The Medicine Rocks are a series of natural rock formations considered sacred by local Native American tribes. They are covered in Native Rock Art or Pictographs.
A scenic drive on Montana Highway 7 through rolling hills and prairie, visitors will be amazed by the incredible beauty of Medicine Rocks State Park. As you approach the park you’ll see sandstone pillars, caves archways and towers rising out of the plains with small batches of pine forest in some areas.
But how did these formations come to be?
Around 60-million years ago, the Great Plains were covered by an immense sea. The edges of this sea were swamp-like and forested with a shallow river that cut through carrying sediment from the forming Rocky Mountains. Portions of this sediment were deposited along the path of the river creating sandbars.
Over the years, these sandbars turned to sandstone where wind, water and temperature extremes took their toll. The stronger materials stayed while the less resistant material was eroded away. The rock that was able to withstand millions of years of erosion now makes up the odd formations found at Medicine Rocks State Park.
Things to do:
✅ Hike through the prairie and forest or even climb into caves!
✅ Take incredible pictures of the rock formations!
✅ Enjoy a picnic and enjoy the ever-changing landscape!
✅ Keep your eyes open for wildlife including mule deer, antelope, Woodhouse’s toads and sharp-tailed grouse!
✅ Camp at one of the 12 rustic campsites!
✅ Stargaze on a clear night or plan a visit during a meteor shower!
✅ Plus so many more!
Once you’re in the park, a road twists and turns through rock outcroppings taking visitors to the camping and picnic areas. Many of the formations can be viewed from your vehicle, but exploring the park by foot allows visitors to get up close and personal with these rock formations.
Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, Medicine Rocks is also an important cultural site for Native Americans, once used as a vision quest location, meeting place and lookout for bison or enemies.
Did you know?
Many early settlers and cattle drivers carved their names or initials along with the dates they visited into the rocks. You can still find many of these and a complete list of these names can be found in the nearby Carter County Museum!
Those looking to enjoy the park overnight will find 12 campsites nestled among the Swiss cheese-like rock formations. But be sure to arrive early as all of these sites are first-come, first served.
Did you know?
Theodore Roosevelt visited the area in 1883 and called it “as fantastically beautiful a place as I have ever seen.”
1141 Hwy 7
7 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Water Available Year-Round