Garnet Ghost Town

March 20, 2018  •  2 Comments

Garnet Ghost Town, Montana

While visiting in Montana, and on my way to Washington State, I scanned my maps looking for places of interest along the way. I was looking for historic locations when spotted this little dot called “Garnet Ghost Town” just a bit north off the highway. Oh how exciting to visit a real ghost town in the beautiful Montana mountains!

Garnet Ghost Town HomesThree homes on the hillside in the historic town of Garnet, Montana

I took the shortest distance on the map. This road soon turned in to a slightly muddy road. I was pulling my 5th wheel at the time. When we come upon another car coming down the road, I waved them down to ask if I could get the trailer up the mountain. They recommended a meadow area where there was parking for me to drop the trailer. Boy, was I lucky to have met them! The road was very windy and only one lane for a major part of the climb.

MontanaBack road to Garnet Ghost Town

The funniest thing was, once we got to the top, there were school buses. Large school buses. Haha, if I had known the area better, I could have taken the paved roads right to this historic little town. Oh well, our way was much more like finding an old town left to the wilderness and hidden away, as it must have been in it’s day! :-)

Garnet Ghost Town Wells HotelWells Hotel guest room

Bureau of Land Management’s description:

In 1898, Garnet was a booming gold camp with nearly 1,000 residents. The town included four stores, four hotels, three livery stables, two barber shops, a union hall, a school, a butcher shop, a candy shop, a doctor’s office, an assay office, and thirteen saloons. 

The surrounding mountains were rich in gold-bearing quartz so Garnet grew rapidly until about 1905 when many of the mines were abandoned. The 1910 census found only 150 residents. In 1912, fire destroyed many of the commercial buildings and by the 1920’s Garnet was a ghost town. 

Garnet is one of Montana’s most intact ghost towns. It symbolizes an important era in Montana’s hard rock mining history. Substantial effort has gone into stabilizing and protecting the remaining historic structures. 

Garnet is managed by the Bureau of Land Management and the garnet Preservation Association, a nonprofit organization. This cooperative effort is preserving the town for the enjoyment of the public.


Click HERE to see a few more of the photos captured.

Thank YOU for stopping by! We hope you enjoyed this side trip.



Lynn Lyday Russell(non-registered)
You must have had a super time taking photos as they are fabulous!
Gary Maston(non-registered)
Very nice pictures I need to do some exploring.
No comments posted.


Howdy! Thank you for choosing to follow along with us!

In order to catch you up to speed, if you are just joining in, I want to let you know about my personal project. My faithful companion, Rider (a gorgeous Australian Cattle Dog) and I, have been traveling on an Adventure, for a few years now… following the Central Overland Pony Express Trail.

Carla and Rider at Round FortRound Fort is between Ibapah and Callao Utah. It is also called Canyon Station. The Pony Express Canyon Station was further West of here though... This rock fortress was built the year after the Pony Express had ended.

Currently we are working on a Photo Journal, that will be an Ebook, with our personal experiences on the road. I started this journey, due to a visit to Fort Churchill, with my family in 2014. I read how it was built to protect the Pony Express Riders and the California Emigrant Trail. I have always been fascinated with the old West, and that of course included the Pony.  On that day, surprised to find such a fortress still standing, I wanted to know if there were more!  The photos I have captured, of these gems in the desert, will be in a Photo Book/Coffee Table Book. There will also be some History of the Stations, Station Keepers, Hostlers and the Riders.

Very naively I started this journey with the thought that the Pony Express "Auto Route" would drive me conveniently near all the ruins... Well, that was silly, and now I know better!

Please continue to "Ride Shotgun in Spirit" with us as we visit Historical Places along the route, and visit many Museums that house Archives of the daring young, and some not so young, Riders of the Infamous Pony Express!

Occasional we will also share with you many of the other sights seen along the way while traveling through California, Nevada and Utah.

We have decided to stop the book and journey for the time being at Salt Lake City, UT for a couple of reasons;

  • One) We have thousands of Photos with just these 3 States alone.
  • Two) The History of the Riders is pretty much split as Salt Lake being the middle. Though geographically that is not so. The 2 Divisions that will be included in our first book, are at the most Western end of the Trail.

There are 3 more Divisions from Salt Lake City to St. Joseph Missouri. Lord Willing, we will make a book Two!

We are so blessed to have YOU to share this Journey with us.


January February March April May June July August September October (2) November (1) December (1)
January February March April May (3) June (1) July August September October November December (1)
January February March April May (1) June July August September October November December
January February March April May June July August September October November December
January February March April May June July August September October November December
January February March April May June July August September October November December