Deer Lodge is nestled in the beautiful Deer Lodge Valley and has three mountain ranges towering nearby: the Flint Creek Mountain Range to the west, the Garnet Mountain Range to the north, and the Pintler Mountain Range to the south.
The Clark Fork River traverses the valley, as do many lakes and streams in the area. The valley was once called "Lodge of the White-Tailed Deer" by Native Americans, but Deer Lodge actually got its name from a salt lick popular with deer during the frontier days. Deer Lodge is an early mining town from the 1860s, that didn’t die but turned to other pursuits.
Today, at the heart of this town is a huge array of history as well as recreation. Some attractions of this town are the Grant Kohrs Ranch, the Old Montana Prison, Yesterday’s Playthings, Montana Auto Museum, Little Joe Engine, and the Powell County History Museum and Gallery. The prison, which predates the statehood of Montana, was opened in 1871.