Camping In Southwest Montana: Vigilante Creek At The Madison Bend
Camp Montana: I’m talking with Roger Lang today. He’s going to tell us about camping at Vigilante Creek at The Madison Bend in Montana. Roger, why don’t you start by giving us a little bit of background on that area
Roger: Yellow Stone Park is a very high plateau, and the three great North American River Systems. The Green River, which feeds the Colorado, the Snake River, which feeds the Columbia, and then the Upper Missouri, which is the combination of the Dallas and the Madison and the Jefferson. Basically you end up in Louisiana at the mouth of the Mississippi. So, all great river systems in the lower 48 start in the Yellow Stone plateau.
Camp Montana: Sure.
Roger: And one of those rivers is the Madison River. It’s a fly-fishing mecca, full of wildlife. It comes right out of the Yellow Stone Park to the west, and that’s where the campsite is situated. So, the Bend refers to the big bend in the Madison River. Vigilante Creek is one of the small creeks that feeds it. It’s a tributary right there, where we have an RV campground and cabins for rent.
Camp Montana: Okay. And what are the most popular activities there? You mentioned fly-fishing. What are some of the other things that the guests do there?
Roger: Well, there’s unlimited hiking. Immediately nearby are also mountain lakes, about ten minutes away, for canoeing. There’s unlimited hiking. Most of the people are drawn there for hunting and fishing.
Camp Montana: Okay, so it’s really the crew that wants to get away, kind of out into more pristine wilderness. And how close are some of the nearest towns?
Roger: West Yellow Stone is about a half hour away, and Ennis, Montana is about half hour away.
Camp Montana: Oh, okay.
Roger: So it’s pretty remote. It’s a remote stretch of the Madison. There is a little restaurant and grill just nearby called the Grizzly Bar, and then there’s lots of public access to public land. It’s a getaway. It’s for people who want to fish, hunt, hike, and be close to Yellow Stone, and maybe they can’t find a place to camp inside Yellow Stone Park. And this is only 35 minutes outside the Western Gate.
Camp Montana: Sure. Sure. So, how does somebody go about booking a space there, Roger?
Roger: Well, we don’t have a book online yet. We’re planning to do that this year. So, you can call the 406-682-3025 number.
Camp Montana: Okay.
Roger: And we will get back to you on availability for both the RV slips and the cabins. The cabins and the RV slips are situated immediately above the Madison River. So, one of the things that you enjoy there is a view of, say, bald eagles or osprey plucking trout out of the Madison River.
Camp Montana: Wow.
Roger: So, there’s also a lot of just wildlife viewing, and a lot of people spend time. And I don’t want to make this sound like it’s just for fishermen and hunters and hikers. The wildlife viewing is pretty spectacular. And depending on the time of year you come, you can see some large mammals as well. Elk, moose, of course deer, and then the predators – wolves and bears live nearby.
Camp Montana: Sure. Now, is it open year round?
Roger: It’s open seasonally from May through hunting season.
Camp Montana: Okay. What’s your favorite time of the year there?
Roger: I like it when all the wildlife have babies in May and June. The place comes alive. It greens up beautiful. You know, eagles have eaglettes. All the elk, moose, deer and (Unclear 4:20.9) have babies. It’s just kind of one of those times of year when everybody kicks their feet up.
Camp Montana: Yeah, great. Well, we’ll get this information out and we’ll get this phone number out on our website, Roger, and thank you again for taking some time out of your day to tell us about the camping at Vigilante Creek.
Roger: Good luck to you guys.