Bannack Montana Ghost TownBannack, Montana is known for its ghost towns which is located in Beaverhead County. The town was created in 1862 and named after the local Indians. Major gold was discovered in the area during the same time. The town served as the capitol of the MT territory a few years later.

The MT mining town held population of around ten thousand at one time, although the area was quite remote. The MT Trail connected the town to the “rest of the world.” Several hotels existed along with blacksmith shops, stables, meat markets, a grocer, and saloons.

History holds the town was soon run by Plummer’s gang which brought much grief to the area. Due to the lack of official records, the story is disputed by historians studying the past events. Some say over twenty men were accused of their crimes, given an informal trial, and hung for punishment.

Historical structures still reside in the relevant Montana ghost town to this day. The area is known as the Bannack Historic District and many people visit the area attraction. Normally, once a  year Bannack Days are held to revive the history which unfolded during the older days, in the form of reenactment.

Have you visit the ghost town of Bannack, Montana? Did you sense the history which took place there many years ago? What would you recommend to others visiting the area? Please leave your comments below on the Big Sky Blog!

Photo Information: This photo is provided by and given credit to pattys photos – on Flickr.com with permission via Creative Commons Licensing.

Dinosaur Art Glendive MTFrontier Gateway Museum is located in Glendive, Montana. The museum offers free admission to visitors and provides a unique experience for visitors. Tourists will view blacksmith equipment, country stores, a historical school, see log cabins, wagons, and more.

The Golden Valley School was used in the early 1900s. Visitors will actually see some of the original furniture used during this time.  The very first log cabin used in the city is also on display; the building was also used as a post office at one time. The cabin also holds items which were used in that time period.

Outside displays are set up for visitors to enjoy as well as indoor displays. Indoor displays include dress displays, uniforms from military personnel, musical displays, sewing displays, and armor. A basement houses recreation items of early shops including the Bee Hive Store and the Douglas Meed general store.

The museum offers an acre of land which houses seven different buildings. Each building offers insights into prehistoric times through the years. Display categories include Native American  History, Railroad History, Millinery History, Fossils, as well as Photography (just to name a few).

Frontier Gateway Museum is just one museum to add to your list of places to see in Montana. History is richly preserved throughout the state. Tourists and visitors enjoy not only the view of Montana skies, but the history which speaks of days past!

Photo Information: This photo is provided by and given credit to Tim Evanson – on Flickr.com with permission via Creative Commons Licensing.

Montana Back RoadsMontana is a state which is rich with history and there are plenty of places to learn more about the past. Most of the museums, if not all of them, are nonprofit organizations which have a focus on preserving history through cultural collections, antiques, artistic exhibits, and much more.

Paleontology museums are of great number in Montana which hold collections of items found within the state boundaries. The Blaine County Museum is located in Chinook in the North Central region and is on the Dinosaur Trail.

Although educational programs and guided tours are not offered, this museum is full of information for visitors. The museum offers twelve Judith River Formation exhibits as well as fossils from the area. Invertebrates from the ancient ocean are also available for view.

A special room is available for visitors where fossils can be handled. The “Look, Touch, Wonder” room holds fossils of sea creatures, dinosaurs, as well as various plants. Next time you look upon the horizon in the fields of Montana, your view of life in times past will be forever changed.

Blaine County Museum offers a family friendly option when touring Montana museums on your next trip to the area. Museums offer a new view on how things once existed in the world and offer a great time to bond with children while teaching them history. There are also plenty of other things to see and do during nearly any season of the month in Montana!

Have you visited Blaine County Museum? What were your thoughts and impressions? We would love to hear on the Big Sky Blog!

Photo Information: This photo is provided by and given credit to Nomadic Lass – on Flickr.com with permission via Creative Commons Licensing.

Montana FenceVisiting Montana is a pleasure and provides plenty of places to take walks with family and friends. The country of Montana offers a spectacular view especially during the warmer months of the year. Although summer festivities are decreasing in Montana, the Fall season still offers plenty of exploring opportunities.

Many MT areas offer serene fields, views of wildflowers, images of wildlife in the Big Sky Country. Individuals who enjoy getting out in the great outdoors are sure to enjoy walking, or even hiking, excursions in the state.

Walking excursions in MT offer individuals the ability to get away and enjoy the view. They also enjoy the health benefits which come along with taking time to walk or hike through MT trails.

A host of public parks are available in Montana, many with paved walking tracks along with places to rest along the way. State Parks are another great place to get out on foot and enjoy the fresh air. Neighborhood stations are also present in many cities which provide visitors places of rest during scenic daytrips.

Outdoor shopping is also available in many of Montana’s popular towns. Individuals can take the time to walk and window shop at the same time. One of the best things about taking walking daytrips in the Montana cities and towns is the downhome hospitality encountered.

Do you have a special place in Montana you enjoy for walking or hiking trips? Why would you recommend it to others? We would love to hear from Big Sky Blog readers!

Photo Information: This photo is provided by and given credit to Nomadic Lass – on Flickr.com with permission via Creative Commons Licensing.

Amtrack MT Empire BuilderTrails & Rails offers an innovative program through partnership. The National Park Service along with Amtrak provides educational experiences for passengers on the rail. The experience includes providing passengers with an appreciation of culture and the Montana’s area of beauty.

Passengers have access to connect through different public lands while learning about the importance of preservation. Educational points are also included regarding how to protect the area of natural resources for the public to enjoy (as well as the wildlife) for years to come.

The Trails & Rails program provides a family friendly as well as an environmentally safe way to travel across northern Montana. Podcasts are also provided on certain train routes within the system. The podcasts serve as a way to enhance the individual’s experience while providing guidance for traveling.

Volunteers help make the Trails & Rails program successful and continuous. In 2013, there were over 560 volunteers directly involved with the educational program. These individuals donated over 66,000 hours, while over 470,000 passengers participated. Likewise, over 2,500 programs through Trails & Rails were offered during the year.

Have you participated in the Trails & Rails program while passing through northern Montana? Did you learn about the importance of preservation and protection of MT resources? Did you children enjoy the experience as well? Big Sky Blog would like to hear your comments and suggestions!

Photo Information: This photo is provided by and given credit to Loco Steve – on Flickr.com with permission via Creative Commons Licensing.

Montana SunMontana has so much to offer, especially when desiring scenic drives through the area. There are many known routes which bring much to the senses. If you enjoy the dramatic, breathtaking views then consider one or more MT scenic options.

Beartooth Pass is a very popular tourist scenic drive as well as Clyde Park, Gallatin Canyon, and Paradise Valley. Yellowstone National Park also offers a spectacular view with many different options. MT scenic drives can be on the main routes, or side trips are popular as well.

The mountains, lakes, and forest areas are a photographer’s dream. Even those who know little about photography desire to capture the view the best they can. Scenic drives can be taken through the different seasons, bringing different experiences to the family ride.

Do you enjoy getting out and taking a nice ride with the family? Then, consider taking a scenic tour of the Montana area with family, or friends! There will be no regrets when it comes to taking in the beauty of the area!

Have you taken the time to enjoy a scenic drive through the Montana Mountains? Which area did you enjoy the most? Do you have a high recommendation for Big Sky Blog readers? Please let us know your thoughts! We would love to hear and share with our readers!

Photo Information: This photo is provided by and given credit to Julia Manzerova – on Flickr.com with permission via Creative Commons Licensing.

Montana in the FallMontana is a great place to visit year round, but during the Fall season it is a beautiful time to experience the area. Although the hues of green disappear, the colors of Fall begin to shine through. Golden colors appear on tree including the cottonwoods, aspens, and tamaracks.

The number of visitors to the area also decreases making the time of year a more quiet and serene time to experience it. Pricing for various activities as well as lodging expenses also decrease allowing a family to get more out of their travel budget.

Down home hospitality does not change in Montana with the changes of seasons. The people are friendly and down to earth year round. Visiting Montana in the Fall time is a nice family get away and there is no rush to enjoy all the area has to offer.

Glacier National Park is open every month of the year and it is the perfect time to walk the trails, do fall camping, enjoy the stunning scenery, and to enjoy time with the family.  Missoula is also a nice fall time destination via Glacier Country. Access to the area is easy and many individuals also enjoy fall biking excursions.

Have you visited Montana in the Fall season? What was your most favorite thing to do during the cooler, colorful time of year? Please leave your comments here on the Big Sky Blog!

Photo Information: This photo is provided by and given credit to Loco Steve – on Flickr.com with permission via Creative Commons Licensing.

Montana GrasslandsThe Montana grasslands offer protection to some of the most endangered animals and birds. The plains are blanketed with mixed native grasses which give support to many species. Mountain Plovers and Burrowing Owls are included in this habitat as well as Chestnut Collared Longspurs.

The prairies of Montana are also home to long migrations of the pronghorns which are one of the quickest mammals known on earth. The follow closely behind the speed of cheetahs. The grasslands of Montana also provide homes to some of the rarest species including the prairie dogs (black tail), as well as the ferret (black footed). This ferret is also known as one of the scarcest mammals in North America.

Conservation methods are important to saving the grasslands of MT which are still existent. Protection of the land is detriment to the survival of these endangered animals. Uniquely, the use of cattle is one of the best tools available to help protect the grasslands.

Cattle grazing on the grasslands of MT help increase the pliability of the land and improves the health of the prairies. Other tools are used to help preserve the plains of MT including strategic measures and preserving a necessary blend of habitat.

Understanding the importance of grassland conservations brings new meaning while visiting the area. One can truly appreciate the scope of protections put into place through the grasslands of Montana.

What are your personal thoughts about preserving the grasslands to help protect the endangered animals in the state of Montana? Please leave your comments below. We would love to hear from Big Sky Blog readers.

Photo Information: This photo is provided by and given credit to Kevin Dooley – on Flickr.com with permission via Creative Commons Licensing.

Vananda MontanaVananda is a small town located in Montana which began as a station stop in the early 1900s. The station was created as a stop while railroads were constructed through the area. During the 1920s, the town of Vananda, MT consisted of a bank and a schoolhouse in the beginning. The town did see some growth but struggled to exist.

The arid lands of Vananda, Montana were difficult for farmers to grow and harvest on. Three years into the endeavor to create farmlands, the bank closed its doors. The location was turned into a post office which continued to operate for approximately twenty five years. During the early 1980s, the railroad in this area was uninhibited.

Although, Vananda has seen hard times it is listed on the National Register of Historical Places. Visitors to the area can still see the schoolhouse sitting on the hill which provides a promise past for the town’s hopeful existence.

Vananda, Montana is located along Highway 12; the town was once considered lost but now is found in the historical beginnings of the state. If you are visiting near Vananda, consider taking some time to view the area and reflect on the historical beginnings of the town.

Have you visited the Vananda area of MT? Where you able to see the schoolhouse which sits on the hill? Please leave your comments here on the Big Sky Blog!

Photo Information: This photo is provided by and given credit to Ins1122 – on Flickr.com with permission via Creative Commons Licensing.

Montana Mountain ShadowsMontana is full of exquisite beauty all around including outstanding mountain ranges and many prairie lands. Within the state are stunning forests and clear running streams of water. The wildlife in MT is abundant and a naturalists dream.

Montana moved into statehood in the 1800s and the area held many Indian tribes. In the early days as well as current times, there is plenty of room to roam around and enjoy the land. When tourists and visitors come to Montana, they are in awe of the scenes they experience.

In the eastern portion of the state, a large number of rolling hills are present. Grasslands are dominant and farms are located nearby. Cattle ranches are common in this area of Montana which is a way of life to the folks living there.

In the western portion of MT, many see the exquisite beauty of the surrounding mountains. The scene changes from season to season. The mountains are capped with heavy snow during the colder months of the year. Montana state parks are an attraction to so many due to all the area has to offer.

Montana holds historical as well as cultural values. The cities speak of past and present through current townships as well as historical museums as well as memorable attractions. Individuals who enjoy learning of the past and present thoroughly enjoy their time.

Great outdoorsmen and women can also enjoy many natural features while visiting MT including photography of wildlife, hunting excursions, fishing trips, hiking, and much more. Camping is a very popular occurrence through Montana as well as skiing, snowboarding, and recreations.

Montana is full of beauty and many opportunities for those who come to visit the area. Residents who live in MT fully enjoy all the state has to offer.

Have you visited Montana recently? What area did you visit and how did you like it? What do you recommend to those interested in visiting the state? Please leave your comments here on the Big Sky Blog!

Photo Information: This photo is provided by and given credit to Loren Kerns – on Flickr.com with permission via Creative Commons Licensing.


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