On August 9, 1877 gun shots shattered a chilly dawn on a sleeping camp of Nez Perce. By the time the smoke cleared on August 10, almost 90 Nez Perce were dead along with 31 soldiers and volunteers. Big Hole National Battlefield was created to honor all who were there.
National Recreation Area
Fort Smith, MT,WY
The vast, wild landscape of Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area offers visitors unparalleled opportunities to immerse themselves in the natural world, and experience the wonders of this extraordinary place. With over 120,000 acres, one can find an astounding diversity in ecosystems, wildlife, and more than 10,000 years of human history to explore.
National Historic Site
Fort Union Trading Post
Two States: MT,ND
Between 1828 and 1867, Fort Union was the most important fur trade post on the Upper Missouri River. Here, the Assiniboine and six other Northern Plains Tribes exchanged buffalo robes and smaller furs for goods from around the world, including cloth, guns, blankets, and beads. A bastion of peaceful coexistence, the post annually traded over 25,000 buffalo robes and $100,000 in merchandise.
Northwest Montana, MT
A showcase of melting glaciers, alpine meadows, carved valleys, and spectacular lakes. With over 700 miles of trails, Glacier is a paradise for adventurous visitors seeking wilderness steeped in human history. Relive the days of old through historic chalets, lodges, and the famous Going-to-the-Sun Road.
National Historic Site
Deer Lodge, MT
Wide open spaces, the hard-working cowboy, his spirited cow pony, and vast herds of cattle are among the strongest symbols of the American West. Once the headquarters of a 10 million acre cattle empire, Grant-Kohrs Ranch National Historic Site preserves these symbols and commemorates the role of cattlemen in American history.
National Geologic Trail
Ice Age Floods
At the end of the last Ice Age, 18,000 to 15,000 years ago, an ice dam in northern Idaho created Glacial Lake Missoula stretching 3,000 square miles around Missoula, Montana. The dam burst and released flood waters across Washington, down the Columbia River into Oregon before reaching the Pacific Ocean. The Ice Age Floods forever changed the lives and landscape of the Pacific Northwest.
National Historic Trail
Lewis & Clark
Sixteen States: IA,ID,IL,IN,KS,KY,MO,MT,NE,ND,OH,OR,PA,SD,WA,WV
The Lewis and Clark National Historic Trail winds nearly 4,900 miles through the homelands of more than 60 Tribal nations. It follows the historic outbound and inbound routes of the Lewis and Clark Expedition of 1803-1806 from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to the Pacific Ocean. Follow the trail to find the people, places, and stories that make up the complex legacy of the expedition.
Little Bighorn Battlefield
Crow Agency, MT
This area memorializes the US Army's 7th Cavalry, Crow, and Arikara scouts and the Lakotas, Cheyennes, and Arapaho in one of the American Indian's last armed efforts to preserve their way of life. Here on June 25 and 26 of 1876, 263 soldiers, including Lt. Col. George A. Custer and attached personnel of the US Army, died fighting several thousand Lakota, Cheyenne, and Arapaho warriors.
National Historical Park
four states ID,MT,OR,WA
Since time immemorial, the valleys, prairies, mountains, and plateaus of the inland northwest have been home to the nimíipuu (Nez Perce) people. Extremely resilient, they survived the settling of the United States and adapted to a changed world. Nez Perce National Historical Park consists of 38 places important to the history and culture of the nimíipuu. Explore these places. Learn their stories.
Yellowstone National Park, ID,MT,WY
On March 1, 1872, Yellowstone became the first national park for all to enjoy the unique hydrothermal and geologic features. Within Yellowstone's 2.2 million acres, visitors have unparalleled opportunities to observe wildlife in an intact ecosystem, explore geothermal areas that contain about half the world’s active geysers, and view geologic wonders like the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone River.
By The Numbers
- 8 National Parks
- 5,048,627 Visitors to National Parks
- $618,900,000 Economic Benefit from National Park Tourism »
- $45,294,430 of Land & Water Conservation Fund Appropriated for Projects (since 1965) »
- 17 Certified Local Governments »
- 55 Community Conservation & Recreation Projects (since 1987) »
- 1 Wild & Scenic Rivers Managed by NPS »
- 1 National Trails Administered by NPS »
- 1,252 National Register of Historic Places Listings »
- 28 National Historic Landmarks »
- 10 National Natural Landmarks »
- 2 World Heritage Sites »
- 561 Places Recorded by Heritage Documentation Programs »
- 1,594,971 Objects in National Park Museum Collections »
- 1,146 Archeological Sites in National Parks »
- 2 Teaching with Historic Places Lesson Plans »
- 8 Discover Our Shared Heritage Travel Itineraries »
- Print the summary »
These numbers are just a sample of the National Park Service's work. Figures are for the fiscal year that ended 9/30/2020.