Near Loma in Chouteau County, Montana — The American West (Mountains)
Information provided by the Mandans had been reliable to this point. But finding the Marias Ever was a surprise. The correct decision would lead the expedition to the best route across the Rocky Mountains. A wrong decision could strand them unprepared for a potentially deadly winter.
Lewis led a small party up the Marias; Clark, the Missouri. The Missouri was clear with a rocky bed, characteristics of rivers that have recently emerged from the mountains. The Marias was swollen and muddy from spring runoff. They chose the Missouri. The captains' judgement was rewarded the next day, when the falls were discovered.
"...to mistake the stream at this period of the season...would probably so dishearten the party that in might defeat the expedition altogether." -- Meriwether Lewis, June 3, 1805
Erected by Bureau of Land
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Exploration. In addition, it is included in the Lewis & Clark Expedition series list.
Location. 47° 55.509′ N, 110° 29.908′ W. Marker is near Loma, Montana, in Chouteau County. Marker is on Loma Ferry Road near Curlew Trail, on the left when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Loma MT 59460, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 4 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Lewis and Clark National Historic Trail (within shouting distance of this marker); Ophir (about 500 feet away, measured in a direct line); Fort Piegan (about 700 feet away); a different marker also named Decision Point (about 800 feet away); The Manitoba Railroad (approx. ¾ mile away); Marias River (approx. ¾ mile away); Victims of Blood Indians Massacre (approx. ¾ mile away); A Montana Crossroads (approx. 3.3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Loma.
Also see . . . Decision Point in the Lewis and Clark Expedition -- HistoryNet. An unexpected fork in the Missouri River presented a monumental challenge to the leadership of Lewis and Clark. (Submitted on December 5, 2020, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California.)
Credits. This page was last revised on December 5, 2020. It was originally submitted on December 5, 2020, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California. This page has been viewed 27 times since then and 3 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on December 5, 2020, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California.