Summer Days are Drifting Away…

7 Ways to Spend Summer in Southwest Montana

You guys. The sun is out. The rivers are finally floatable. The air is incredibly breathable. It’s time to spend every available free moment outside. Unless you work in the sun all day and what you really want is to relax with some climate control … either way we’ve got you covered.

Float the Rivers

Need we say more? It’s hot, it’s sunny, and the rivers are down to a manageable level. Whether you’re looking for a lazy afternoon of tubing, or adrenaline-soaked rapids, Southwest Montana rivers have you covered. For up-to-date river information, check out Montana Troutfitters, which actually gives fishing reports, but is helpful for floaters as well.

Fish the Rivers

I don’t want to brag, but we’re kind of famous for our fishing. Seriously, the Madison, the Big Hole, the Blackfoot, the Missouri, the Beaverhead…our amazing rivers go on and on. Again, check out the river reports from Montana Troutfitters. Or our blog on Blue Ribbon Fishing.

Laugh Out Loud at a Historic Theater

Also potentially cry, be startled, and feel other emotions as well. The Philipsburg Opera House is running two great plays and a Vaudeville show all summer, the Virginia City Players have a Vaudeville show and “Jekyll and Hyde” running in August, the Grandstreet is playing “Newsies,” and the Brewery Follies are serving up their own brand of…sketch comedy/cabaret/hilarity (that is sure to embarrass a teenager attending with their grandparents).

Get through your week with live music

Visit the Staggering Ox for bluegrass jam sessions every Tuesday, head to downtown Helena for Alive @ 5 on Wednesdays at, you guessed it, 5:00pm, hang around Helena for Out to Lunch every Thursday, swing over to Anaconda on Friday for Alive after Five (starting just after 5:00), and check out On Broadway and the Bale of Hay.

Go to a Cave

Specifically Lewis and Clark Caverns. They’re cool, and dark, and pleasant. The Park also runs Saturdays with a Naturalist, and Friday evening Ranger talks.

Go to a Massive Music Festival

Rockin the Rivers near Cardwell, and An Ri Ra Irish Festival in Butte feature very different but equally incredible musical experiences, with live bands galore that’ll knock your socks off.

Mountain Biking in Helena, MT

Hit the trails

Preferably with your feet or tires, not necessarily the rest of you. Seriously, there are so many hiking and biking opportunities in Southwest Montana that they really deserve their own top twenty lists. For incredible hiking, hit up one of our Wilderness Areas, State Parks, or head to a National Forest. Ditto for biking (although, not in Wilderness Areas), and we’ve been carving out a name for ourselves as an incredible mountain biking destination.


But that’s just the start of SWMT summer (we didn’t even get in to the breweries, brew fests, and art shows). Check out our events page for a full listing. What do you do to relish the sun in Southwest Montana?

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