Montana experiences the fullness of all 4 seasons each single yr. It has lovely heat summers, colourful and funky falls, chilly and snowy winters, in addition to life-giving springs. Every season provides superb journey and adventuring alternatives.
The seasons can, nevertheless, be harsh in Montana with heavy precipitation and excessive temperatures. Whatever the climate, there are infinite probabilities to discover all that Montana has to supply.
The very best occasions to go to Montana are throughout the summer time and fall. The climate is cooperative and virtually all actions are on the desk. I’ve spent quite a few days in Montana by all 4 seasons, however the late summer time and fall are simply my favourite occasions to go.
The 12 million individuals who go to Montana a yr typically come throughout the hotter months, however the mountains and lodging refill within the winter as a result of unimaginable snowboarding and snowboarding throughout the state.
Fast Look: Finest Time to Go to Montana
For Fishing: April, June, July, August, September, and October
For Swimming: July, August, and September
For Mountain climbing: June, July, August, September, and October
For Nationwide Parks: June, July, August, September, and October
For Fewer Crowds: Might, June, September, and October
General Finest Time To Go to Montana: September
September is one of the best time to go to Montana. The climate throughout the state has begun to chill after a heat summer time and most of the people are returning again residence after a number of months of journey.
No matter the place you go to, you’ll discover that parks, trails, lakes, rivers, and mountains are far quieter than they’re throughout June, July, and August.
I’ve spent fairly a little bit of time in Montana from June by August, however up to now few years, I’ve began visiting throughout the fall. October can get chilly and snowy within the northern a part of the state, however September provides comfy temperatures wherever you go to.
It doesn’t matter should you’re tenting, fishing, or mountaineering, the climate is good. The cool mornings and heat afternoons are excellent for adventuring.
I completely love the peace and quiet that September provides after a loopy summer time of vacationers overlaying all components of the state. Plus, I’m a diehard fly angler, and the fish have a tendency to reply higher when the air temperatures are cooler, (and circumstances calm down sufficient for fish to be lively longer).
One of many ultimate issues that makes September an amazing month to go to is that peak season costs are over. Lodging, actions, and even small issues like gasoline fall again to extra regular costs presently of yr.
Montana residents begin crawling out of their summer time hibernation and start to get pleasure from all that the state has to supply now that the vacationers are gone. The whole lot is simpler to search out and it’s simpler to journey across the state freely.
Peak Season in Montana (June – August, and December – February)
Throughout the yr, June by August is when most individuals select to go to Montana. Virtually the entire trails are open and every little thing is in full bloom. The state is stuffed with households, hardcore adventurers, and every kind of vacationers in between.
Most nationwide park trails and campgrounds are fully full throughout this time. Costs are at their highest, and in depth planning is required to be sure you have entry to every little thing you want.
Fishing, mountaineering, mountain biking, and climbing are among the hottest actions throughout the peak season.
December – March is the height season throughout the winter. Snowboarders and skiers flock to the dozen or so ski resorts unfold throughout the state. Since there’s such quite a lot of snowboarding and snowboarding out there within the state, first-timers, and households, all the best way as much as professionals will be discovered on the slopes.
Snowmobiling, ice fishing, and cross-country snowboarding can also be widespread with company of Montana throughout the winter. This time of yr is certainly much less busy than the summer time, however you’ll discover excessive ranges of holiday makers in fewer areas, so it feels a bit crowded.
Shoulder Season in Montana (September – October, and Might – June)
The shoulder season is my favourite time to go to Montana. The autumn shoulder season runs from September to October. All the actions which are out there throughout the peak season in the summertime are basically all out there throughout the shoulder season too.
A few of the northern components of the states, in addition to the mountain peaks, start getting snow in October and temperatures can drop into the 20s at evening. The principle individuals on the paths, visiting the parks, and having fun with different areas are locals.
There are many full-time vacationers everywhere in the state, however the variety of vacationers is far decrease in comparison with peak season.
Within the spring, the shoulder season is Might – June. It is a difficult time to go to the state except you’re comfy spending time within the low nation. All components of the state are hit with snow, so runoff is in full pressure in Might and June.
Because the temperatures heat, rivers, streams, and higher-elevation areas are muddy and stuffed with water. Actions like fishing and common sightseeing are doable, however solely particularly areas.
Costs throughout Might and June are low, and if it’s been a very dry yr, this generally is a nice time to go to.
Off Season in Montana (October – November, and March – April)
Throughout the fall low season, adventuring will be very hit and miss. October and November present lovely fall colours, however the time of yr additionally comes with snow and different precipitation. Costs are low and most locations are pretty empty, so if privateness is what you’re after, then it’s a good time to go.
In case you’re prepared to work by some testing circumstances, you possibly can have among the hottest locations within the state to your self. There are climate home windows the place the highs are nonetheless within the 50s and 60s, however that may change extraordinarily shortly, so be ready. Areas like Bozeman, Billings, and different southern components of the state are finest to go to in late fall.
Within the spring low season, you’ll discover that climate is far and wide. At some point it might be 60 and sunny and the subsequent it’s 25 and a blizzard. The nearer you get to the mountains, the extra unpredictable the climate will get.
Like the autumn low season, the costs are low and locations are empty in comparison with the height and shoulder seasons. You’re in a position to get in some snowboarding within the northern components of the state, however for essentially the most half, you’ll be restricted to fishing and sightseeing. Deliver your snowshoes should you intend to hike!
When to Go to Montana For Swimming
The very best time to go to Montana for swimming is throughout July and August. Since virtually all lakes in Montana freeze throughout the winter, the water wants time to heat up! Plus, the typical temperature in Montana in July and August is within the high-70s to mid-80s.
It’s not unusual for there to be days over 90 levels, particularly at decrease elevations. Seashores alongside Flathead Lake in Kalispell and Whitefish Lake in Whitefish are superb to go to this time of yr. The water is comfy and the hotter circumstances provide you with an opportunity to chill off with a swim.
Different seashores, like my private favourite Lake McDonald Seaside in Glacier Nationwide Park, are nice to go to throughout these months. Since Glacier Nationwide Park is to this point north of the state, it takes some time for the ice to depart the lake, and for the air temperatures to heat the water sufficient to swim in.
When you’ll discover that lots of the lakes and rivers throughout the state don’t turn out to be like bathwater, (since most are stuffed with snowmelt and underground springs), nearly all of lakes and rivers are comfy temperatures on these hotter days.
When to Go to Montana For Snowboarding
I really like to go to Montana in January or February for snowboarding. My favourite resort, Large Sky, is finest throughout this time of yr. Sure, the temperatures are chilly, however the snow circumstances are virtually at all times excellent – the excessive elevation and 1000’s of acres out there to ski are lined in recent powder.
Christmas time is extremely busy across the ski resorts in Montana, so a mid-January or early February ski journey provides you an opportunity to search out some peace and quiet and nonetheless benefit from the superb winter circumstances.
Virtually the entire resorts throughout the state are able to creating their very own snow, nevertheless it’s not often wanted, particularly at resorts based mostly greater within the mountains. Bridger Bowl, Large Sky Resort, Whitefish Ski Resort, and Blacktail Mountain Resort are among the finest decisions within the state.
The number of slopes and challenges, in addition to the gorgeous mountain views, are extraordinarily exhausting to beat. Follow January and February, and also you’ll be comfortable.
When to Go to Montana For Cities
In case you’re hoping to benefit from the distinctive cities in Montana like Bozeman, Missoula, Kalispell, Large Sky, and Whitefish, your finest wager is to go throughout Might, June, September, or October. The temperatures are comfy and so they’re not so filled with vacationers.
Most shops and eating places run to their peak season hours, so that you don’t have to fret about lacking out on an area favourite. Plus, the climate isn’t too sizzling or chilly, so you possibly can get pleasure from strolling across the cities and never have to fret about any inclement climate.
Numerous cities in Montana don’t have public transportation, so it’s as much as you to make your method across the metropolis. Whereas Helena and Billings are distinctive in their very own proper, among the mountain “cities” are one of the best within the nation.
Missoula is my private favourite because of its distinctive structure, phenomenal eating places, and enjoyable college-town environment. Montana cities are not like many different mountain cities within the west; stuffed with historical past and consistently evolving.
When to Go to Montana For Fishing
Fishing is one of the best in Montana from mid-June to early July. Anglers may even have nice success in September and October. The months of July and August will be productive, however the hotter climate and heavy strain could make fishing tougher.
Mid-June is my favourite time to go to due to the Salmonfly hatch that happens in lots of rivers throughout the state. The Gallatin River close to Bozeman and Large Sky has a beautiful Salmonfly hatch every year.
Different rivers like Yellowstone and Madison provide higher fishing in late June – early July. It takes fairly a little bit of time for the runoff season to conclude in Montana as a result of excessive quantity of snow the encircling mountains obtain.
September and October are different good months to fish. Most vacationers have returned to their residence states, and the water ranges have dropped. The fishing turns into extra technical, however the fish are hungry and desirous to feed earlier than the chilly winter temperatures hit. I like to develop my abilities within the fall.
When to Go to Montana For Tenting
Tenting in Montana is finest from June to September. Be aware that early June and late September nights can drop into the 30s, however temperatures for many of July and August are excellent. In case you’re in greater elevations like Purple Lodge or Missoula, the nights frequently drop into the 40s, so that you gained’t ever be too sizzling whenever you’re sleeping.
The principle factor to pay attention to throughout these months is that campgrounds will be extraordinarily busy. Pay shut consideration to reservation techniques in March and April after they start opening dates to e book. You’ll wish to soar on these!
There are a lot of dispersed campgrounds throughout the state which are first-come-first-served, so that you don’t have to fret about reserving any of the websites. Plus, most Nationwide Forest land has dispersed tenting far and wide, so you possibly can stay a bit extra with out a plan and nonetheless discover an amazing place to remain.
Dispersed tenting is free, however you gained’t have any amenities, so be sure you’re geared up to go off-grid. All of my tenting experiences in Montana have been in nationwide forests or wilderness land. There are such a lot of lovely spots to select from!
When to Go to Montana for Nationwide Parks
The very best time to go to Nationwide Parks in Montana is from June to October. Glacier Nationwide Park has sections which are closed (Going to the Solar Street, and many others) till late June; be sure you take note of the nationwide park web sites to determine what’s open.
Many of the parks will likely be totally open by mid-July. Sure components have reservation techniques that final till the top of August, so visiting in September and October is finest as you gained’t have to fret about reserving your reservation as far prematurely.
Yellowstone Nationwide Park is far additional south than Glacier, so a lot of the park is accessible in June. A few of the higher-elevation trails will nonetheless be lined in snow by early July, however a lot of the park is simple to get to. Wildlife in Yellowstone is lively in June because the temperatures are rather less extreme.
Wildlife continues to be out and about in July and August, nevertheless it’s most lively throughout the mornings and evenings.
Each Glacier and Yellowstone are two of my favourite parks in the whole nation. The quantity of backcountry land out there to discover in every park is not like another park within the decrease 48.
Montana’s backcountry is my favourite place in the US and easy purposes for backcountry permits give you per week’s entry to lovely trails, phenomenal wildlife, and nice fishing.
When to Go to Montana For Low-cost Costs
For affordable costs, you’ll wish to go to Montana from September – November or April – June. Lodging, actions, eating places, and even easy purchases like groceries and gasoline are decrease throughout the shoulder and off-seasons.
Lodging fills up quick throughout the summer time, however resorts and trip leases are eager for bookings throughout the off seasons when costs are closely lowered in comparison with the height season.
Guides, outfitters, and expertise hosts are additionally conscious of the decrease site visitors throughout the offseasons and so they’ll typically provide large reductions outdoors of months that see extra guests.
Bear in mind that it could take a bit extra work to search out outfitters throughout this time as many will virtually shut down throughout the offseasons.
Montana has boomed in reputation up to now 10 years, so costs proceed to rise whatever the time of yr. Nevertheless, if you need an opportunity at some extra affordable choices, go to throughout the shoulder and off seasons.
When to Go to Montana For Mountain climbing
Mountain climbing is finest in Montana from July to September. Montana is finest to hike when the entire trails are almost vast open and are away from snow. It normally takes till mid-July for many trails to fully clear and lots of routes throughout the state gained’t ever clear fully, however they’re satisfactory by the point August hits.
Sure, the paths are busy throughout these three months, however the higher climate provides you an opportunity to get out additional away from the crowds.
I like to hike in Purple Lodge and Kalispell throughout these months. The Absaroka Wilderness and Bob-Marshall Wilderness are nonetheless comparatively untouched in comparison with the remainder of the state. There are few locations within the decrease 48 as distant as these two wilderness areas.
The wildlife and distinctive mountaineering trails are among the finest I’ve ever seen. It’s important to earn the views, however they’re at all times well worth the effort. There’s nothing fairly like a hike on a distant Montana path in the summertime.
The Finest Time to Go to Montana By Month
Every month in Montana gives its personal distinctive climate and adventures. Whereas some months are simpler to go to than others, all of them give guests entry to the superb components of the state. As soon as you understand what to anticipate in every month, it makes preparation for journey far simpler.
Montana in January
January in Montana is a part of the height season for winter vacationers and all winter actions.
Climate in Montana in January
In January, the climate in Montana is chilly and snowy. The typical temperature throughout the state is 22 levels Fahrenheit. The state is sort of fully lined in snow, so winter actions are on the forefront of everybody’s thoughts.
At over 5,000 or 6,000 ft elevation, there’s more likely to be a number of ft of snow, and temperatures are generally within the teenagers and single digits all through the day. Chilly and snowy is the secret in Montana in January.
Issues To Do in Montana in January
In January, persons are targeted on snowboarding, snowboarding, snowshoeing, snowmobiling, and ice fishing. The circumstances are excellent for winter actions all through the whole month.
Guests can spend time exploring the nationwide forests on snowmobiles, snowshoes, and skis, and I personally love taking my cross-country skis out on the paths close to Large Sky presently – normally, after I’ve ice-fished or snowboarded at Large Sky Resort.
Montana in February
In February, Montana continues to be within the midst of winter, however the vacationer numbers aren’t as excessive as they’re firstly of the yr.
Climate in Montana in February
The climate in February isn’t fully totally different than the climate in January. The typical temperature throughout the state is 27 levels Fahrenheit and snow continues to be a standard incidence.
At greater elevations, temperatures hover across the single digits at evening and the mid-teens or low-20s throughout the day. Snow frequently happens with a few ft of recent powder hitting the mountains each few weeks.
Issues To Do in Montana in February
In February, vacationers are both spending their time fully indoors or outdoors having fun with winter actions. Visiting Whitefish Ski Resort in February is a private favourite as a result of temperatures aren’t as brutal and the slopes aren’t as busy as they are often in January.
Ice fishing can also be nice in February. With barely hotter temperatures, fish turn out to be extra lively. Canyon Ferry Reservoir close to Helena is without doubt one of the finest locations to ice fish in Montana in February.
Montana in March
Montana in March is without doubt one of the slowest by way of tourism and the climate begins to vary because it turns into hotter and extra springlike.
Climate in Montana in March
In March, the decrease elevations sit within the mid-30s for the typical temperature. It’s nonetheless not unusual to see a number of snow storms all through the month and a few excessive temperatures, however decrease elevation areas turn out to be fairly comfy.
At elevations close to 5,000 ft, winter continues to be in pressure in March. The foremost distinction is that there’ll sometimes be abnormally heat days within the 40s and 50s, however 20-degree days and snow storms will nonetheless frequently happen – winter isn’t completed but.
Issues To Do in Montana in March
In March, winter actions are heading towards their final leg. Most ski resorts will keep open all through the whole month so long as there’s sufficient snow. Snowmobile trails are nonetheless good to go to, however beware that as quickly because the snow begins melting within the mountains, getting caught turns into an actual chance.
Individuals are beginning to fish within the rivers and streams as a result of warming temperatures presently, and you may nonetheless go to the mountain cities earlier than they gradual method down for the quiet season.
Montana in April
April in Montana is one other gradual month for tourism and the climate begins to turn out to be extra comfy.
Climate in Montana in April
Climate in Montana in April is about as predictable because the Powerball numbers. At decrease elevations, you’ll discover temperatures sitting within the low-60s with fairly a number of days of rain.
At greater elevations, temperatures begin to rise and the runoff season begins. Snow begins melting and filling each lake, stream, and river round. There will be some days of snow, however temperatures are largely within the 40s for a excessive.
Issues To Do in Montana in April
In April, Montana is in a time of transition. Because of this, there isn’t a concrete exercise that at all times happens. Mountain climbing trails are moist from snowmelt, rivers are starting to fill, and the ski resorts are possible closed.
Because of this, most individuals keep at decrease elevations and luxuriate in mountain biking or sightseeing excursions. Anglers could also be hitting rivers and streams earlier than the runoff turns into too excessive. Take this time to go to cities and check out some indoor actions.
Montana in Might
In Might, the vacationer numbers are nonetheless down and the snow runoff is at its peak. The crops are starting to bloom and virtually every little thing is moist.
Climate in Montana in Might
In Might, the climate throughout Montana is far hotter. Common temperatures climb into the mid-60s, however rain continues to be frequent at decrease elevations.
At greater elevations, temperatures crawl into the 50s with some good spring rains that add to the already important melting course of. Bear in mind that Might is a standard time for flooding in Montana.
Issues To Do in Montana in Might
Like April, outside actions are a bit extra of a problem. The unpredictable climate and altering circumstances invite guests to go to among the quaint mountain cities as they put together for the height summer time season.
Driving excursions and wildlife excursions are nice in Might. Go to Yellowstone Nationwide Park and see the park come to life after an extended winter.
Montana in June
Peak season in Montana begins in June and virtually all summer time actions can be found for vacationers to get pleasure from.
Climate in Montana in June
The climate in June throughout the state is sort of at its finest. Temperatures throughout the day are within the mid-70s at decrease elevations and rain isn’t as frequent as it’s throughout April and Might.
At greater elevations, the temperatures are within the high-60s and mid-70s. The whole lot is starting to dry and turn out to be much more accessible for adventurers.
Issues To Do in Montana in June
When you gained’t possible be summiting any peaks in June, many trails under 10,000 ft elevation are much more accessible, and lots of the trails throughout the nationwide parks are accessible.
Runoff has normally subsided by June, so fishing is extraordinarily productive. The Salmonfly hatch happens in June, so hit the Gallatin if doable.
Montana in July
Montana in July is totally lovely with sunny skies, clear trails, and entry to all issues that make Montana nice in the summertime.
Climate in Montana in July
Decrease elevation temperatures in July simply attain the mid-80s and into the low-90s and it’s normally dry.
Within the mountains, July is a good month. The times are normally round 75 or 80 levels and the nights are nonetheless within the 40s and 50s.
Issues To Do in Montana in July
Montana is totally alive in July. Each mountain city, path, and exercise is in full swing. Mountain biking, backpacking, fishing, horseback driving, and climbing are among the commonest actions.
At any time when I go to in July, I attempt to cowl as many miles on trails as I can. Lots of the higher-elevation trails turn out to be accessible and my eagerness to summit some mountains will increase past perception.
Montana in August
Montana in August is stuffed with vacationers, cool evenings, heat days, and summer time actions at their peak.
Climate in Montana in August
August in Montana is similar to July. The decrease elevations may even see extra temperatures within the 90s, however they’ll get a bit extra rain than in July.
Larger elevations sit in temperatures that common 80 to 85 levels and have nights within the excessive 40s or low 50s. That is the final month of true warmth in Montana.
Issues To Do in Montana in August
August in Montana continues to be stuffed with summer time actions. A few of the areas which are packed by snow within the winter lastly turn out to be accessible in August, so hold that in thoughts. Biking, climbing, and mountaineering are widespread actions throughout this time.
Fishing will be gradual because of much less rainfall and hotter temperatures, so be sure you’re out early or within the evenings to have one of the best likelihood.
Montana in September
Montana in September is when vacationers start to depart and every little thing begins to relax after a full summer time of tens of millions of holiday makers passing by the state.
Climate in Montana in September
September in Montana is when the temperature variations between high and low elevations turn out to be huge. At low elevations, temperatures are frequently within the 80s and low 90s, however rain is much more frequent in September.
At elevation, temperatures fall from the 80s to the mid to low 70s and there are extra constant 40-degree nights. Keep in mind that the mountain storms in September will be intense.
Issues To Do in Montana in September
September is one of the best month to attempt all the normal summer time actions in Montana. Nowhere is totally lined by snow and among the hottest locations turn out to be far quieter as a result of decrease ranges of vacationers.
Mountain climbing, fishing, climbing, and biking are nonetheless what you need to be doing in September. My favourite half is that the bushes at greater elevations start to vary colours.
Montana in October
Fall colours and funky temperatures fill the state in October with virtually all summer time actions nonetheless out there.
Climate in Montana in October
The climate in October at decrease elevations is normally someplace within the 60s and low 70s firstly of the month. By the top, temperatures solely attain into the 50s for highs.
At elevations above 5,000 ft, temperatures are constantly within the 50s and the nights are someplace within the 30s. Plus, snow is beginning to fall at these elevations above 8,000 ft.
Issues To Do in Montana in October
In October, most summer time actions are nonetheless out there on the decrease elevations. You gained’t be spending time above 8,000 or 9,000 ft with out seeing snow, however under that, you possibly can nonetheless hike, bike, and climb with out worrying about an excessive amount of snow.
Fishing can also be nice in October. I like to fish in October as a result of the fish are desirous to fatten up earlier than winter totally hits. Take a look at Rock Creek close to Purple Lodge. I at all times have success, right here.
Montana in November
November in Montana is the primary month of winter circumstances, so be ready for empty trails and dig out your winter adventuring gear.
Climate in Montana in November
In November, the decrease elevations constantly see temperatures within the low-40s throughout the day and 20s and 30s at evening.
Within the mountains, winter has arrived by November. Temperatures sit across the freezing mark throughout the day and drop into the teenagers and 20s at evening. Plus, snow is beginning to hit frequently at elevations above 5,000 or 6,000 ft.
Issues To Do in Montana in November
Some ski resorts are in a position to open in November, however most individuals are snowshoeing and snowmobiling round a few of these greater elevations. Cross-country snowboarding can also be extraordinarily widespread.
Spend time within the cities and on concrete throughout November. Montana normally wants this month to transition into full winter mode.
Montana in December
All winter actions turn out to be out there in December as a result of chilly circumstances and better snowfall.
Climate in Montana in December
In December, decrease elevations see temperatures round freezing and obtain fairly a little bit of snow. Winter has totally hit decrease elevations by December.
Within the mountains, temperatures are within the 20s and snow is constantly hitting greater elevations above 5,000 ft. It’s a winter wonderland in all places you flip within the mountains all through December.
Issues To Do in Montana in December
Snowfall needs to be excessive sufficient that each one ski resorts are open and winter actions are in full impact. Snowboard, ski, ice fish, and snowshoe your method across the mountains – they’re a must-see in winter by all means.
Most cities have adorned properly for Christmas, so that they’re nice to go to after an extended day of adventuring.
Selecting one of the best time to go to Montana isn’t at all times the simplest as a result of number of actions out there and the climate circumstances to pay attention to. In case you actually wish to expertise Montana and all its true magnificence, it’s finest to go to throughout all 4 seasons. You’ll at all times discover lots to do.
Every time I go to, I discover myself feeling that I really like a distinct season finest. Montana has by no means let me down no matter once I go to.