


  19. Ellen March 7, 2017 / 23:32

    How fun to find a gourmet restaurant in a tiny town in Montana. I wonder how they do overall. Running restaurants isn’t easy (so many fold under after just a year), especially in small towns.


    • Anabel Marsh March 8, 2017 / 06:38

      Judging by the evening we were there they were doing ok – it was pretty full – but whether it is sustainable long term I don’t know. It was run by a married couple – he was the chef, she managed front of house – so I imagine their entire lives were probably devoted to it. I wish them well.


  20. Blue Sky Scotland March 8, 2017 / 12:33

    That’s something that happens with me as well. If I leave photos or subject posts too long after the event my single brain cell forgets crucial details of why I took certain photos in the first place or what buildings used to be used for. Looks a nice town. Just read a news snippet about many small town shopping malls in the USA in trouble due to online shopping, changing footfall patterns, and empty covered over malls built a few decades ago as the way forward shutting down then getting demolished so the old traditional town centres, like the one featured, may well prove future proof in the long run.


    • Anabel Marsh March 8, 2017 / 16:43

      I much prefer a town / city centre at home or abroad! Braehead holds no charms for me.


  21. Jessica (Diverting Journeys) March 8, 2017 / 13:43

    I’ll admit, knowing what I know about America, there is no way I would have expected a place in Montana called “Ox Pasture” to have any vegetarian options, let alone tofu, but they’ve proved me wrong! Makes it even sadder that there’s still so many places in Ohio where I’ve had to survive off of fries, or the occasional bland, mushy, veggie burger.


    • Anabel Marsh March 8, 2017 / 16:46

      Well, me too! There was only one option so I could only eat there once – but that’s all I needed. And I did have my best veggie burger ever on this holiday so apart from the hell that was the restaurant at Yellowstone I did quite well.

      Liked by 1 person

  22. inesephoto March 8, 2017 / 21:53

    Thank you for the opportunity to see these amazing places! I love the Rockies and hope to travel more when my granddaughters are older.


  23. Donna March 9, 2017 / 02:11

    Interesting places, stunning scenery, great hikes, wonderful food and delicious coffee…your blog continues to lure me in with these key ingredients every time!


  24. Sartenada March 12, 2017 / 07:13

    Very interesting to see Montana photos. Thank You.


  25. j'adore champagne March 13, 2017 / 19:17

    When I lived in Billings, MT we used to go to Red Lodge for a couple days if we could get some time off. Love it there. I used to work as a “Petroleum Landman” (woman) in the Williston Basin and then ended up living in Billings for a couple years. Beautiful country. Glad you liked it!


    • Anabel Marsh March 13, 2017 / 20:08

      Oh, fabulous place to live! I think a lot of people from Billings come down to that restaurant these days.



  26. Her Lost Mango March 15, 2017 / 04:22

    OH! Love this post! I just followed you! Would love to connect with you! I’m Chy from Her Lost Mango! Nice to meet you! I just posted my Switzerland and Amsterdam trip! Paris, Italy and London is going to be up too! Some of my Europe trip is up now! I just posted too my favorite fashion pieces too. Hope to hear from you! XOXO lovelots! – Chy


    • Anabel Marsh March 20, 2017 / 10:41

      Apologies, just found this in spam! Thanks for visiting.


  27. lisadorenfest March 25, 2017 / 10:27

    Love Montana. You and John have captured it beautifully as always.


  28. jazzfeathers March 30, 2017 / 20:53

    It’s so weird to look at your pictures. When I went to America, my American friend drove me to her house in Vermont, which stands near a town that looks much like the one in your pictures. That one wasn’t historical, but it was such a strange (and interesting) experience walking down its streets, because it was just like some of the places I saw in tv series as I grew up.

    The environment was just as breathtaking. That’s what I love most about America.


    • Anabel Marsh March 30, 2017 / 21:28

      Yes, it’s the landscapes I love, but the towns are interesting too – and as you say, so familiar from films and tv.


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