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“Living the Trail”

Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center
Ranked #1 of 34 things to do in Great Falls
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Located on a bluff overlooking the Missouri River in Giant Springs Heritage State Park, this visitors center provides information and exhibits about Lewis and Clark's famous journey and the historical significance of the United States' westward expansion.
Stevens Point, Wisconsin
Level 2 Contributor
8 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Living the Trail”
Reviewed September 12, 2011

We have traveled pieces of the Lewis and Clark Trail from St Louis to Fort Clatsop, and have found this facility is one of the best ones on the trail. Exhibits are well-done. Interpretation is outstanding. Programs are well-planned and presented. In the interest of full disclosure, we are members of the "Friends" group supporting the Center, but would not have offered our support if we did not believe the site worth the support.

Visited June 2011
Helpful?
Thank Parkjunkie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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608 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Alamogordo, New Mexico
Level 6 Contributor
475 reviews
257 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 314 helpful votes
“Excellent - a great presentation of an historic event”
Reviewed September 1, 2011

We visited this during a trip to Montana, along with several other museums in Montana. I thought it was the most interesting one. It takes you through the entire expedition, every step of the way, and covers all of the amazing things that they did and that happened to them. Lewis and Clark must have been truly inspiring leaders to get the efforts required from the men to overcome the many obstacles. I would highly recommend this to any history buff or anyone interested in learning more about our country's history. There is also a good film included.

Visited August 2011
Helpful?
Thank ChuckBrooks
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Arlee, Montana
Level 5 Contributor
52 reviews
13 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“Very informative but lacking a specific Indian perspective”
Reviewed August 29, 2011

My kids loved the hands-on aspect of the center and we enjoyed walking through the center. The interactive nature of many exhibits was engaging, and you can even try on clothing similar to that worn by people in the Corps of Discovery. The information regarding tribal encounters was thorough; however, the lack of a narrative told by any of the tribes themselves was troubling. There was no tribal perspective. There was one footnote placard about how tribes are finding their way in today's society, etc., but nothing tribally specific. I guess if you just want to learn about Lewis and Clark and don't care about the tribes themselves, this is not a problem. The gift shop had some neat stuff, some good books, and some questionable books (from tribal perspective, again).

Visited August 2011
Helpful?
Thank AnnaBaldwin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Scottsdale, Arizona
Level 6 Contributor
402 reviews
207 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 213 helpful votes
“Marvelous Interpretive Center”
Reviewed August 27, 2011

We were delighted with this Center. It has great videos and an extremely well designed and informative series of linked displays, tracking the entire journey of Lewis and Clark. The displays focused, not surprisingly on their passage through what is now Montana. I have read "Undaunted Courage" by Stephen Ambrose and traveled other parts of this journey but found it helpful to begin to comprehend the difficulty of their portage around the great falls of the Missouri. They had to haul heavily laden pirogues up the steep banks of the Missouri and then pull them over 18 rugged miles before resuming their journey. Difficulties followed when they reached the headwaters of the Misssouri and they had to choose one of the three rivers flowing into the Missouri. Visiting Three Forts State Park it was apparent why they followed the Jefferson River,named so aptly by them. I particularly appreciated the depth of information about the Indian Tribes who helped them succeed. Without the hlep of many tribes, this journey wouls have ended in failure. Do not miss this Center!

Visited August 2011
Helpful?
Thank jnichols
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Laguna Hills, California
Level 4 Contributor
25 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
“Almost didn't stop - so glad we did!!”
Reviewed August 25, 2011

Kind of thought is would be boring but it was very interesting and informative. It has a great theatre with short movies throughout the day. The exhibits are awesome - many are interactive. Not to mention the great views of the Missouri River. Wish we had more time.
If you have a Senior in your group, with a National Parks pass, it's no charge for up to 4 people. The Rangers at the center are friendly, helpful and knowledgeable.

Visited August 2011
Helpful?
1 Thank BarbaraHB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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