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Rillway Cabin


  • Southwest Montana
  • National Forest Cabin
Tucked back near a moss-covered canyon wall, with a charming creek splashing through the backyard, Rillway cabin has been a great addition to the Helena National Forest's cabin rental program. The cabin is accessible year-round by vehicle. It sleeps six people in three bunk beds and provides a good base for hiking, hunting, skiing and snowmobiling and offers the easiest access of any of the rental cabins on the Townsend Ranger District.

The cabin's history can be traced to Dr. A.C. Kelly, a physician who arrived in Townsend in 1915. The popular Kelly served as mayor of Townsend from 1920 through 1924, when he left the community. He practiced briefly at Bozeman before returning to Chicago, where he died in 1939. In 1918, Dr. Kelly obtained a term permit from the Forest Service for a cabin site on Deep Creek. It appears that the cabin was built sometime between 1918 and 1922, when Dr. Kelly sold it to Nellie Hale (Mrs. Truman N.) Averill and her son-in-law Floyd L. Hollaway. Family sources indicate that Mrs. Averill had purchased the cabin from its builder a year or two after construction, which would make the construction date 1920-21. By 1924 the cabin was known as 'Rillway', a combination of the Averill and Hollaway family names and an apt reference to its scenic setting on Deep Creek.

The Rillway Cabin has a fireplace insert, propane lanterns, propane cook stove, wood stove, table and chairs, three bunk beds with mattresses, silverware, dishes, cooking utensils, pots, pans, firewood, axe, shovel, bucket, outhouse and cleaning supplies. The cabin does NOT have electricity, running water or sewer.
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Alternate Phone
Mailing Address
Helena National Forest
415 South Front
Townsend, MT 59644


Special direction map

Special Directions

This cabin offers the easiest access to any of our cabins. It is located at the 14 mile marker on Highway 12. From the 4-way stop light in Townsend, turn east. Follow the road for 14 miles and watch for the Rillway Cabin sign along the right side of the highway at the 14-mile marker. There is also a sign that welcomes you to the National Forest. Please note, only right turns are allowed when you leave the cabin area. A short distance (about 1 mile) to the east is a pull out, use this to turn around if you must drive west. Please respect the private lands that are near the cabin site.