How to Prepare for Your Visit to Montana in Winter


Montana winters are a magical time, filled with flurries and bluebird powder days, not to mention fewer crowds and snow-capped winter scenery. It’s a great time to visit, and you can come prepared when you keep these tips in mind.

There’s No Bad Weather, Only Bad Gear

Winter in Montana is known for epic powder, unpredictable low temperatures, winter storms, and wild weather. But areas like Bozeman have record-setting numbers of sunny days, too. It’s best to come prepared for just about anything, and one of the keys is packing plenty of layers.

Be ready to keep yourself warm from head to toe, including wool socks, warm gloves, and a cozy hat. And if you plan on enjoying some outdoor adventures, always bring backup layers with you in your pack. Check the weather, prepare based on the report, and then bring a little extra along too, because you never know what might happen!

Know What Will Be Open and Closed

One of the biggest benefits of visiting Montana in winter is beating the summer crowds and having this wild wonderland all to yourself. Just remember, visiting outside of peak season means that some businesses and services may be closed for the winter months. If you have an idea of a specific activity you want to try or a restaurant you’re dying to dine at, double-check to make sure they’re open year-round. You can find out more about Highline Adventures’s year-round accommodation options here.

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Pack Your Mask and Hand Sanitizer

Many people see a trip to Montana as a getaway from what’s going on in the rest of the world, and it absolutely is! But COVID-19 is here too, so you’ll want to remember to pack your mask and hand sanitizer, and check on local restrictions and safety measures. Expect services to be disrupted or different, and plan ahead, so you’re prepared for the current situation. The good news is, you can be sure that there’s a whole lot of fresh air and spirit-lifting fun here in the Treasure State.

Plan Ahead, But Prepare To Be Flexible

Even as you plan ahead, expect to be flexible. Whether for COVID or winter weather, travels in Montana during the winter months (or at any time of year!) can be unpredictable. If you go into your trip with a spirit of enjoying the adventure and making the best of whatever comes your way, then you can’t go wrong.

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Pick Your Transportation Wisely

If you’ve never driven in winter weather before, you may want to explore your transportation options before buckling up and steering into a blizzard. Big Sky resort has bus service from Bozeman, and much of downtown Bozeman is incredibly walkable, complemented by ridesharing apps like Uber and Lyft serving town.

If you have some experience behind the wheel in wintery conditions, make sure you know what vehicle you’re picking up when you head to the rental counter. Remember that there are still a lot of areas in Montana where there’s no cell service, so plan accordingly with a car emergency kit in your trunk. Map out your adventure route in advance, and then get out there for some Montana winter fun!

For more info on planning a wild winter trip to Montana, visit the rest of the Highline Adventures blog.