Medicine Lake is a small town in Sheridan County of Montana. The town is in the northeast region of Montana. It has a population of 220 people, making it a small and somewhat rural place. It is known for having a dry climate and being warmer, as the town notably reached a temperature of 117 °F, making it the highest temperature the state of Montana has ever reached.
The town is named for the lake nearby which was known for its medicinal herbs on that shore the Assiniboine found. The lake nearby is also famous for its serene views and wildlife.
Because it’s quite small in size, there is less of a restaurant and arts scene here than in bigger towns. You won’t find much to do in town if you’re looking to mainly shop and stroll around like you would in a bigger city such as Billings or Bozeman. Where the town really shines, is in its close proximity to the outdoors.
The town is near hiking, canoeing, camping, and fishing areas. It’s a great place to enjoy various outdoor recreational activities and relax in nature.
For those who enjoy the charm of small towns and are looking to get away from the big city and relax, Medicine Lake is a great place to visit.
Cultural and Historic Points in Medicine Lake, Montana
Medicine Lake is near several historic points. For those interested in history, particularly the Lewis and Clark expedition, there are a lot of interesting places to explore nearby. Notably, it is near the Missouri River, where the Lewis and Clark expedition traveled, as well as the Fort Union trading post and Fort Buford military post.
Ford Buford is in North Dakota but about an hour away from Medicine Lake, Montana The historic site was once a military post and was built-in 1866. It is most well known for being the place where Hunkpapa Sioux leader, Sitting Bull surrendered in 1881.
Today the site still houses a stone powder magazine, a cemetery site, and the building for the officer’s quarters. There is also now a museum in the officer’s quarters.
Fort Union is also in North Dakota but about an hour away. It was a significant fur trading post on the Missouri River. Assiniboine and other Northern Plains Tribes exchanged various goods with Euro-Americans here such as furs, guns, knives, cookware, and beads. The post traded annually over $25,000 in buffalo robes and $100,000 in merchandise.
Today the site is preserved and visitors can go here to learn more about the history of the trading post. The site even has a bookstore where visitors can buy various souvenirs and educational goods.
Recreational Activities and Things to Do
There is a lot to do near Medicine Lake, particularly for those who enjoy the outdoors and history. The town is near several places great for outdoor activities such as fishing, hiking, wildlife watching, and more.
It is a good place to visit if you are interested in spending time outside and enjoying the nature Montana has to offer.
Medicine Lake Wildlife Refuge
Perhaps the most obvious thing to do in town is to visit the nearby Medicine Lake Wildlife Refuge, which includes Medicine Lake just south of town, the refuge of 11,360 acres is home to not only Medicine Lake but also five smaller lakes.
It is a popular spot for fishing and wildlife watching. Fishing is available year-round at the refuge and can be accessed by boat or shore.
Ice fishing is also available. There are no motorized boats allowed. Brown and golden trout are common here. For wildlife watching, you can expect to see many birds.
The chestnut collared longspur, Baird’s sparrow, McCown’s longspur, and grasshopper sparrow are common here.
The Culbertson Museum
The Culbertson Museum is a museum nearby that offers exhibits showcasing historic and antique items. It is an interesting museum that takes visitors back in time with its various rooms.
It includes a chapel, a 1920s schoolroom, a general store, and other interesting recreations of places you might find.
The museum has a certain charm to it that can make it an interesting and exciting place to visit, as it’s definitely unique. It’s a fun place to stop at well as traveling in Montana if you’re looking for something different to do.
There are a few special events that Medicine Lake has. The town has an Easter Egg Hunt held during April. There is also an event held on the last day of June each year that includes a BBQ, a carnival, and a dance.
For more information on events, you can visit their website here.