"The best little Fly Shop on the Blackfoot River"

About Ovando

Blackfoot-Angler-Ovando, MT

The quaint shop that is The Blackfoot Angler & Supplies blends in well with the Old West attitude of Ovando, which was a bustling place in the late 1800's being the main distribution center and a station for the pending Blackfoot Railroad. In the late 1800's Ovando had a population of over 1,000 people and five saloons, two stores, two blacksmith shops, a drug store, hotel, barbershop and the US Forest Service Headquarters for the Blackfoot Forest, now known as the Lolo National Forest.

Meriweather Lewis was the first to visit the area of Ovando on his return trip from the Pacific Coast, minus William Clark, on July 6, 1806, when he camped near Ovando at the confluence of the Big Blackfoot River and a creek. Lewis named that creek Seaman's Creek after his dog. Today Seaman's Creek is called Monture Creek.

In 1883 the first post office was built and opened by Ovando Hoyt. Mail was brought to the town on snowshoes, horseback, four-horse teams, sleights, and wagons. One of the state's first telephone lines was established in the early 1900's from Ovando to Drummond by putting the wire on fence posts, trees and stakes. This was called the Blackfoot Telephone Co. which is now one of the largest telephone service providers in the state. Ovando's best-known landmark is Trixie's, a diner and bar named after the former trick rider, roper and showgirl who bought it in the 1950's. Its earlier owners had it in the heart of Ovando in 1897 and called it the "Bucket of Blood".

In December 1919, a fire broke out in one of the stores, quickly destroying much of the town. These buildings were never rebuilt, and with the Blackfoot Railroad never being completed to the town, population and businesses dwindled.

Today, the 100+ year old buildings that survived remain the cornerstone of Ovando’s main streets and Town Plaza, housing the Community Church, Blackfoot Mercantile an Inn, The Blackfoot Challenge, Stray Bullet Café, Blackfoot Angler and private residences. ...more history of the area

For additional information go to www.ovandomontana.net.