The Wahkpa Chu'gn Buffalo Jump

The Wahkpa Chu'gn Buffalo Jump (HM2MYW)

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N 48° 33.393', W 109° 42.288'

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Indian people have lived in this area for at least 11,000 years. Throughout that time, buffalo were their primary source of food. The Indians devised ingenious way to hunt buffalo with the buffalo jump, or pishkum, the best known. At pishkuns, hunters drove buffalo over steep bluffs or cliffs when the animals were either killed outright by the fall or badly crippled. The hunters sometimes constructed simple corral-like enclosures at the base of the bluffs to contain the crippled animals until they could be killed using either the atlatl or bow and arrow.

A series of buffalo jumps were once located along the steep bluffs overlooking the Milk River west of Havre. The Great Northern Railway destroyed three of them when it constructed its line through here in 1887. Today only the Wahkpa Chu'gn (pronounced walk-paw-chew-gun) buffalo jump remains. It is located just west of here behind the Holiday Village Shopping Center. For over 2,500 years, Indian peoples used Wahkpa Chu'gn as a pishkun, It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. You can visit the site and view extensive displays about the buffalo jump and the materials discovered by the archaeologists.
Placed ByMontana Department of Transportation
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Thursday, November 14th, 2019 at 1:01pm PST -08:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)12U E 595571 N 5378971
Decimal Degrees48.55655000, -109.70480000
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 48° 33.393', W 109° 42.288'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds48° 33' 23.58" N, 109° 42' 17.28" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Which side of the road?Marker is on the right when traveling West
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