All photos courtesy of Visit Montana.
Montana clocks in at over 140 million acres and is the fourth largest state in the union. With over two dozen well-known fly-fishing waters and home to plenty of beautiful and wild trout, anglers the world-over know Montana’s great fly fishing.
But, we are also home to some great activities for non-anglers.
With our exciting range of activities for non-anglers, it is also important to understand just how big Montana is—when considering non-angling activities, do some research to learn the proximity of one activity to another or where you may expect to be your home base for your Montana fly fishing trip. Things may not always be an easy down-the-road experience and may require additional logistics. When in doubt, contact us at Yellow Dog Flyfishing Adventures to help plan your Montana travel.
Home to more than 100 mountain ranges, Montana has abundant hiking opportunities. From an easy mile-long hike to a secluded waterfall to a leg-burning climb to a peak with breathtaking views, there are hikes for all abilities and ages. Visit any of the following sites for more information, or you can always inquire locally with one of Yellow Dog Flyfishing Adventures destinations.
2. Horseback Riding
Saddle up and enjoy Montana’s views from the back of a horse. Many of our chosen destinations can recommend, and possibly even book, a short or long ride during your stay while the anglers are out fishing.
3. Big Sky Resort
Its reputation as a world-class ski area is certainly deserved, but they also offer a wide-array of summer-time activities. Zip-lining, chair-access mountain biking, and more is a great day of adventure while everyone else is off fishing. Located within an hour of Bozeman, Big Sky this is an easy day trip.
4. Shopping, Spas, Art Galleries, and Active Pursuits
Bozeman and Missoula are vibrant towns with thriving local economies. Locals in these towns enjoy a variety of boutique shops, full service spas and massage therapists, western and contemporary art galleries, and a diverse selection of yoga and Pilates offerings.
Home to dozens of scenic, challenging or user-friendly public and private courses, any golfer would enjoy a trip to Montana. From courses with views of the peaks of Glacier National Park to courses adjacent to the Yellowstone River, golfing in Montana is a great option for the non-angler in your crew.
6. Whitewater Rafting
Near most areas of Montana that have great fly fishing, there is a river that offers some exciting whitewater rafting. Montana’s rivers are not only great for fly fishing, with our variety of rivers a non-angling companion is never far from a fun non-fishing river experience. Here are a few of Montana’s whitewater options.
Yellowstone River near Yellowstone National Park.
Alberton Gorge on the Clark Fork near Missoula.
The Kootenai River near Libby.
The Middle Fork of the Flathead River near Glacier National Park.
The north slope of the Beartooth Mountains Stillwater River near Red Lodge.
7. Museums and Historical Sites
Before there were drift boats bobbing along Montana’s rivers, tribes of Native Americans lived and hunted. Before that dinosaurs roamed the hillsides. More recently Lewis and Clark, cowboys, miners, cattle barons, and more have left their mark on the Treasure State. Non-anglers can enjoy many of our museums and historical sites.
Museum of the Rockies near Bozeman. Home to the region’s largest dinosaur display this is also a great spot for kids.
The Lewis and Clark National Historic Trail Interpretive Center. Located on a majestic bluff overlooking the Missouri River near Great Falls, Montana, this is a must-see for anyone interested in the journey of Lewis and Clark.
Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument. Near the Bighorn River in eastern Montana, Memorializing the site where the US Army’s 7th Cavalry clashed with Lakota and Cheyenne warriors.
The Richest Hill on Earth near Butte. $48 billion worth of copper, gold, and silver were mined out of the mountainside.
8. Yellowstone National Park
As the world’s first national park, Yellowstone National Park is home to unique hydrothermal wonders. It is also an important sanctuary for hundreds of species of wildlife and birds. Yellowstone saw over 4 million visitors in 2018, however, nearly all of them stayed within one mile of the nearest road.
9. Glacier National Park
Home to over 700 miles of trails and pristine forests, alpine meadows, rugged mountains, and spectacular lakes, Glacier National Park is a hiker’s delight.
10. Mountain Biking
Hundreds of miles of trails can be accessed from Montana’s towns. Because of this, non-anglers wanting to try some “fat-tire” action can rent a bike or hire a mountain biking guide to explore some of Montana’s off-the-pavement adventures.
Montana is part of several professional rodeo circuits. Beginning in late May and running through much of September, nonanglers can enjoy a unique blend of outdoor entertainment as they enjoy watching cowboys and cowgirls compete for the nightly prize money.
Montana’s nickname is the Big Sky State. If the number of activities for non-anglers is any indication, the nickname is appropriate. Whether for a day or a week, non-anglers can enjoy a wide array of options while anglers are out pursuing wild and native trout.
Contact us today to begin planning or to learn more.
All photos courtesy of Visit Montana.