Updated: Apr 20
Montana is a western state defined by its diverse terrain ranging from the Rocky Mountains to the Great Plains. Its wide-open spaces include Glacier National Park - a beautiful and vast wilderness preserve that passes into Canada. Throughout Montana there are National Parks, National Forest lands, and other attractions offering interesting vacation options.
Visit Glacier National Park
With over 700 miles of trails, Glacier is a hiker's paradise for adventurous visitors seeking wilderness and solitude. Glacier National Park offers a multitude of activities and sight seeing that it would be hard to post everything here in this short paragraph. I've included a really mesmerizing YouTube video here of some of the beauty that captivates this enormous park.
Drive The Sun Road
The only road that crosses Glacier National Park in Montana is a spectacular 50 mile two-lane highway running east and west. This is one of the most scenic routes in all of America and the view from either side of the road gives its own stunning views. Sun Road passes through almost every type of terrain in the park, from large glacial lakes and cedar forests in the lower valleys to windswept alpine tundra atop Logans pass.
Explore BEAR GULCH IN CENTRAL MONTANA
A treasure trove of ancient art, displaying more than 4,000 pictographs and petroglyphs that date back as early as 1000 CE.The 100-foot rock face has the largest known collection of Plains Indian rock art. The drawings depict different scenes from everyday life, such as warriors with shields and clubs and animals like elk and bison.
These snapshots of tribal life are joined by marks of graffiti made by American pioneers in the 1800s; travelers heading west on the wagon trail that once hugged the gulch carved their names into the rock face here. The collection provides a unique juxtaposition of ancient and recent history.
Find The Kootenai Falls Swinging Bridge
Montana’s Kootenai National Forest offers spectacular fall scenery, and you can view the trees plus river rapids and a waterfall on the Kootenai Falls Swinging Bridge hike. The trailhead for this hike is located between the cities of Troy and Libby in northwestern Montana. The hike itself is a little over a mile round-trip and includes several different sections. This was a place where tribal members communed with spiritual forces and it doesn't surprise us that Kootenai Falls is one of the largest free-flowing waterfalls in the Northwest. The falls and surrounding area are considered sacred to the Kootenai Indians whose ancestors inhabited the region.
Visit The Abandoned Bannack State Park
Seems like every state has its ghost town and this is the haunting town of Montana. Bannack is a ghost town in Beaverhead County and was founded in 1862 when John White discovered gold on Grasshopper Creek. There are rumors of a crooked town sheriff, stagecoach robberies, vigilante justice and lynchings were the main events throughout this small town.
National Bison Range
Established in 1908 to provide a sanctuary for the American bison the National Bison Range is one of the oldest National Wildlife Refuges in the United States. Two scenic roads allow vehicular access to prime viewing areas. The 18,500 acre range was established to support a population of American bison. It is home to about 350-500 of these animals.
Explore Yellowstone National Park
Yellowstone features dramatic canyons, alpine rivers, lush forests, hot springs and gushing geysers! Yellowstone is home to grizzly bears, black bears, grey wolves, bobcats, coyotes, moose and even mountain lions just to name a few. While your there check out the hot springs (The Grand Prismatic Spring) as well as Old Faithful. I would also recommend staying INSIDE the park to make the most of your vacation. There really is adventure around every corner. We were in awe when we visited last.
Admire The Big Skies
Montana is known for its skies. No place in the world can you do better star gazing! It's also one of the only places on Earth where you can witness the aurora borealis!