Big Hole National Battlefield

Overview

Big Hole National Battlefield is a memorial to the people who fought and died here on August 9 and 10, 1877; combatants in a five month conflict that came to be called the Nez Perce War of 1877. In the summer, staff members conduct hands-on interpretive programs and demonstrations daily. The Battlefield offers two daily tours of the Battlefield. They are at 10:30 am and 1:30 pm from June 21st through mid August. Like other Indian Wars in the late 1800's, the Nez Perce War involved two very different groups with very different outlooks on land rights, civilian authority, government powers, social organization, and the responsibilities of the individuals to society. In 1992, legislation incorporated Big Hole National Battlefield with Nez Perce National Historical Park, making it part of a unique park consisting of 38 different sites located in five states; Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Montana, and Wyoming.

Map

Seasonality / Weather

The visitor center is open daily. Winter hours are from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. The Battlefield Visitor Center is closed on Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years Day.The Battlefield is open from sunrise to sunset daily. Access to the Battlefield during winter is by cross country ski or snowshoe.
Big Hole National Battlefield is located 6,300 feet above sea level. Visitors may need to slow their pace when walking. Drinking plenty of fluids is encouraged as summers and winters in the Big Hole Valley can be dry. Weather conditions can vary greatly at any time of year. Layered clothing is highly recommended.

Directions

Driving: 

Big Hole National Battlefield is located ten miles west of Wisdom, Montana on state Highway 43.

From I-15 at Dillon, Montana take Highway 278 northwest to Wisdom, then Highway 43, ten miles west.

From I-15 at Divide, take route 43 west through Wisdom to Battlefield.

From Missoula, Montana, take state route 93 south through the Bitterroot Valley to Lost Trail Pass. Turn east on highway 43 and drive 17 miles to the battlefield.