Blackfoot Pathways: Sculpture in the Wild

When I was a kid, my sister and I would take the Greyhound bus between Missoula and Great Falls. We started out sitting in the front seat so the bus driver could keep an eye on us, but as we got older, we moved further and further back in the bus.

On one trip, there was a bunch of older kids sitting in the last row, so I sat with them. The memory is a bit fuzzy, but I do remember someone having Jack Daniels, so I tried it. Back in those days, you could still smoke in the last few rows of the bus, so that trip consisted of smoking Marlboros and taking sips of whiskey. I learned a lot on those bus trips.

The halfway point between Missoula and Great Falls is Lincoln. The bus stopped at the gas station to pick up new passengers, and let the rest of us off to stretch our legs. If we had a little cash, my sister and I would go in and get a candy bar or something to drink, always mindful of the time. We didn’t want the bus to leave without us.

Up until two weekends ago, that’s all Lincoln was to me–a stop between Missoula and Great Falls. I’ve driven that route a thousand times, but recently I’ve been noticing a sign on the side of the highway just east of Lincoln: Blackfoot Pathways. I looked it up online, and decided I need to stop on one of my trips to check it out.

For various reasons, that never happened. I was either in a hurry, or didn’t think about it until I had passed the turnoff. But the other weekend, friends invited me to their cabin near Lincoln. So it was the perfect time to check it out.

It’s surreal. A sculpture exhibit in (what feels like) the middle of the nowhere. The sculptures themselves are amazing. Made of wood and metal and other media native to the area. There are information boards near each sculpture that tells you a little about the artist and the art. I highly recommend going in the winter when there’s snow on the ground. Granted, I haven’t seen it in the summer yet, (it’s on the list for this summer,) but it’s extremely cool covered in snow.

More information about Sculpture in the Wild

Since I’m planning on going back, I created a project page for this location. All current and future photos can be viewed at the link below.

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