When is the Most Ideal Time to Visit Montana?

The broad landscapes and vast wildness of Montana are the state’s most recognizable features. This is a state made for explorers, whether they choose to explore on foot, skis, or a boat. The winter and summer tourist seasons in Montana are diametrically opposed to one another. The long, snowy winters bring tourists looking to ski on fresh powder, but the bright, sunny summers and mild evenings incite year-round enjoyment. As Mandy Hotovy, general manager of The Wilson Hotel in Big Sky, Montana, puts it, “There’s a saying here in Big Sky that ‘people come for the winter and stay for the summer,’ and I would agree with that.”

Springtime in Swiftcurrent Valley Glacier NP.
The plan backpacking trips with gear rentals

Visit during one of the two shoulder seasons for fewer tourists and cheaper prices. Steven Boldt, head of digital tools at RightOnTrek, a company based near Glacier National Park that helps people plan backpacking trips with gear rentals and dehydrated meal plans, recommends coming out in the spring or fall if you want to enjoy a visit to one of our mountain towns or head up to Glacier National Park.

Let’s start with the basics of Montana’s tourist seasons so you can choose the ideal time to come based on your plans:

Best Times to Visit Montana for Smaller Crowds 

The seasons of spring and autumn in Montana are notably calmer. Most ski communities have a welcome respite from the throngs of tourists after the ski resorts shut for the season in early March. When the leaves change and the temperature drops in the autumn, hikers may take advantage of the open trails with little more than an additional layer. You should verify opening dates ahead of time to be sure that your preferred outfitters, motels, and tour operators are available for business when you plan to visit.

Hotovy explains, “Our’secret season’ is the shoulder season if you have your heart set on Yellowstone National Park.” Some of the greatest periods to go are May–June and September–October. Less people in the park means a more personal encounter with Old Faithful or a chance to observe some animals.

Best Times to Visit Montana for Good Weather 

If you’re hoping for a powder day, the best time to visit Big Sky and other ski resorts is between December and March, when the average monthly snowfall is 60 inches.

Hotovy recommends traveling between July and September if you want to experience “longer, warmer days that allow for more time to recreate outdoors, alfresco dinners, and gorgeous sunsets.”

Man sitting on a cliff and looking at the mountains and a river in Glacier National Park
The traveling between July

Best Times to Visit Montana for Lower Prices 

Travelers wishing to save money can consider taking their journey to the north in the spring or autumn, when there are less tourists and thus cheaper pricing. Travelers should pack for a wide range of conditions, since the weather in the shoulder seasons is notoriously unpredictable. Even still, I think the pricing are fantastic. Many hotels that are completely booked throughout the winter and summer months may have greater availability and reduced prices during the shoulder seasons of spring and autumn.

“Though some activities will probably be limited, the shoulder seasons from April-June and October-November are perfect for avoiding the crowds and enjoying off-season rates,” said Boldt.

Best Times to Visit Montana for Hiking

According to Boldt, the best time to go hiking in the area of Glacier National Park is between the middle of July and the middle of October, when the snow has melted and the routes are easy to navigate. As the assistant general manager of Moonlight Basin, a private club in Big Sky, Greg Wagner had this to say: “You can’t go wrong hiking around Big Sky in any of the summer months — you’ll find different wildflowers and wildlife along the trails as the season progresses.”

However, they agree that September is one of the best months to go trekking. Our favorite month to hit the trails is September. In contrast to Boldt’s “warm, sunny days mixed with slightly chilly nights,” Wagner’s “starting in September, we have crisp mornings, blue skies, and the daytime temperatures are perfect for being active outside” describes the weather in September.

Three people cross country skiing in Glacier National Park
Times to Visit Montana for Hiking

Best Times to Visit Montana for Skiing and Snowboarding

Wagner claims that March is his favorite time to ski in Montana, despite the fact that the season often begins in late November and continues until the middle or end of April. “March is my favorite month to hit the slopes if I had to choose just one. Epic spring skiing and many snow days have made Big Sky famous. After a hard day on the mountain, there’s no better time than March for an après-ski party on the patio of one of our ski lodges, thanks to the longer days and milder afternoons.

Hotovy suggests waiting until after the New Year but before Martin Luther King Jr. weekend if you want to ski sans crowds. Skiers “can expect town to be a little quieter and the lift lines at the resort to be a little shorter” during this “sweet drift hunters spot,” she adds.

Worst Times to Visit Montana

Don’t plan a trip to Montana in the spring or autumn if you want to find services and attractions open and readily accessible. This is when many summer and winter vacation towns go down for the season. You can dodge the crowds and save money, but you could miss out on some of Montana’s best attractions.

Uneeb Khan
Uneeb Khan CEO at blogili.com. Have 4 years of experience in the websites field. Uneeb Khan is the premier and most trustworthy informer for technology, telecom, business, auto news, games review in World.

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