Montana experiences the fullness of all 4 seasons each single 12 months. It has lovely heat summers, colourful and funky falls, chilly and snowy winters, in addition to life-giving springs. Every season presents wonderful journey and adventuring alternatives.
The seasons can, nevertheless, be harsh in Montana with heavy precipitation and excessive temperatures. Whatever the climate, there are countless possibilities to discover all that Montana has to supply.
The most effective occasions to go to Montana are throughout the summer season and fall. The climate is cooperative and nearly all actions are on the desk. I’ve spent quite a few days in Montana via all 4 seasons, however the late summer season and fall are simply my favourite occasions to go.
The 12 million individuals who go to Montana a 12 months typically come throughout the hotter months, however the mountains and lodging replenish within the winter as a result of unbelievable snowboarding and snowboarding throughout the state.
Fast Look: Greatest 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: May, June, September, and October
Total Greatest Time To Go to Montana: September
September is the most effective time to go to Montana. The climate throughout the state has begun to chill after a heat summer season 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 via 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 presents comfy temperatures wherever you go to.
It doesn’t matter for those who’re tenting, fishing, or mountaineering, the climate is right. The cool mornings and heat afternoons are excellent for adventuring.
I completely love the peace and quiet that September presents after a loopy summer season of vacationers overlaying all elements 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 situations quiet down sufficient for fish to be energetic longer).
One of many last issues that makes September an awesome month to go to is that peak season costs are over. Lodging, actions, and even small issues like fuel fall again to extra regular costs at the moment of 12 months.
Montana residents begin crawling out of their summer hibernation and start to get pleasure from all that the state has to supply now that the vacationers are gone. Every part is less complicated to seek out and it’s simpler to journey across the state freely.
Peak Season in Montana (June – August, and December – February)
In the course of the 12 months, June via August is when most individuals select to go to Montana. Virtually all the trails are open and all the pieces is in full bloom. The state is full of households, hardcore adventurers, and every kind of vacationers in between.
Most national park trails and campgrounds are utterly full throughout this time. Costs are at their highest, and intensive planning is required to be sure you have entry to all the pieces you want.
Fishing, hiking, mountain biking, and climbing are a few of 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 a wide range of snowboarding and snowboarding obtainable within the state, first-timers, and households, all the way in which as much as professionals will be discovered on the slopes.
Snowmobiling, ice fishing, and cross-country snowboarding can also be in style with friends of Montana throughout the winter. This time of 12 months is certainly much less busy than the summer season, however you’ll discover excessive ranges of tourists in fewer areas, so it feels a bit of crowded.
Shoulder Season in Montana (September – October, and Could – June)
The shoulder season is my favourite time to go to Montana. The autumn shoulder season runs from September to October. The entire actions which are obtainable throughout the peak season in the summertime are basically all obtainable throughout the shoulder season too.
A number of the northern elements of the states, in addition to the mountain peaks, start getting snow in October and temperatures can drop into the 20s at evening. The primary folks 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 number of tourists is way decrease in comparison with peak season.
Within the spring, the shoulder season is Could – June. This can be a difficult time to go to the state except you’re comfy spending time within the low nation. All elements of the state are hit with snow, so runoff is in full drive in Could and June.
Because the temperatures heat, rivers, streams, and higher-elevation areas are muddy and full of water. Actions like fishing and basic sightseeing are attainable, however solely particularly areas.
Costs throughout Could and June are low, and if it’s been a very dry 12 months, this is usually a nice time to go to.
Off Season in Montana (October – November, and March – April)
In the course of the fall low season, adventuring will be very hit and miss. October and November present lovely fall colours, however the time of 12 months 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 the event you’re keen to work via some testing situations, you possibly can have a few of 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 rapidly, so be ready. Areas like Bozeman, Billings, and different southern elements of the state are greatest to go to in late fall.
Within the spring low season, you’ll discover that climate is in all places. In the future it might be 60 and sunny and the following 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 elements of the state, however for essentially the most half, you’ll be restricted to fishing and sightseeing. Carry your snowshoes for those who intend to hike!
When to Go to Montana For Swimming
The most effective time to go to Montana for swimming is throughout July and August. Since nearly 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 wonderful to go to this time of 12 months. The water is comfy and the hotter situations offer you an opportunity to chill off with a swim.
Different seashores, like my private favourite Lake McDonald Seashore in Glacier Nationwide Park, are nice to go to throughout these months. Since Glacier National Park is thus far north of the state, it takes some time for the ice to go away 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 into like bathwater, (since most are full of snowmelt and underground springs), the vast majority of lakes and rivers are comfy temperatures on these hotter days.
When to Go to Montana For Snowboarding
I like to go to Montana in January or February for snowboarding. My favourite resort, Big Sky, is greatest throughout this time of 12 months. Sure, the temperatures are chilly, however the snow situations are nearly all the time excellent – the excessive elevation and hundreds of acres obtainable to ski are coated in contemporary powder.
Christmas time is extremely busy across the ski resorts in Montana, so a mid-January or early February ski journey offers you an opportunity to seek out some peace and quiet and nonetheless benefit from the wonderful winter situations.
Virtually all the resorts throughout the state are able to creating their very own snow, but it surely’s hardly ever wanted, particularly at resorts based mostly greater within the mountains. Bridger Bowl, Big Sky Resort, Whitefish Ski Resort, and Blacktail Mountain Resort are a few of the greatest decisions within the state.
The number of slopes and challenges, in addition to the gorgeous mountain views, are extraordinarily exhausting to beat. Persist with January and February, and also you’ll be comfortable.
When to Go to Montana For Cities
In the event you’re hoping to benefit from the distinctive cities in Montana like Bozeman, Missoula, Kalispell, Big Sky, and Whitefish, your greatest wager is to go throughout Could, June, September, or October. The temperatures are comfy they usually’re not so full of 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.
A variety of cities in Montana don’t have public transportation, so it’s as much as you to make your manner across the metropolis. Whereas Helena and Billings are distinctive in their very own proper, a few of the mountain “cities” are the most effective within the nation.
Missoula is my private favourite attributable to its distinctive structure, phenomenal eating places, and enjoyable college-town environment. Montana cities are in contrast to many different mountain cities within the west; full of historical past and always evolving.
When to Go to Montana For Fishing
Fishing is the most effective in Montana from mid-June to early July. Anglers may also 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 more difficult.
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 Big Sky has an exquisite 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 wanting to feed earlier than the chilly winter temperatures hit. I like to develop my expertise within the fall.
When to Go to Montana For Tenting
Tenting in Montana is greatest 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 the event you’re in greater elevations like Red Lodge or Missoula, the nights commonly drop into the 40s, so that you gained’t ever be too sizzling whenever you’re sleeping.
The primary factor to pay attention to throughout these months is that campgrounds will be extraordinarily busy. Pay shut consideration to reservation programs in March and April once they start opening dates to e-book. You’ll wish to bounce on these!
There are lots 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 in all places, so you possibly can dwell a bit of extra and not using a plan and nonetheless discover an awesome place to remain.
Dispersed camping is free, however you gained’t have any services, 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 most effective time to go to Nationwide Parks in Montana is from June to October. Glacier National Park has sections which are closed (Going to the Solar Highway, and so forth) till late June; be sure you take note of the nationwide park web sites to determine what’s open.
A lot of the parks will probably be totally open by mid-July. Sure elements have reservation programs that final till the tip of August, so visiting in September and October is greatest as you gained’t have to fret about reserving your reservation as far prematurely.
Yellowstone National Park is way additional south than Glacier, so a lot of the park is accessible in June. A number of the higher-elevation trails will nonetheless be coated in snow via early July, however a lot of the park is straightforward to get to. Wildlife in Yellowstone is energetic in June because the temperatures are rather less extreme.
Wildlife continues to be out and about in July and August, but it surely’s most energetic throughout the mornings and evenings.
Each Glacier and Yellowstone are two of my favourite parks in your entire nation. The quantity of backcountry land obtainable to discover in every park is in contrast to another park within the decrease 48.
Montana’s backcountry is my favourite place within the United States and easy purposes for backcountry permits offer you every week’s entry to lovely trails, phenomenal wildlife, and nice fishing.
When to Go to Montana For Low cost Costs
For reasonable 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 fuel are decrease throughout the shoulder and off-seasons.
Lodging fills up quick throughout the summer season, however hotels and vacation rentals are eager for bookings throughout the off seasons when costs are closely diminished in comparison with the height season.
Guides, outfitters, and expertise hosts are additionally conscious of the decrease site visitors throughout the offseasons they usually’ll typically provide huge reductions outdoors of months that see extra guests.
Remember that it could take a bit of extra work to seek out outfitters throughout this time as many will nearly shut down throughout the offseasons.
Montana has boomed in recognition up to now 10 years, so costs proceed to rise whatever the time of 12 months. Nevertheless, if you need an opportunity at some extra cheap choices, go to throughout the shoulder and off seasons.
When to Go to Montana For Mountain climbing
Mountain climbing is greatest in Montana from July to September. Montana is greatest to hike when all the trails are almost extensive open and are away from snow. It often takes till mid-July for many trails to utterly clear and plenty of routes throughout the state gained’t ever clear totally, however they’re satisfactory by the point August hits.
Sure, the paths are busy throughout these three months, however the higher climate offers you an opportunity to get out additional away from the crowds.
I like to hike in Red 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 a few of the greatest I’ve ever seen. You need to earn the views, however they’re all the time well worth the effort. There’s nothing fairly like a hike on a distant Montana path in the summertime.
The Greatest Time to Go to Montana By Month
Every month in Montana supplies its personal distinctive climate and adventures. Whereas some months are simpler to go to than others, all of them give guests entry to the wonderful elements of the state. As soon as you recognize 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 common temperature throughout the state is 22 levels Fahrenheit. The state is nearly totally coated in snow, so winter actions are on the forefront of everybody’s thoughts.
At over 5,000 or 6,000 toes elevation, there’s prone to be a number of toes 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, individuals are targeted on snowboarding, snowboarding, snowshoeing, snowmobiling, and ice fishing. The situations are excellent for winter actions all through your entire 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 Massive Sky at the moment – often, after I’ve ice-fished or snowboarded at Big 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 at first of the 12 months.
Climate in Montana in February
The climate in February isn’t totally completely different than the climate in January. The common temperature throughout the state is 27 levels Fahrenheit and snow continues to be a typical incidence.
At greater elevations, temperatures hover across the single digits at evening and the mid-teens or low-20s throughout the day. Snow commonly happens with a few toes of contemporary powder hitting the mountains each few weeks.
Issues To Do in Montana in February
In February, vacationers are both spending their time totally 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 into extra energetic. Canyon Ferry Reservoir close to Helena is without doubt one of the greatest 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 alter 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 into fairly comfy.
At elevations close to 5,000 toes, winter continues to be in drive in March. The most important distinction is that there’ll sometimes be abnormally heat days within the 40s and 50s, however 20-degree days and snow storms will nonetheless commonly happen – winter isn’t carried out 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 your entire 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 risk.
Individuals are beginning to fish within the rivers and streams as a result of warming temperatures at the moment, and you’ll nonetheless go to the mountain cities earlier than they sluggish manner down for the quiet season.
Montana in April
April in Montana is one other sluggish month for tourism and the climate begins to turn into 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 all the time happens. Mountain climbing trails are moist from snowmelt, rivers are starting to fill, and the ski resorts are doubtless closed.
Because of this, most individuals keep at decrease elevations and revel 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 Could
In Could, the vacationer numbers are nonetheless down and the snow runoff is at its peak. The vegetation are starting to bloom and nearly all the pieces is moist.
Climate in Montana in Could
In Could, the climate throughout Montana is way 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 vital melting course of. Remember that Could is a typical time for flooding in Montana.
Issues To Do in Montana in Could
Like April, out of doors actions are a bit extra of a problem. The unpredictable climate and altering situations invite guests to go to a few of the quaint mountain towns as they put together for the height summer season season.
Driving excursions and wildlife excursions are nice in Could. Go to Yellowstone National Park and see the park come to life after a protracted winter.
Montana in June
Peak season in Montana begins in June and nearly all summer season actions can be found for vacationers to get pleasure from.
Climate in Montana in June
The climate in June throughout the state is nearly at its greatest. Temperatures throughout the day are within the mid-70s at decrease elevations and rain isn’t as frequent as it’s throughout April and Could.
At greater elevations, the temperatures are within the high-60s and mid-70s. Every part is starting to dry and turn into way more accessible for adventurers.
Issues To Do in Montana in June
When you gained’t doubtless be summiting any peaks in June, many trails beneath 10,000 toes elevation are way more accessible, and lots of the trails throughout the nationwide parks are accessible.
Runoff has often subsided by June, so fishing is extraordinarily productive. The Salmonfly hatch happens in June, so hit the Gallatin if attainable.
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 often dry.
Within the mountains, July is a superb month. The times are often 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 riding, and climbing are a few of the commonest actions.
Every time I go to in July, I attempt to cowl as many miles on trails as I can. Most of the higher-elevation trails turn into accessible and my eagerness to summit some mountains will increase past perception.
Montana in August
Montana in August is full of vacationers, cool evenings, heat days, and summer season actions at their peak.
Climate in Montana in August
August in Montana is similar to July. The decrease elevations might even see extra temperatures within the 90s, however they’ll get a bit extra rain than in July.
Greater 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 full of summer season actions. A number of the areas which are packed by snow within the winter lastly turn into accessible in August, so hold that in thoughts. Biking, climbing, and hiking are in style actions throughout this time.
Fishing will be sluggish attributable to much less rainfall and hotter temperatures, so be sure you’re out early or within the evenings to have the most effective likelihood.
Montana in September
Montana in September is when vacationers start to go away and all the pieces begins to settle down after a full summer season of thousands and thousands of tourists passing via the state.
Climate in Montana in September
September in Montana is when the temperature variations between high and low elevations turn into huge. At low elevations, temperatures are commonly 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. Do not forget that the mountain storms in September will be intense.
Issues To Do in Montana in September
September is the most effective month to strive all the standard summer season actions in Montana. Nowhere is totally coated by snow and a few of the hottest locations turn into 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 alter colours.
Montana in October
Fall colours and funky temperatures fill the state in October with nearly all summer season actions nonetheless obtainable.
Climate in Montana in October
The climate in October at decrease elevations is often someplace within the 60s and low 70s at first of the month. By the tip, temperatures solely attain into the 50s for highs.
At elevations above 5,000 toes, 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 toes.
Issues To Do in Montana in October
In October, most summer season actions are nonetheless obtainable on the decrease elevations. You gained’t be spending time above 8,000 or 9,000 toes with out seeing snow, however beneath 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 wanting to fatten up earlier than winter totally hits. Try Rock Creek close to Purple Lodge. I all the time have success, right here.
Montana in November
November in Montana is the primary month of winter situations, 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 commonly at elevations above 5,000 or 6,000 toes.
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 skiing can also be extraordinarily in style.
Spend time within the cities and on concrete throughout November. Montana often wants this month to transition into full winter mode.
Montana in December
All winter actions turn into obtainable in December as a result of chilly situations 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 toes. It’s a winter wonderland all over the place you flip within the mountains all through December.
Issues To Do in Montana in December
Snowfall ought 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 manner 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 a protracted day of adventuring.
Selecting the most effective time to go to Montana isn’t all the time the simplest as a result of number of actions obtainable and the climate situations to pay attention to. In the event you actually wish to expertise Montana and all its true magnificence, it’s greatest to go to throughout all 4 seasons. You’ll all the time discover lots to do.
Every time I go to, I discover myself feeling that I like a unique season greatest. Montana has by no means let me down no matter after I go to.