Wilderness Treatment Center in Marion, MT

Call (406) 854-2832 to Contact Wilderness Treatment Center

Overall Rating

(4 of 5)
Treatment Effectiveness
Accommodations & Amenities
Meals & Nutrition
200 Hubbart Dam Road
Marion MT 59925

Wilderness Treatment Center Philosophy

Wilderness Treatment Center offers residential addiction treatment for teen and adolescent males between the ages of 14 and 24. Treatment includes experiential adventure therapy, 12-Step services, family programming, individualized planning, medical supervision, and more. Clients are provided the opportunity to earn high school credits while participating in treatment. Courses provided include physical education, english, social studies, and psychology.

Areas of Specialization

  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
    The focus of cognitive behavioral therapy (also called CBT) is helping people to understand the thoughts and emotions that underlie their addiction with the goal of learning new, healthier and more productive ways to understand and express themselves.

  • 12-Step
    The term “12 Step Program” describes a way to recover from addiction that is based on the model developed by Alcoholics Anonymous. Many drug and alcohol treatment centers base their treatment on 12 steps – the first three of which are situational, the next four addressing the practical issues created by the addiction, followed by two steps focused on making amends for hurting others. Steps 10 and 11 involve a deeper examination of the previous steps and the final step is focused on helping others avoid and recover from addiction.

Facility Highlights

Adolescent Treatment

Individual Treatment

Ranch Environment

Meet the Staff

Ben Dorrington

Director of Admissions, Counselor, L.A.C.

Photo of Ben Dorrington

Ben is a Licensed Addictions Counselor and a native of the Flathead Valley. He has a degree in Psychology from Linfield College and has been working at Wilderness Treatment Center since 2003. Ben is an avid golfer, fisherman and softball enthusiast.

Chase Sewell

Business Development Manager

Photo of Chase Sewell

Since beginning his journey in recovery, Chase has worked with many programs helping adolescents and young adults achieve sobriety. He has spent his career in several recovery residences, an intensive outpatient program as a group therapist, and working with a drug screening company doing field work with clients.

Rehabs.com 360 Guide

Review by Rehabs.com Contributors

ABOUT WILDERNESS TREATMENT CENTER

Nestled along the western slopes of the Rocky Mountains in Marion, Mont. on a 5,900-acre working cattle ranch, the Wilderness Treatment Center (WTC) is a residential substance rehab for teens and young men ages 14 to 24. The program combines a conventional 30-day rehab stay with a 16 to 21-day therapeutic wilderness excursion. Co-occurring disorders are also addressed, but there are no detox services on-site. Clients must be medically cleared prior to beginning treatment.

TREATMENT & ASSESSMENT

Wilderness Treatment Center is a part of the 35% of facilities in the country that is family-owned and operated. The treatment methods are based on the 12-Steps. During the first 30 days, clients live on the ranch and participate in therapeutic interventions such as group therapy, individual counseling, psychoeducational lectures, and 12-Step meetings both on and off-site.

In addition to traditional methods, clients also participate in activities such as hiking, equine-assisted therapy, rock climbing, and ropes courses. All residents are assigned chores, with tasks ranging from tending the land and feeding animals, to woodworking and helping in the kitchen.

After the first month, clients head-out into the mountains for a 21-day wilderness retreat, escorted by one of the addiction counselors and a wilderness instructor. There they are faced with the challenges of living without personal comforts and are taught how to camp and make their own food. Clients continue to participate in group and individual therapy while camping. When the three weeks are up, the group returns to the ranch and spends the remainder of their stay processing their wilderness experience and preparing for discharge.

Loved ones may participate in a specialized family week program. It lasts 4.5 days and focuses on showing family members what the treatment process is like. They participate in therapy sessions as well as the daily activities on the ranch. Clients still in high school can earn up to 2.5 school credits via educational courses.

STAFF CREDENTIALS

The facility has a staff-to-client ratio of 1:5, and the clinical team includes a medical director, a consulting psychologist, and licensed addiction counselors. All wilderness instructors are certified wilderness first responders. The facility and program are ranked in the Top 100 Best Treatment Centers for Alcoholism and Drug Abuse. The program is also Licensed by the State of Montana.

ACCOMMODATIONS & AMENITIES

Originally built in 1924, the 35-bed ranch houses residents in rustic, single-level log cabins. Of the three alumni surveyed by Rehabs.com at the time of this writing, two gave the facility five out of five stars for its accommodations and amenities, and one gave the facility four out of five stars.

WHAT ALUMNI SAY

The three former clients surveyed by Rehabs.com gave Wilderness Retreat Center positive feedback. All noted that the program was serious and takes hard work. “They will make you work for your sobriety,” J.M.J. wrote. “This is ONLY for people SERIOUS about recovery,", and an anonymous reviewer described the program as “strict but fair.”

The third Rehabs.com reviewer noted having a rough time staying sober since leaving WTC. However they did not fault the program--if anything, they credited WTC with helping them later in life through harder times. In general, all of the alumni indicated that the program was worth the cost.

On Google, Wilderness Treatment Center earned an average of 3.9 out of five stars from seven reviews.[1] Two of the reviews were negative. Four of the reviews specifically mentioned the staff and how they were caring and quality. However, two alumni complained about the staff, whom they indicate were unprofessional and allowed drug use within the facility. Alum Riley went through the program twice and described how the program had changed from an “amazing experience” in 2012 to being “highly disappointed” in 2018.

On Facebook, which the facility can manage, Wilderness Treatment Center has a 4.5 out of five stars to date.[2] Forty-nine reviewers gave five out of five star reviews. A lot of the feedback came from parents who were happy with the “trained, kind and loving” staff members.

WHAT FRIENDS & FAMILY SAY

Of the six loved ones surveyed by Rehabs.com at the time of this writing, most gave the facility positive reviews. The exception was D.G.D, who gave the facility just one star for its treatment effectiveness and described it as “the most unprofessional program that exists.”

However, overall, loved ones provided extremely positive feedback about the level of staff experience, giving this category some of the highest ratings. Loved ones were relatively satisfied with the available counseling options, but preferred the wilderness program in particular.

Staff Experience and Training: 4.75/5
Counseling Options: 3.5/5

Five of the reviewers praised the program for its skill-building activities, its straightforward treatment, and the effectiveness of its wilderness program.

Loved ones were neither satisfied or dissatisfied with the level of family participation offered at the facility, but concurred that they'd highly recommend the facility to others.

Likelihood to Recommend: 4.75/5
Family Participation: 3/5

WHAT STAFF SAY

The one current staffer polled by Rehabs.com at the time of this writing gave WTC mostly high ratings, including five out of five stars for its honesty, its patient loyalty, its staff’s level of training and experience, and its willingness to put patients’ interests first. The staff member would recommend the program to others who need it.

FINANCING

Currently, the cost of treatment at the Wilderness Treatment Center is $525 per day. Private insurance is accepted, and the program is in-network with Blue Cross Blue Shield. Self-pay options are available through major credit cards, checks, and wire transfers. Financial assistance and healthcare loans can be acquired through the facility’s lending partner, Prosper Healthcare Lending.

CONCLUSION

Wilderness Treatment Center has a strong reputation and connection with the community since it has been providing treatments for community members for 30 years. Many people in the area have worked with or been affected by the services at the WTC. Local articles detail what the experience there is like from the perspective of the clients. The treatments focus on using nature to simplify clients’ lives, which continues to have an impact on the surrounding community.

[1] GoogleReviews
[2] https://www.facebook.com/pg/wildernesstreatmentcenter/reviews

Published on June 2018

User Reviews

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As a parent whose son attended WTC, the only weak link I observed in this otherwise stellar treatment center is the way one of the owner's sons, who is a counselor working directly with the boys, is allowed to degrade and provoke the boys. I want to clarify that the other son who works in the administrative end, presents himself in a professional manner. However, he seems to allow the other to sabotage the treatment the facility is providing. He was observed during family week dealing with the boys in a nontherapeutic, punitive, and aggressive way. I can only imagine how he treats the boys when families are not present. I am surprised he continues to have a license as a counselor. The dynamic at play reminds me of the family dynamic in an alcoholic family, in which the alcoholic, is enabled, and the family hides the disease and covers it up to keep up the family image. It was observed that the nonfamilial counselors have to do damage control and do not have the power to address this unhealthy dynamic stemming from a family run business if they want to stay employed at WTC. When his treatment of the boys was brought up by the boys in group therapy meetings, there seemed to be an unspoken rule to redirect this discussion. The mother, who is the owner, seems to protect her adult son from consequences of his nontherapeutic, unprofessional, and unethical behaviors. It is sad that an otherwise outstanding facility continues to allow this family member to undermine the good work they are trying to do. IT IS TIME FOR HIM TO BE REMOVED FROM DIRECT CONTACT WITH THE BOYS. The other staff members seem to have learned to either keep quiet and ignore, sometimes even defend, the bullying and unprofessional interactions with the boys. Truly, I am surprised that other boys and family members have not complained more about his behaviors. He was not obseved having problems with boys who conformed to his bullying and did not oppose him. However, any boy who defied his treatment and refused to be broken, has no avenue to discuss the treatment they are experiencing. And once the mother is informed that one of the boys has cursed her son with the same words he used with them, it seems the staff rejects the boy. Just as a sick family turns on the family member who won't conform and keep the family's secret. Most of these boys have experienced trauma in their pasts with abusive adults, and his treatment, seems to add another layer of trauma. THIS PROBLEM WITH WTC NEEDS TO BE CORRECTED IN THE BEST INTEREST OF THE BOYS, THE STAFF, AND THE COMPANY.

Our family is so thankful for this treatment center. My son attended at the age of 18 after fighting addiction for several years. It was the beginning of the road to recovery for our family. He also choose to leave the facility after a week, however we did not rescue him and allowed whatever consequences to occur. He decided to return and complete the program. WTC has all the ingredients to begin recovery and help young men who are desperate. The staff is the most qualified and caring people you will find in a rehab center.

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The most unprofessional program that exists. My son who was 18 years old attended WTC because they assured us that they are able to handle teenagers who attempt to leave programs and that was not true. After my son left his third time they basically called me when my wife and I were vacationing and said that they are going to drop my son off at a homeless shelter. My son has never been away from our home and they're threatening me to put my son in a homeless shelter? I had my attorney call them which at that point they took him to the airport. Disgusting place and unprofessional in every way.

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I went to WTC in 2004-ish(?) at the age of 16. I am now 27. Life has not been easy. I have been to two rehabs since and spent time in numerous jails and years exploring the depths of self-destruction. I have also been diagnosed with an acute and severe form of depression/anxiety/personality disorder and I honestly believe the only thing that has kept a gun out of my mouth after all these years was the life-affirming experience of WTC. Even when I have felt the walls are caving in around me, I have clung to my time at WTC as proof I could withstand anything. As a person suffering from chronic self loathing and low esteem, my mind returns to wilderness solos, clearing avalanche trails and toting a pack half my weight up mountain peaks as a high water mark of my potential. Drug addiction and mental illness are tragic and unpredictable circumstances, so a success rating is inherently unfair to any institution treating them. The odds are against them. But of all the heartache, disappointment, and financial burdens my addictions have caused my family, I dont feel the least bit bad about my time in montana. Money well spent. It's the foundation on which I built what self worth I possess, and a standard to which a hold my ambitions. I remember my legs feeling weak 10 minutes into some hikes out on "trip" and having to labor through one last step thousands of times over. And knowing that perseverance even exists within my person is without a doubt the only reason I'm still here or stand a chance. Thank you WTC. You taught me who I am and I have carried and conducted myself, despite my struggles, with the tiny flicker of hope and self-respect I gained there. My life is not a success story, but I'm here and I'm trying because of you.

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Good structure/schedule. Have seen everything since its been open for so long Strict but fair Have been sober over 10yrs. Great facility

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Simple, clear cut, no ability to "cheat" while there No fancy amenities; but I do not believe that those are needed in true rehab. This sticks to the basics of getting clean and getting counseling.

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Extracurricular activities, individual attention A good mix for the right person

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wilderness training as alternative expensive

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Not the treatment centers fault. They were excellent, the boy is a hard core addict. Great outdoor experiences. Groups and individual hikes and campouts and etc. Mountain climbing, etc. Also counciling sessions.

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its away from civilazion but too far from civilization. its ok but not sure long term.

Adolescent and Young Adult Addiction Treatment.

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It's a great place. They will make you work for your sobriety. So, if you aren't ready to get sober, don't go there. This is ONLY for people SERIOUS about recovery.

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