Downtown Kalispell Walking Tour:
The Iron Horse Snorted in the Garden of Eden
Years in the planning, the Northwest Montana History Museum launches its long-awaited walking tour in early June. Our Downtown Kalispell Walking Tour: The Iron Horse Snorted in the Garden of Eden runs weekly at 10 a.m. Mondays from June 5 to Sept. 25. Private tours also are available.
The well-researched, high-quality walking tour shows how Kalispell evolved into the cultural, economic, and transportation hub of Northwest Montana’s unique Flathead Valley. The approximate two-hour, level, and ADA-accessible tour covers about one mile and makes more than two dozen stops amid 30-plus highlighted buildings that tell the story of Kalispell’s history and people.
Along the way walkers learn about architectural styles and modern reuse as well as prominent citizens and early settlers, how a bison herd could buy a city block, and where to spot ghost signs.
All walks begin and end at the Northwest Montana History Museum, 124 Second Ave. East, Kalispell, MT 59901.
Recommended for ages 10+
Museum admission is included with a ticket to the walking tour.
We look forward to walking with you!
Please stay tuned for ticket and walk policies. Online ticket sales end a half-hour before the walk begins. Tickets also are available at the museum or by calling 406-756-8381, option 5.
A signed waiver is required to participate in the tour, provided on-site. It is also available online to download, print, read, and sign in advance.
This program is sponsored in part by the Foundation for Montana History and researched and organized by staff and volunteers of the Northwest Montana History Museum. Proceeds benefit the Northwest Montana History Museum and its preservation and presentation of regional history.
Downtown Kalispell Walking Tour FAQ and Policies
We highly recommend reserving your spot in advance either in advance online or contacting the museum. Capacity is limited.
You may reserve a spot on a tour in advance online or through the museum by stopping in 10 to 5 weekdays or calling 406-756-8381.
Please arrive 10 to 15 minutes before the start time of the tour regardless of whether you have reservations. This allows our guides to check in participants and begin on time. If a walk attendee arrives late, the guide will not be expected to restart the tour or return to previous stops.
We recommend bringing water. Please dress appropriately for the weather, including layers, sunglasses, and sunscreen as the tour mainly takes place outdoors.
While tips are never expected, if you enjoyed your experience, please consider showing your guide with gratuity. Any amount is appreciated.
Yes, children of all ages are welcome on the walking tour. Kids under 14 must be accompanied by an adult.
The Northwest Montana History Museum will not allow anyone on the tours without a signed waiver. The waiver is available online for participants to download, print, read, and sign in advance.
Any tour participant’s spot must be reserved by the time the tour is set to begin. Online reservations close a half-hour before the start of the walking tour or if walk capacity has been reached. Guides are not permitted to accept cash as a valid form of payment for a tour booking.
Cancellations made at least 48 hours before the scheduled start time will receive a refund. Cancellations made within 48 hours of the walk start time will not be granted a refund. Cancellations for “extenuating circumstances” are handled on a case-by-case basis; please contact the museum 406-756-8381 if you have an extenuating circumstance cancellation. Special events or private tours may require additional cancellation time. Private tour fees are nonrefundable.
- If rain, snow, or extreme wind is in the forecast or evident near a tour’s start time, the tour guide will ask the group if anyone is willing to go. If some or all say yes, the tour will proceed at the guide’s discretion.
- If thunder is heard 10 minutes before a tour is set to begin, the tour will be canceled. If thunder is heard at any point during the tour, the guide has the right to end the tour. Refunds will be issued.
- If the temperature exceeds 100 degrees, the tour will be at the guide and walk participants’ discretion.
- If a participant decides to opt out of a tour before it is set to begin for any weather-related concerns, they will have the choice of either a refund or the opportunity to reschedule their tour to another date.
Walk attendees agree to comply with all the Northwest Montana History Museum rules, including those given verbally and in writing, and to participate in presentations of any safety material, such as reviews on walking safety, which may be designed and offered to promote safety in Northwest Montana History Museum activities and adventures. Participants agree to follow all other written and verbal trip safety rules presented to me by the Northwest Montana History Museum.
We advise bringing a water bottle and wearing appropriate footwear and attire while participating in the walking tour. It is the attendees’ responsibility to ensure that these are in working order. Please bring any other necessary equipment such as inhalers, walking sticks, umbrellas, raincoats, backpacks, etc.
The Northwest Montana History Museum reserves the right to make route and trip modifications as necessary or advisable to improve the trip quality and/or accommodate the comfort and well-being or safety of participants and the provider.
Northwest Montana History Museum reserves the right to decline to accept or retain any tour participant whose health or actions in Northwest Montana History Museum activities in its sole judgment impedes the operation of a trip or the welfare, safety, or enjoyment of the participants or provider.
Participants understand the nature of a walking tour and represent that they are qualified to participate in such activity. Participants further acknowledge and accept that it is their responsibility to consult with their personal physicians about their physical health, fitness, and ability to participate in the walking tour and will do so before participating in the tour.
Participants acknowledge that as a participant in the Northwest Montana History Museum walking tour, they have been advised to obtain medical, travel, and trip cancellation insurance.
Participants consent, authorize and grant the Northwest Montana History Museum all necessary authority, right, license, and permission to use photographs, audio, and/or video recordings, or other forms of recordings that capture my image, likeness, and/or voice (or all of these) that are associated with my tour (collectively hereinafter referred to as “Images”), in which participants may be included in whole or in part, in any manner or media, including print, broadcast, Internet media, direct marketing channels, downloadable content and applications, and all other technologies now known or hereafter developed. The images may be used or exploited for any commercial or noncommercial purpose whatsoever and may be altered, modified, changed, combined, or incorporated into other works. Participants hereby relinquish any rights that they may have in the Images (including privacy, personality, and publicity rights). No fees or other compensation whatsoever will be provided to participants for or in connection with the use of the Images. Participants release Northwest Montana History Museum and its respective licensees, assigns, representatives, and agents from any and all claims that participants may now or in the future have relating to the ownership, reproductions, display, distribution, or other use of the Images.
For the safety and comfort of our guides and other participants and due to the historical significance of our sites, pets are not allowed on tours. Service dogs as approved by the Americans with Disabilities Act are permitted; however, emotional support, comfort, or companion pets are not allowed.
For the safety and comfort of our guides and other participants, we do not permit smoking (including e-cigarettes) on tours. The Northwest Montana History Museum reserves the right to request that an attendee leave a tour if he or she is smoking.
We encourage tour participants to take souvenir photos but request they do not film tours. Please be aware of your surroundings when walking and stopping to listen on each tour. If you choose to take pictures, do not walk backward to get something in the shot as it may cause you to fall or bump into another others.
Please put cell phones on silent while on a tour so as not to interrupt the guide. We ask that participants who may need to take an urgent call to please be courteous to the guide and other attendees and step away from the group to have a quiet, private phone conversation.