Montana is the 4th largest state in the US by area, however, 8th least populated. The western half of Montana contains numerous mountain ranges, while the eastern half is characterized by western prairie terrain and badlands, with smaller mountain ranges found throughout the state. There are a total of 77 named ranges that are part of the Rocky Mountains.
Before we move on, did you know that every week we send out a newsletter featuring:
- New Destinations on the Tripio app
- Highlighted Itineraries on the Tripio app
- 3 Articles from the Tripio blog
Subscribe to Tripio’s Weekly Newsletter!
The Capital of Montana is Helena with the largest city being Billings. Montana is the kind of place that, just at the mention of it, sparks curiosity and fuels adventure. No matter where you are, an outdoor Adventure awaits. The average elevation is 3,400 feet with the highest peak, Granite Peak, at 12,807 feet making Montana the ultimate destination for all hiking enthusiasts.
Yellowstone is the most well known adventure in Montana. West Yellowstone is in Montana while Yellowstone National Park is located in Wyoming. There are several different tour operators with unique activities to give you the best experience that Yellowstone has to offer.
Whitewater rafting, Horseback riding, fishing, and hiking are only a few of the many adventures you will have. Pictograph Cave State Park in Billings, Geyser Whitewater Expeditions in Big Sky, and Skydive Whitefish in Whitefish are some of the activities to highlight that stretch from North to South in the Western part of the state.
Sports Fans listen up!
Although Montana lacks in professional sports teams, they do however make up for it with their love for College Sports. Montana Grizzlies in Missoula and Montana State Bobcats in Bozeman are the main Universities with a huge turn out to their games. The Pioneer League, Single A Baseball, plays in Billings, Butte and Missoula. The Bozeman Ice Dogs and Great Falls Americans round out the sports in Hockey.
You should expect great weather in the Late Spring, Summer, and Fall for Montana. Summers are short, warm, and mostly clear and the winters are freezing, snowy, and partly cloudy. The warm season lasts for nearly 3 months, from June to September, with an average daily high temperature above 74°F. The hottest month of the year in Montana is July, with an average high of 83°F and low of 54°F. The cold season lasts for just over 3 months, from November to February, with an average daily high temperature below 40°F. The coldest month of the year in Montana is December, with an average low of 14°F and high of 31°F. When planning your trip, be sure to check the local weather as some of the adventures depend on the weather.
Interesting Facts about Montana:
- Montana is 1 of the 9 mountainous states located in the western United States.
- Butte, Montana is called the “richest hill on planet earth”.
- Montana has a large population of grizzly bears.
- Montana has two popular nicknames, “Big Sky Country” and “The Treasure State”.
- It is the only state in the U.S. to share a land border with 3 Canadian provinces (British Columbia, Alberta, and Saskatchewan).
- There are more cattle than human beings in Montana.
- Montana has one of the world’s largest collections of dinosaur fossils.
- There are more than 3000 named lakes and reservoirs in Montana.
Let’s delve into the best adventures to be had in Montana.
Flying Pig Adventures in Yellowstone was a recipient of the TripAdvisor 2021 Travelers Choice Award. They thrive on adventure, just as surely as if it is the air we breathe or the food we eat. At Flying Pig Adventures Yellowstone, they are the Outfitters to answer that call back to nature. They offer premium whitewater rafting, western-style horseback riding, and world-class fly fishing adventures that the whole family can enjoy.
A Vacation to Montana is not complete without a visit to Yellowstone national park. Yellowstone National Park is a wilderness recreation area atop a volcanic hot spot. Mostly in Wyoming, the park spreads into parts of Montana and Idaho as well. Yellowstone features dramatic canyons, alpine rivers, lush forests, hot springs and gushing geysers, including its most famous, Old Faithful. It’s also home to hundreds of animal species, including bears, wolves, bison, elk and antelope. There are several different tour companies who offer fun, adventure driven tours of Yellowstone so make sure to check the Tripio App for those tour companies.
Within Yellowstone National Park, most park roads close to regular traffic in preparation for the winter season around early November. Come December when the roads are fully packed with snow, the only way to visit Old Faithful, the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone, and other popular destinations during winter is by guided snowmobile or snow coach. In the Tripio App select Back Country Adventures to take one of their guided adventures. As they also offer snowmobile rentals and guided snow coach tours. The great thing about the Tripio app is that it will generate a custom top 10 and custom itinerary for your vacation! Showing you all the best things to do in Montana.
About an hour north from White Water Rafting with Flying Pig, you can indulge in another intense, heart stopping adventure with DZone Skydiving of Bozeman. They offer tandem skydiving to enjoy with minimal preparation and training. They love having first-time jumpers to enjoy the thrill of a first time jump. From downtown Bozeman, DZONE Skydiving – Bozeman is a short 30 min drive and a local favorite. Trill seekers, be sure to add this to your vacation itinerary.
As you continue your drive to northern Montana, The World Museum of Mining is a must stop. It preserves the enduring history of Butte and the legacy of its rich mining and cultural heritage. It’s one of the few museums in the world located on an actual mine yard, the Orphan Girl Mine. With 50 exhibit buildings, countless artifacts, and 66 primary exhibits in the mine yard, visitors can spend a couple of hours to an entire day lost in the unfolding story. By walking the streets of Hell Roarin’ Gulch and venturing to the depths of the Orphan Girl Mine, you can almost see their blackened faces and hear their exhausted sighs at the conclusion of the workday.
An Underground Mine Tour is available, you go 100 feet into the Orphan Girl Mine to see the original shaft station. The Gift Shops are full of wonderful trinkets to bring the memories home.
Our Lady of the Rockies is a 90-foot statue sitting atop the Continental Divide. It’s also the fourth tallest statue in the United States. The base sits at an elevation of 8510 feet above sea level and 3500 feet above the mile high city of Butte. The statue, lit and visible at night, is a spectacular sight to behold and pays a special homage to all mothers around the world.
Nestled just outside of Anaconda along the Pintler Scenic Highway is a high adventure completely unlike anything you’ve ever experienced. You will be immersed in the unparalleled beauty of the panoramic Pintler Wilderness while zip lining Montana’s longest zip line course over 9,300 feet. Their course is considered intensive and action packed as their lines reach very high speeds. However, be sure to check on their seasonal hours to ensure you plan accordingly.
About 1.5 hours from Anaconda, Montana is a tiny town where Garnet Ghost town is located. There was a time, over a hundred years ago, when Garnet was a thriving town, filled with gold miners and their families. Working hard to carve out a community in the heart of the Garnet Mountains. In 1898, somewhere around 1,000 people called Garnet their home and today a select few buildings remain. Furthermore, Garnet is open year-round, daily from 9:30am-4:30pm, however access is limited in the winter. Add this to your itinerary to sprinkle in some spookiness to your vacation.
Whitefish Mountain Resort is a year round resort offering a variety of activities, mostly outdoors. Some of those activities include Skiing, Snowboarding, Mountain Biking, Hiking, Adventure Park, and so much more. Due to some of the activities based on weather, make sure to check the website for current conditions.
Finish up your Western Montana adventure by visiting one of the most beautiful places, Glacier National Park. The Tripio App has taken you on a 300+ mile road trip filled with a great variety of activities but this is truly saving the best for last. Glacier National Park showcases melting glaciers, alpine meadows, carved valleys, and spectacular lakes. With over 700 miles of trails, Glacier National Park is a paradise for adventure seekers looking for wilderness steeped in human history. Relive the days of old through historic chalets, lodges, and the famous Going-to-the-Sun Road. Glacier National park should be on every adventurers custom top 10 and custom itinerary. Download the Tripio app now and start adding to your bucket list. These are the top things to do in Montana for adventurers.
Thank you for reading, remember, adventure awaits you on the Tripio App because Travel has never been so easy!
If you liked my blog on The Best Adventures in Western Montana, why not check out my blog on: Missoula: Best Experiences
-Catherine Mortimer, Tripio Guru
Download the free Tripio app on iOS and Android!