The Rocky Mountain Front looms over ancient grasslands
and a reclaimed building with new purpose
he old Augusta Depot lingers like a ghost on the prairie,
displaced and lonesome. It’s been a long time since the
rumble of a locomotive and the pierce of its whistle hung in the
still air of the plains here. Travelers don’t stand on the deck of
the building to scan the open horizon for a coming train. No
longer do the tracks reach this end-of-the-line depot to trans-
port livestock or passengers into Great Falls and beyond. The
train stopped running to this Montana cow town in 1976.
But for Erec Lindberg, the depot offers a ringside seat to
the eastern Rocky Mountain Front and a means to return to his
Montana roots. He bought the forgotten building in 2001 and
has transformed it into a private home.
Big Sky Journal HOME
“The property was this barren mess,” he says while sitting
in the shade of the porch. “It had a sink and a refrigerator and
holes in the walls. It was dark and totally beat up.”
The property came to him almost by accident one winter
day several years ago while he was visiting a friend here. A
native of nearby Simms, Lindberg had left Montana for New
York City nearly 20 years ago and had no intention of living in
this remote country again. Yet something about the dilapidated
building pulled him to this place, despite the graying clapboard
siding, peeling paint and desolate location. A gut feeling told
him to put in an offer on the land and Lindberg trusted that.
“It was as if this place was mine from the beginning,” he
says looking out toward the view that surrounds his home.
Nestled in a crook of hillside, the sand-colored paint blends into
the surrounding landscape and the building is now oriented
to overlook the round pen where Lindberg occasionally works
Opposite: The abandoned railroad depot was moved to this prairie site from the
tiny cowtown of Augusta in the 1990’s.
Above: Creating eclectic ambiance in the historic building, the owner com-
bined modern art and C