The Great Northern Route

Between Chinook and Malta, US-2 runs along the northern border of the Fort Belknap Indian Reservation, which covers some 650,000 acres stretching south to near the Missouri Breaks, a rock-and-sagebrush landscape that provided perfect hiding spots for outlaws like Kid Curry, Butch Cassidy, and the Hole-in-the-Wall Gang.

The Fort Belknap reservation was established in 1888 to contain the surviving members of the once-feared Gros Ventre and Assiniboine nations, who, before siding with the U.S. Army against the Blackfeet, were one of the major powers on the northern Plains. The tiny town of Fort Belknap, just south of US-2 about 25 miles east of Chinook, is the main reservation crossroads. The town hosts the annual Milk River Indian Days at the end of July, featuring athletic contests as well as dances and country-fair festivities.