Twin Bridges, Montana, located on the banks of the Beaverhead River, has a population of about 400 people. The town is a hub for the neighboring ranches and attracts businesses serving fly fishers and hunters. The town’s largest business is the world famous R.L. Winston Rod Company which employs 50 persons.
On the west bank of the Beaverhead is the Madison County Fairgrounds with a rodeo arena, event facilities, livestock barns, and camping area. Directly across the highway is Jessen Park, and the Bill White Bike Camp for touring cyclists.
Visitors to Twin Bridges enjoy the scenic beauty, the avid community spirit, friendly folks, interesting history, and fly-fishing. Twin Bridges Public Library offers free internet access on computers in the library and free wireless access. Tourist services include maps, fax /copy machines, brief histories of the Montana State Children’s Center, Flour Mill, and Doncaster Horse Racing Barn, and more.
Just up the street is the Twin Bridges Historical Association, a museum of local history and natural artifacts, including geological exhibits, antique mining tools, photos of the Montana State Children’s Center, military histories, and Lewis & Clark expedition. Staff at the library and the museum are happy to assist visitors with current and historical information.
Schools, Churches, Medical
Public Schools from pre-k through grade 12 serve about 240 students, and the Twin Bridges Falcons are a formidable force to be reckoned with in Class C circles. Visit their webpage here. There are a variety of churches, a dental office, and a medical clinic. Twin Bridges has its own small airport, and is 30 mi. north of Dillon, and 30 miles south of Whitehall. Check our Business Directory for a full rundown of available businesses and services.
Twin Bridges has Three Public Parks:
- City Park is located in the center of town between the fire hall and the Old Hotel. Don’t miss the branding fence on the east side of the park
- Jessen Park is located across the Beaverhead River Bridge on Highway 41. The town’s original, stonewall jail is located near the river. During the winter months, the town provides an outdoor ice skating area at the park. In January or February (depending on the temperature), the Rotary Club sponsors a Christmas tree bonfire and potluck near the skating rink. Jessen Park is also a popular fishing access and swimming hole.
- Riverside Park is located on the west side of the Madison County Fairgrounds and is used for many community youth sports functions (Little League, t-ball, etc.). The gazebo and clubhouse are also available for community gatherings and events.
Why is the town called “Twin Bridges”?
Twin Bridges was named for two bridges built by the Lott Brothers. The first bridge was built over the Beaverhead River on the west side of the town. The second bridge was built on the High Road over the Big Hole River. Both bridges served to connect the towns of Twin Bridges and the mining town of Rochester, located in the hills to the west. For more historical trivia on Twin Bridges, visit Southwest Montana.
Claims to Fame
- Benny Reynolds, 1961 World Champion All-Around rodeo cowboy and 1993 inductee into the ProRodeo Hall of Fame, ranched near Twin Bridges until his death in 2014. For a hilarious look at his appearance on “Name that Tune” in 1958, watch this 28 min. archived video.
- Angela McLean, 2012 – 2015 Lieutenant Governor of Montana, is a graduate of Twin Bridges High School.
- Spokane, the winner of the 1899 Kentucky Derby, was born in the “Round Barn”, or “Doncaster Barn”, at Twin Bridges, located about two miles north of town. In 2015/16 the famous barn is undergoing restoration and remodeling making it suitable for hosting events. Once described as a “swank hotel for horses,” the Round Barn is on the National Register of Historic Places.
- Sacajawea of Lewis and Clark fame, spent her early childhood summers with her Shoshone people in the valleys of the Beaverhead River. In fact, that’s where the name “Beaverhead” originated. The first landmark Sacajawea recognized as the expedition entered the area between Twin Bridges and Dillon, was the large point of rocks about 10 miles south of Twin on Hwy 41. She excitedly told them it was the “Beaver’s Head”.
Founded in 1866, Silver Star is the third oldest town in Montana. With only 30 residents, Silver Star supports a local post office and Granny’s Country Store. Stop and stretch your legs. Mail a post card, visit the local gift shop, and view the collection of very large, antique mining equipment on the west side of the highway. Located adjacent to the Jefferson River, the town is popular with fly fishers. Just outside of town is a great fishing access site. Most students attend Twin Bridges schools, and some attend schools in Whitehall. Silver Star is located along the Lewis & Clark National Historical Trail.