Emigrant General Store
Photo courtesy: John Ansotegui
Emigrant is on the Yellowstone River halfway between Livingston and Gardiner on Highway 89. It gets its name because the town is at the base of a mountain range containing Emigrant Peak, which rises to an altitude of 10,960 feet. Thomas Curry discovered gold in Emigrant Gulch in 1863, after which a great number of prospector "emigrants" came to the area hoping to strike it rich. Early trappers and prospectors bathed in crude vats built around a natural hot springs here. Emigrant trains arriving near the narrow entrance to the gulch in 1864 found a lone pine tree in which eighteen or twenty elk horn had been embedded. Jim Bridger, a famous scout and guide who worked for the Rocky Mountain Fur Company, and built Fort Bridger in 1842, asserted that he had placed them there 25 years earlier. (from Cheney's Names on the Face of Montana, Mountain Press Publishing Company)
Emigrant offers plenty of fishing opportunities along the Yellowstone River as well as camping, fishing, and boating at the nearby Dailey Lake. Yellowstone National Park is just 30 miles south of Emigrant. It is the world's first National Park, also the largest in the United States. Yellowstone contains more than 2.2 million acres of steaming geysers, thundering waterfalls, crystalline lakes, and panoramic vistas. It has the world's most extensive area of geyser activity, harboring more than 10,000 thermal features.The northern entrance through Gardiner is the only year-round entrance to automobiles to the park and offers opportunities of wildlife watching, hiking, fishing, cross-country skiing, snowcoach and snowmoniling.
Near Emigrant one also finds Chico Hot Springs. Chico Hot Springs Resort and Day Spa offers the quintessential Montana experience. Established in 1900 and on the National Historic Register, Chico is a year-round destination resort offering lodging, fine dining, a full day spa, and a natural hot springs pool. Here you can enjoy hiking, fishing, horseback riding, mountain biking, dog sledding and cross-country skiing.
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