5 Reasons to Visit Montana in the Winter
I have spent my fair share of time driving through Montana since it happens to be the bordering state below Alberta. This holiday break, however, I decided to make Montana my destination rather than a state to drive through. That turned out to be the best decision ever. Montana is the third least populated state in the US but what it lacks in population, it certainly makes up for in natural beauty. I would liken the terrain to that of Alberta’s – prairies, badlands, and of course the awe-inspiring Rocky Mountains. Keep scrolling for 5 reasons to visit Montana in the winter.
I am the type of person that has issues with immense crowds for extended periods of time. I unfortunately learned about that when I went to Disneyland the day after Christmas last year. Big mistake. For those of us who shy away from crowds when we’re supposed to be on a relaxing vacation, then Montana is for you! There are notably fewer people around. Do you know what that means? Quiet hotels with ample rooms available. (Might I suggest the Sacajawea Hotel!) Waiting for a table to open up for the dinnertime rush is also not a thing. Breeze through the trip without being inconvenienced by high tourist season.
Countless Outdoor Activities
A part of Montana’s charm is the wonderful outdoor experiences it has to offer. And those experiences aren’t limited to the weather being nice either. There are two National Parks in Montana: Glacier National Park and the infamous Yellowstone National Park. Although the roads leading into Yellowstone are closed during the snowy seasons, there are two ways to gain access to the park: snowmobile or snowcoach. Here’s a great overview of Yellowstone in the winter. Aside from just snowmobiling, the option to cross country ski, snowshoe, or downhill ski are all options. Or just catch the snowcoach to check out a massive geyser in the winter. Old Faithful is a year round spectacle.
So Many Hot Springs
After a long day of traipsing in the snow, or even if winter sports are not a point of interest, the hot springs are a great way to conclude a day. Montana is a state of high thermal activity and thus is home to several hot springs. In fact, they are so prevalent that there is even a town in Montana called Hot Springs. Just saying. Chico, Norris, and Bozeman hot springs are all within a short drive of each other. The latter two even have stages for live musical performances. Plus, in the evening Bozeman has mood lighting – just peep those two photos for some visual confirmation of its awesomeness.
Winter Junior Ranger
What’s a trip to a National Park without becoming a Not So Junior Ranger… or even just a Junior Ranger? It’s become a tradition of mine to discover new parks to get badges at whenever I’m in the US. I first discovered the program last year and had a blast getting my first badge at Saguaro National Park in Arizona. The best part about becoming a Yellowstone Junior Ranger is that it has two different badges – one for the summertime and one for winter! Double the fun.
Those Montana Sunsets
Montana is unofficially known as Big Sky Country. Despite that name not being deemed official from the powers that be, it’s a very apt description of the state. I saw some of the most outrageously stunning sunsets set on the backdrop of freshly fallen glittering snow and pastel mountains. It is breathtaking.
Plan That Road Trip!
Now that I’ve counted down my 5 reasons to visit Montana in the winter, every one needs to get their motors running and plan a trip out! Fear not, there’s still a couple snowy months left of this winter. 🙂
photographs – Jesse Sand / Sandy Joe Karpetz