Sweeping views of the Mission and Swan mountain ranges at an elevation of nearly 7,500 feet aided the U.S. Forest Service in early fire detection. From 1957 through 1967, Mineral Peak was a primary lookout point. Lolo National Forest Service staff…

In the early days of the U.S. Forest Service, pack animals carried critical supplies and equipment to crews fighting forest fires. In 1929, a severe fire season exhausted the supply of trained mules and skilled packers. Forced to use unbroken…

Unlike most fire lookout houses, which are typically placed on towers, the West Fork Butte Lookout sits directly on a rocky knob. The fourteen-by-fourteen hipped-roof structure features ribbons of nine-light windows, a testament to the building’s…

Pack mules provided the only access to this site in 1932, when U.S. Forest Service personnel constructed the Double Arrow Lookout. Built following the L-4 plan designed by Clyde Fickes, the structure overlooks the Clearwater River drainage from atop…

Newspaper pressman Portus B. Thornton and his wife Victoria were the original owners of this Colonial Revival/Folk Victorian transitional cottage built circa 1905. Thornton came to Missoula from his native Canada in 1901 and married that same year.…

As Hellgate trading post grew into Missoula after 1860, farms sprouted north of the city center. The 1883 arrival of the Northern Pacific railroad brought residential construction to the Northside. The new neighborhood housed mainly railroad…