Disclosure: This post about Montana State Parks is sponsored. As always, all opinions are my own (plus you can win cool stuff…keep reading!).
Montana is one of those states that I never visited when I lived in the US mostly because it was FAR from where I lived. Texas and Alabama are not that close. Now, though, Montana is quite close to Alberta and it is a really cool place to visit. In fact, we are headed there as part of our epic RV adventure of the US in September. We are getting to leave a bit earlier so we will get to spend some much appreciated time in Montana. First on our list of places to explore? Montana State Parks!
Did you know that Montana has a Non-Resident State Park Pass that allows you free entrance for an unlimited number of visits to any Montana Park for one year PLUS discounted camping rates? Me neither but I am totally getting one! For just $35 US, that is a great deal especially if you plan to visit often (and why wouldn’t you?). The discounts on camping can really add up too. Check out the different rates for camping with and without the pass. Keep reading for all the details of how you could win one!
Now for 5 Montana State Parks that you MUST visit…
Lewis and Clark Caverns State Park – Evan and I love to visit caves. Cave tours run from the beginning of May through the end of September while the campgrounds and park are open all year.
Bannack State Park – Remember what the Wild West was like while you stroll through the streets of one of the best preserved ghost towns in all of the US. This was the site of Montana’s first gold strike on July 28, 1862. As with so many gold rush towns, the population swelled to over 3000 and then dwindled over the years. Now you can visit, see how gold rushers lived and maybe even pan for a little gold (activity available during the summer).
Giant Springs State Park – Over 300,000 visitors can’t be wrong…as one of the largest fresh water springs in the US, this is a gorgeous place to visit. This spring was discovered by the Lewis & Clark Expedition in 1805. The water stays at 54 degrees all year round making it an interesting place to visit no matter the season. In fact, winter may be an even better time since the warmth of the water in contrast to the temperature of the air means that water vapor makes the surrounding landscape into ice sculptures. Also visit the Great Falls and the Giant Springs Fish Hatchery while you are there.
Flathead Lake – Flathead Lake is the largest natural freshwater lake that is West of the Mississippi in the lower 48 states. Visitors can enjoy boating, swimming, camping and more.
Makoshika – Makoshika gets it’s name from a Lakota word for bad lands. The badlands of Makoshika are part of the Montana Dinosaur Trail as the lands hold fossilized dinosaurs such as the Tyrannosaurus Rex and the Triceratops. Don’t miss the triceratops skull and interpretive displays in the Visitor’s Center.
Want more ideas of what to do on your trip to Montana? Head over to the Visit Montana site. They have tons of information no matter what kind of adventure you are looking for as well as information like how to get there, where to eat and where to stay.