Captain Clark and his return party passed through here in 1806 and stopped at the local hot springs. Not content with just a soak, the Corps of Discovery also cooked their dinner in the 138°F water. Now, as then, this little community is known mostly for the springs.
The Jackson Hot Springs Lodge, off Highway 278 (406/834-3151 or 888/438-6938, www.jacksonhotsprings.com/jackacc.htm , $33–85) operates a Western-style resort at the spot where Lewis and Clark dined. The lodge is right on Jackson’s main drag and dominates the town. Even if you don’t stay the night, stop for a swim ($5) or a drink at the bar. Open year-round, the lodge caters to summer anglers and tourists but really gears up for winter guests.
Nearby are excellent cross-country trails, some groomed and others informal; snowmobilers also use the lodge as a center. Standard accommodations at the resort are in cabin-like motel rooms; rates for these begin at $85 per night. However, there are some tiny cabins with a shared bath that run $33 per night; if you want to stay in one of the budget cabins, you’ll have to speak up. A few lodge rooms ($55) are also available, as are sites for tents ($10) and RVs ($25). Good food (three meals a day), drink, and entertainment are provided at the lodge.
A couple of Forest Service campgrounds (406/689-3243, www.fs.fed.us/r1/b-d , early July–Labor Day, $7) are west of Jackson. Miner Lake is about 10 miles west of town via Forest Service Road 182, which heads off toward the Bitterroots right at the south end of town. The campground is not well-marked; look off to your left when you’re 10 miles out of town and you’ll find at least one of the many de facto campsites in the area.
To reach the Twin Lakes campground, take Road 1290 west from Highway 278 about halfway between Jackson and Wisdom  and travel for about 13 miles. Both campgrounds are pretty places perched on the east slopes of the Bitterroots. The lakes are great canoe spots, but motorboats are not allowed.