With more than 100 annual events on the calendar between May and November, it’s hard to drive through Montana and Wyoming without running into rodeo action somewhere. Stop. Buy a ticket. The bleachers are fine. These small-town rodeos offer a unique window into life here.
Montana is a big state, but for those who don’t mind doing some driving, it’s possible (indeed, exhilarating) to do a wide-ranging tour. Expect this Tour de Montana to take the better part of two weeks. If you really want to explore any particular area, add more time.
Exploring Glacier National Park, along with Waterton Lakes National Park—collectively the Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park—yields indelible memories. Enjoy a two-nation vacation by staying in historic lodges. Plan ahead; you’ll need lodging reservations inside the park a year in advance.
Oodles of two-lane highways and paved country lanes make long loops around Flathead Lake or short farmland tours for roadies, and there are many single-track and dirt-road choices for mountain bikers. Here’s where to go for each, along with bike rental and repair shops in the area.
Glacier National Park hosts a plethora of plants and animals; lots of usual suspects, such as bears, wolves, elk, and bighorn sheep, but also quite a few unique species. Most interesting among them are species of the North Fork, including incredibly tiny animals, some weighing even less than an ounce, and creative carnivorous plants. And with North Fork’s plentiful and varied bird species, birders will have a ball.