We will be getting on/off our motorcoach numerous times each day. Some of the stops are quick hops off for photo opportunities, and sometimes to better see and explain what has been discussed in onboard commentary. There will be hikes up to one mile almost daily during the motorcoach portion of the program. While on the American Empress, some land transportation will be provided via Hop On/Hop Off buses operated by the ship.
At the hotel.
Setting out from the hotel via motorcoach with our study leader, we will explore several locations important to the Lewis and Clark Expedition, including Decision Point Park, Fort Benton and Ryan Dam. We'll then head to the C.M. Russell Museum where the Old West lives on-- in one of the United States' finest museums of American Western art. It is also home of the most complete collection of Charles Marion Russell's artwork and memorabilia in the world. Also known as the "Cowboy Artist", Russell's artwork is part entertainment, part history lesson. In a fascinating presentation, learn about the life of this cowboy, outdoorsman, writer, philosopher, environmentalist, conservationist, artist, and passionate Plains Indians advocate. Following the presentation you'll be free to explore the museum on your own.
At the C.M. Russell Museum.
After lunch we'll visit the Portage Overlook and then follow the infamous Portage Route, where the Corps of Discovery experienced a grueling, month-long trial to determine the best route around the falls, which became a serious underestimation on their part. After the tour we'll depart for the hotel.
At the hotel.
Tonight we will begin our lecture series on Meriwether Lewis and William Clark. Also known as the Corps of Discovery, the Lewis and Clark Expedition departed the western border of the United States – what was then the Mississippi River – in May 1804 for the Pacific Northwest, reaching the Pacific Ocean in November 1805. Throughout the journey, they established relations with more than two dozen groups of Native Americans, mapped their route, and noted species of plants and animals new to science.