Author Topic: Bannack State Park  (Read 2166 times)

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Offline knolltop

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Bannack State Park
« on: March 24, 2011, 09:31:08 am »
Bannack SP is approx 4 mi off TA route between Jackson & Dillon, MT.
Anyone have experience reaching the park from TA route and camping experience?
What about it as a rest day?
Thanks!
« Last Edit: March 24, 2011, 01:55:59 pm by knolltop »
+-+ Michael +-+

Offline valygrl

Re: Bannack State Park
« Reply #1 on: March 24, 2011, 10:30:24 am »
Haven't been there - but have been on that road, I would totally take the rest day at Dillon (since you're planning it now) - it's a real small town, cute downtown, bars, restaurants, outdoor retailers (including Patagonia outlet. I'm wearing a fleece from there right now!) and a great Mexican joint in an old school bus at the north end of town.  There's an RV park in town where i stayed.

Sorry I'm not answering your actual question. :)

(Edit - woah, something weird happened with the forum posts there... did my post over-write someone else's post?)
« Last Edit: March 24, 2011, 10:31:57 am by valygrl »

Offline staehpj1

Re: Bannack State Park
« Reply #2 on: March 24, 2011, 10:39:56 am »
Hmmm, my post went off into never never land so I'll tray again.

+1 on hitting the Patagonia Outlet in Dillon.  We got some good bargains there and they shipped items purchased home for free for cyclists.

Sorry, but I can't comment on Bannack State Park either.  I will add another place in the area worth checking out if you pass through there.  Twin Bridges is a nice friendly town and has a free cycle camp.  http://www.cyclecamp-twinbridges.com/Cycle-Camp-project.html

The camp wasn't built yet when we passed through in 2007, but it sounds pretty cool.  We stayed in the fairgrounds then and found the town nice and friendly.

Edit:
FWIW we got less enchanted with state parks and also less enchanted with going off route for camping more and more as our Trans America tour went on.  We did love the Oregon parks, but after that state parks were just not the best places to stay when there were other options.  We also found planning individual stops more than a day or two in advance was not for us.  You may or may not find the same.
« Last Edit: March 24, 2011, 10:53:41 am by staehpj1 »

Offline John Nettles

Re: Bannack State Park
« Reply #3 on: March 24, 2011, 10:40:35 am »
While I can't comment directly on Bannack SP as I have not been there, I also agree that Dillon is a nice town.

Also, you might edit your question since this is on the TransAm & Great Divide routes, not the Northern Tier route.

<< I too had a weird "Session time out while posting, please ty to resubmit your message" message that I have not seen before. >>
Happy trails and may the wind be at your back!
John

Offline indyfabz

Re: Bannack State Park
« Reply #4 on: March 24, 2011, 11:45:43 am »
As noted, it's off the TransAm, not the Northern Tier.

Search CGOB.  There are several journals mentioning it.  At least one has a number of neat photos of the ghost town.  Didn't see anything about food availability here:

http://bannack.org/

We will be in that area at the beginning of July.  Coming from Missoula through Wisdom.  After Jackson, we'll turn north on the Pioneer Mountains Scenic Byway.  Going to camp near Elkhorn Hot Springs and soak the bodies.  From there it's through Wise River to Divide to Melrose and then to Twin Bridges via a 20 mile unpaved road.  Plan to stay at Twin Bridges Cycle Camp.

Offline CMajernik

Re: Bannack State Park
« Reply #5 on: March 24, 2011, 12:07:38 pm »
Bannack is basically a ghost town. If you need services on a rest day I recommend staying in Dillon. The road is paved to reach it.
Carla Majernik
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Adventure Cycling Association
Inspiring people of all ages to travel by bicycle.
800/755-2453, 406/721-1776 x218, 406/721-8754 fax
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Offline John Nelson

Re: Bannack State Park
« Reply #6 on: March 24, 2011, 12:08:14 pm »
+1 on Twin Bridges Bike Camp. I stayed there last summer. There's free WiFi at the Laundromat. Restaurants in Twin Bridges are limited but sufficient. The mosquitoes were bad when I was there, but DEET made them a non-issue.

Offline indyfabz

Re: Bannack State Park
« Reply #7 on: March 24, 2011, 01:39:24 pm »
+1 on Twin Bridges Bike Camp. I stayed there last summer. There's free WiFi at the Laundromat. Restaurants in Twin Bridges are limited but sufficient. The mosquitoes were bad when I was there, but DEET made them a non-issue.

I hate mosquitoes so 100% DEET is how I roll.  I remember being in Wisdom many years ago.  I pulled up to the market in town during the late afternoon.  By the time I had gotten got off my bike and had gotten my wallet out of my pannier, they were all over me.  I was going to opt for a room, but the clerk told me there was a screened shelter at the park.  Pitched the tent inside and all was fine.

Only passed through Twin Bridges that year.  The Blue Anchor served a good breakfast.  The Cycle Camp has what they call an "insect resistant" shade shelter with tables.  Looks like the perfect place to cook dinner.

Offline John Nelson

Re: Bannack State Park
« Reply #8 on: March 24, 2011, 02:47:36 pm »
The screens on that screened shelter in Wisdom are in sad shape, so they're not much protection. I pitched my tent inside that shelter too. Worst mosquitoes I encountered were in Jeffrey City, but Wisdom was second place.

Offline staehpj1

Re: Bannack State Park
« Reply #9 on: March 24, 2011, 02:54:46 pm »
Worst mosquitoes I encountered were in Jeffrey City, but Wisdom was second place.
Just curious... What time of year was that.  They weren't a problem when we were there in 2007 (July 14th).

Offline John Nelson

Re: Bannack State Park
« Reply #10 on: March 24, 2011, 04:38:35 pm »
Worst mosquitoes I encountered were in Jeffrey City, but Wisdom was second place.
Just curious... What time of year was that.  They weren't a problem when we were there in 2007 (July 14th).
I slept in the Lion's Park there on June 20, 2010.

BTW, Bannack State Park, at four miles off route, was more of a detour than I would have considered.

Offline staehpj1

Re: Bannack State Park
« Reply #11 on: March 24, 2011, 06:09:36 pm »
I slept in the Lion's Park there on June 20, 2010.
Yeah we stayed there too.  Good times. 

Offline knolltop

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Re: Bannack State Park
« Reply #12 on: March 24, 2011, 06:32:13 pm »
As Indyfabz pointed out, found plenty of info re Bannack SP over on CGOAB.  While it is 4 mi offroute, it is downhill & mostly paved.   :)  And they seem to find room @ campground for us cyclists.  And looks like cool place for those interested in history of American West.

Yeah, I have Twin Bridges marked as "must do".

Pete, thanks for headsup re Patagonia outlet.  I'll see if I can assist with the economic recovery.

On the subject of moseys, northern MN has lots as big as hummingbirds!
+-+ Michael +-+

Offline indyfabz

Re: Bannack State Park
« Reply #13 on: March 24, 2011, 09:47:53 pm »
The screens on that screened shelter in Wisdom are in sad shape, so they're not much protection. I pitched my tent inside that shelter too. Worst mosquitoes I encountered were in Jeffrey City, but Wisdom was second place.

Ruh-roh.  Hope the girlfriend doesn't find out ahead of time.  Jeffrey City that same year ('00) as way too windy to feel any effects of bugs, at least during the day.  I could barely walk up the road.  I stayed in the JC Motel and got a very early start so I don't know what the morning and evening were like.  I spent the night of July 3rd there.

BTW...In case you had not heard, the Big Hole Crossings restaurant in Wisdom burned down a year or so ago.  However, last month it re-opened in a different location in town.

Offline BobG

Re: Bannack State Park
« Reply #14 on: March 26, 2011, 09:33:17 am »
I've stayed at Bannack State Park twice in the past with AC tour groups. The first was way back in 1983 and again in 1994. I remember a scenic, rustic campground in a grove of cottonwoods by the river. I recall easy dirt road access on road touring bikes at that time. Be warned, cottonwoods + river= mosquitoes!

A side trip and a single overnight was definitely worth the trouble to see the restored town. For a rest day I agree with valygrl and Carla, Dillon would be a better choice. We had to haul our supplies to Bannack from Dillon. The KOA in Dillon is excellent with lots of grass and close to the downtown amenities mentioned above.