Happiest Hour 

The Wilderness Bar of Lincoln

Why you're here: Maybe because it's game day, the Griz just spanked Cal Poly, and on your way back over the divide, you stop the RV in Lincoln to gas up and throw one down.

Atmosphere: On a recent afternoon, one of the flat-screen TVs shows Billings little-leaguers playing South Dakota in the Little League World Series. A big inflatable football hangs from the ceiling. There are pool and poker tables and keno machines. The bathrooms are labeled "Bucks" and "Does." A fuzzily lettered sign above the bar says, "No sex causes bad eyes." Another sign says the bar reserves the right to refuse service to anyone: "We don't care how much money you have or who your daddy is."

click to enlarge PHOTO BY ALEX SAKARIASSEN

What you're drinking: Owner Ethel Peterson says Werthers—butterscotch schnapps with a touch of Crown Royal—and Jäger bombs are the most popular drinks. As for beer, "It used to be Bud Light, but Miller's right on its tail."

Happy Hour: Seventy-five cents off all drinks from 5 to 7 p.m. Monday to Thursday, and from 4:30 to 7 p.m. Friday. The "twilight" happy hour runs from 9 to 11 p.m.

Why you'll stop again: Because besides the bar, which includes the Scapegoat Eatery, the Wilderness Bar has a beer garden out back where it hosts live music, such as last weekend's Fiddlers Jamboree, plus miniature golf and horseshoes. There's live poker on Friday and Saturday nights. "We've always got something going on," Peterson says.

Happiest Hour celebrates western Montana watering holes. To recommend a bar, bartender or beverage for Happiest Hour, e-mail editor@missoulanews.com.

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