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Vigilante Trail

The Vigilante Trail, originally dedicated in 1924, provides a corridor for Montana tourists from Butte to West Yellowstone. The trail was marked with the vigilante code, 3-7-77, on bright signs to ensure that visitors would not lose their way. This code served as a warning for frontier ruffians and criminals to leave the area immediately – or else. The trail cuts through the heart of Southwest Montana, taking travelers along the road that was frequented by so many of the early Montana settlers. Rich in territorial history, outdoor recreational opportunities, and genuine Montana hospitality, a trip along the Vigilante Trail will provide a memorable experience for all visitors.

An old building found while traveling along the Vigilante Trail

As you travel along the Vigilante Trail, you will find genuine Montana hospitality with every stop. Each of the communities along the trail – Butte, Whitehall, Silver Star, Twin Bridges, Sheridan, Alder, Nevada City, Virginia City, Ennis, Cameron, and West Yellowstone – is unique and offers its own Montana flare.

Things To Do

There are a variety of things to do along the Vigilante Trail. Below are some of the activities available at the Virginia City stop.

Free Activities

The Bovey Visitor Center

Picture in the Bovey Visitor Center in Nevada City, MT.

The Charles A. & Sue Ford Bovey Visitor Center is a tribute to Charles and Sue Ford Bovey located in Nevada City. The Bovey's loved history and in 1944 visited Virginia City and recognized its historic value. They joined others from the Historic Landmark Society of Montana. The Bovey's spent much of their own money to purchase the buildings, property, and even moved several buildings alongside the twelve existing in Nevada City in order to save them from destruction. They are recognized as pioneers in the field of historic preservation.  There is no charge to visit this building when open during summer operating hours.

Self Guided Walking Tours

The towns are considered “open air museums”, that is most of our collections can be viewed outdoors. There are also plaques on the buildings with historical significance. You can peek in the building’s windows for a look into life as it was in the late 1800s.

More information can be found at virginiacitymt.com

Outline of Vigilante Trail across Montana from Glacier Park to Yellowstone Park

Vigilante Pass

For a family or group of 5: $125 (good for 2 days)

Available for purchase from the Virginia City Depot or Nevada City Museum

Pass for Two

Price: $49

  • Unlimited rides on the train
  • Gold panning at River of Gold
  • Entrance to the Nevada City History Museum

Family Season Pass

For a family up to 5: $149

  • Unlimited rides on the train
  • Gold panning at River of Gold
  • Entrance to the Nevada City History Museum
  • Unlimited use between Memorial Weekend & Labor Day
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