Category Archives: Winter Fun

Must-Stop Family Road-Trip Attractions

There’s nothing quite like loading up the family and embarking on an epic road trip to make some everlasting memories and there’s no place to make those memories better than Montana. From the Bitterroot Valley to Glacier National Park, Western Montana has enough scenic byways for a lifetime of cruising. We love road trips and camping so we partnered with Bretz RV & Marine to bring you a spring camping gear giveaway. So enter to win, load up your RV, chart a route through our charming small towns and make it a point to pull over and check out these fun and unique roadside attractions.

A Hefty Hereford

Stoney’s Bull sits at Clearwater Junction and greets travelers along Highways 200 and 93.

Along Highway 200 at Clearwater Junction, you’ll find a 15-foot-high, 18-foot-long Hereford steer.

50,000 Silver $ Bar

50,000 Silver $ Bar

Stop in St. Regis to visit the infamous 50,000 silver dollar bar, stay for the burgers, shakes and souvenirs.

Stay: Salmon Lake State Park, Clearwater Junction, Big Larch Campground

Flathead Cherries

Flathead Cherries

At 3,000 feet above sea level, Flathead Lake has the perfect growing climate for cherries. Make your way around the largest freshwater lake west of the Mississippi to see the orchards, and be sure to stop at a roadside stand for a taste of this prized fruit.

Stay: Campground St. Regis, Nugget RV Park

Amazing Fun Center

The Amazing Fun Center in Coram, MT

When you’re done exploring Glacier National Park take the kids to the Amazing Fun Center in West Glacier. With a 1.5-mile maze, go karts, bumper boats and mini golf, you won’t leave without being at least a little a-MAZE-d.

Stay: Flathead Lake KOA in Polson, Polson Motorcoach & RV Resort, Edgewater R.V. Resort & Motel in LakesideDiamond S RV Park in Ronan

Seeley Lake

A family docks their boat as the sun sets over Seeley Lake

With easy water access, a walk-up burger joint (Bay Burgers, right on the lake!) and ice cream shops (try a blue-goo swirl cone at The Ice Cream Place), your family will fall in love with this little lake town.

Stay: Seeley Lake Campground

Darby

What road trip is complete without a stop at an old-fashioned candy store? Darby, Montana’s Old West Candy Store is the perfect spot to satisfy your sweet tooth. Don’t miss out on the huckleberry options!

Stay: Travellers Rest Cabins and RV Park

Float the Clark Fork and Ride the Carousel

A Carousel for Missoula

Stop in Missoula to ride one of the fastest carousels in the West. If you’re there on the weekend, be sure to check out one of several farmers markets on Higgins Avenue. Cool off with a scenic float down the Clark Fork River afterwards.

Stay: Jellystone RV Park, Cabins, Campground, Boat & RV Storage, Jim & Mary’s RV Park, Missoula KOA

A couple enjoys their RV stay in Glacier Country

We’ve partnered with Bretz RV & Marine of Missoula to help you on your journey to find these Western Montana roadside gems. Store gear, grill and lounge with this custom camping set perfect for your next adventure.

Enter to win here:

Montana’s Top 5 Backcountry Skiing Tips

It’s the middle of winter, Mother Nature just hit us with some serious snow and, let’s face it, we all have a bit of cabin fever. It’s a good thing Montana’s cold-weather recreation options keep expanding. From miles of groomed trails to acres of untouched terrain, our mountains are waiting for you to come shred some powder. And since we know that planning a vacation can sometimes feel overwhelming, we made a little list to help you out of your winter rut.

1. Cat Skiing for Experts and Amateurs Alike

Photo: Great Northern Powder Guides

If you’re ready for some pristine high-country exploration in our awe-inspiring outdoors, Great Northern Powder Guides out of Whitefish is ready to help you climb more than 10,000 vertical feet into some of Montana’s best backcountry terrain. The fine folks at GNPG tailor their trips to every skill level—from families to seasoned experts—and they also specialize in avalanche safety training, so, rest assured, you’re in good hands. And if you’re looking for an overnight adventure, they offer backcountry yurts for a truly unique on-the-mountain lodging experience.

2. We Ski With a Little Help From Our Friends

Pro skier KC Deane drops powder pillows in the Great Bear Wilderness while internationally famous photographer Chris Burkard looks on. Photo: Devin Schmidt of Glacier Adventure Guides

Our friends at Glacier Adventure Guides are the experts among experts when it comes to backcountry skiing. These self-described “igloo-dwelling powder hounds” are always ready for a wild time, and they aren’t messing around when it comes to keeping you safe. They’re all certified in First Aid and CPR and trained in Outdoor Emergency Care (OEC), mountain travel and rescue, and avalanche awareness. These powder hounds are powder ready, just like our mountains.

3. Ski the Park

While winter in Glacier National Park means fewer lodging options and limited road access, it also means epic backcountry skiing. The National Park Service is our go-to resource for all Glacier National Park safety help. Their website shares safety tips for skiing, snowshoeing, trails and area closure reports. It’s always a good idea to check out avalanche reports and road closures before heading in. See Glacier Country’s Going-to-the-Sun Road status feed here. And when in doubt, ask a ranger! After gathering your safety gear, pick up your backcountry pass and a skiing and snowshoeing brochure from the park headquarters at the Apgar Visitor Center on your way into this backcountry winter wonderland.

4. Something Borrowed

LB Snow, Missoula, MT Photo: David Bosler

Not everyone has all the right gear to face the exhilarating elements and snow-covered landscape of Western Montana, but someone here always has what you need. If you don’t have a great uncle in the backcountry with 70 years of alpine gear in a trunk ready to lend out, try out one of these local rental shops:

5. We’re Here for You

Glacier National Park

We know Glacier Country like the backs of our hands…or gloves (depending on the season), and we’re always checking weather and trail reports because making sure you’re taking advantage of the best backcountry conditions is one of our favorite things to do.

We also love to chat, whether by phone, 1.800.388.5072, or live message, so get in touch anytime Monday – Friday, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m., and let’s plan your Montana backcountry ski adventure together.

Find even more inspiration and enter today for a chance to win monthly prizes in Western Montana’s Glacier Country at glaciermt.com.

Warren Miller + Montana = A Match Made in Winter Heaven

Being a born and raised Montana girl, I know that winter here is pretty special. But I also know that not everyone thinks of Big Sky Country as a winter travel destination, especially when there are so many other places that have great ski scenes, solid snow and multiple resorts to choose from. But I do know that there’s at least one guy who knows that winter in Montana is pretty rad: Warren Miller.

A skier catches air in Western Montana's Glacier Country. Photo: Noah Couser

A skier catches air in Western Montana’s Glacier Country. Photo: Noah Couser

At 90+ years old, Warren is known as one of the most recognizable people in the ski and snow industry and to be honest, he’s got a lot of feathers in his winter-loving hat: he founded Warren Miller Entertainment in 1949, he’s been a filmmaker for 60+ years and he made films for WME for 40+ years. After a several-year hiatus from making films with Warren Miller Entertainment, Warren Miller himself is appearing in this year’s 67th feature film, “Here, There & Everywhere.” And while it’s pretty incredible to have Warren in this year’s movie, what makes it even sweeter is that Montana is one of the locations featured in this year’s film. 

The Montana segment of the movie—which was filmed at Turner Mountain, Whitefish Mountain Resort, Martin City and Seeley Lake—features ski athletes Tyler Ceccanti (read more about Tyler’s love for Montana snow here) and Collin Collins, as well as Montana native and snowmobile athlete Keith Curtis. And from some of the photos the boys sent me from filming in Montana last winter, it looks like they had a blast.

Take a look…

Taking in the view over the Kootenai River near Libby. Photo: WME

Taking in the view over the Kootenai River near Libby. Photo: WME

Night skiing at Whitefish Mountain Resort. Photo: WME

Night skiing at Whitefish Mountain Resort. Photo: WME

Skiing on trails in the backcountry of the Swan Mountains. Photo: WME

Skiing on trails in the backcountry of the Swan Mountains with YurtSki. Photo: WME

Keith Curtis catching air near Seeley Lake. Photo: WME

Keith Curtis riding near Seeley Lake. Photo: WME

This year, Montana is one of the main sponsors of the movie tour which means if you attend one of the movie’s domestic premieres, you can enter to win a customized winter trip for four to Western Montana’s Glacier Country. The film tour will be making various premiere stops in Utah, Oregon, Washington, Colorado, Arizona, California, Nevada, Montana, Wyoming, Idaho, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, Michigan, Virginia, New Jersey, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, Washington D.C., Maryland, Ohio, Maine, Vermont and Alaska. Check out the full schedule here.

And, just in case you can’t make one of the movie’s premiers, you can also enter to win monthly prizes (including a Whitefish Mountain Resort weekend getaway) weekend stay and play package here from October 1, 2016, through February 28, 2017.

xo,
TT

A Biker’s Dream in Montana

You guys, last month I did something I’ve never done before. I went fat biking just outside of Whitefish, Montana. And it was awesome. If you’ve never heard of fat biking, not a worry! It’s basically just riding a normal bike, except one with over-sized tires and wider rims that make it easier to navigate softer terrain, like snow.

Hello handsome.

My handsome fat bike.

For this adventure, I headed out to Whitefish Bike Retreat with some friends of mine where we had the chance to check out the retreat, get fitted for our bikes and be sure we were properly bundled for biking outside. This was my first time to Whitefish Bike Retreat and I have to tell you, I was impressed!

The bunk lodge at Whitefish Bike Retreat.

The bunk lodge at Whitefish Bike Retreat.

Located adjacent to The Whitefish Trail, the retreat offers access to nearby trails, as well as on-site lodging that includes a bunk lodge with private rooms and bunk rooms (where you share a room with someone else), as well as a kitchen, bathroom and living room. Take a look.
Sidenote: in the summer, Whitefish Bike Retreat also offers camping

The retreat is located in a beautiful forested area a short drive from downtown Whitefish.

The retreat is located in a beautiful forested area a short drive from downtown Whitefish.

One of the bunk rooms.

One of the bunk rooms.

One of the private rooms.

One of the private rooms.

I LOVED how Cricket, the owner, decorated the space.

I LOVED how Cricket, the owner, decorated the space.

A cozy reading corner.

Bikes were incorporated into all elements of the bunk lodge. 

After getting acquainted with the space at Whitefish Bike Retreat, we headed out to the Beaver Lakes Trailhead to take our fat bikes for a spin.

My bike at the trailhead.

My bike at the trailhead.

Our gang of biker babes.

Our gang of biker babes.

Biking the trail.

Biking the trail.

Making our way up the road.

Making our way up the road.

Happy bikers.

Happy bikers.

If you want to fat bike in Western Montana, here’s a few things to note:
Whitefish and Missoula are two of the best destinations for fat biking in Glacier Country.
-While you can bring your own bike, you can also rent a fat bike from Glacier Cyclery in Whitefish, Montana, for $45/day.
-If you’re an avid mountain biker, I’d recommend staying at Whitefish Bike Retreat, especially if you’re traveling with friends.

Happy (fat) biking…here’s to seeing you on the trail!

xo,
TT

Take me for a Sleigh Ride (in Montana)

Being from the countryside of Montana, it’s probably no surprise that I’m a big fan of horses and now, seeing as I live in the “city,” I welcome any opportunity to take a horseback ride, wagon ride or sleigh ride. Earlier this month, I headed out to one of my favorite guest ranches (Bar W Guest Ranch near Whitefish) for a snowy sleigh ride behind Dutch and Duke, two beautiful Percheron horses.

Dutch and Duke.

Dutch and Duke.

Upon arriving at Bar W, my traveling buddies and I were greeted with hot chocolate, donuts and a cozy fire in their main lodge.

Donuts = my kind of welcome.

Donuts = my kind of welcome.

Ladies and gents, please meet the best hot chocolate I've had in a long time.

Ladies and gents, please meet the best hot chocolate I’ve had in a long time.

After fueling up my body with hot chocolate (that they let me take on the sleigh ride!), we headed outside to load up the sleigh, say hi to the boys and settle in for a cozy ride in Montana’s fresh mountain air.

Our wranglers? Two cute girls!

Our wranglers? Two cute girls!

These horses have the winter off.

These horses have the winter off.

Take me for a horse-drawn sleigh ride and I'll probably love you forever.

Take me for a horse-drawn sleigh ride and I’ll probably love you forever.

Our tree-lined path.

Our tree-lined path.

A peaceful morning at Bar W Guest Ranch.

A peaceful morning at Bar W Guest Ranch.

If you want to take a sleigh ride in Montana, here’s a few things to keep in mind:
-The sleigh rides at Bar W Guest Ranch are 45 minutes long; be sure you’re bundled up properly (long johns, cozy coat, gloves, boots, hat, etc.).
-Sleigh rides at Bar W are $55/person (kids 3 and under are free) and include hot beverages.
-If you’re visiting Western Montana during the summer months, Bar W also offers horse-drawn wagon rides, a chili dinner ride and full dinner ride. Learn more here.

xo,
TT

Brunch at West Glacier’s Belton Chalet

Truth time: I’ve never been a big brunch girl. To me, breakfast and lunch have always been two separate and distinct meals that weren’t meant to be combined. Plus, I’m the kind of person who can’t possibly eat lunch without already having eaten breakfast (weird, I know). All of this was true until I laid my eyes on the brunch menu at the Belton Chalet in West Glacier, Montana.

Located in West Glacier, the historic Belton Chalet is located just outside Glacier National Park's west entrance.

Located in West Glacier, the historic Belton Chalet is located just outside Glacier National Park’s west entrance.

Hello there, gorgeous.

Hello lover.

Last week, before setting out on a snowshoe excursion in Glacier National Park (you can read more about that herewith my girlfriends, we decided to stop at the Belton Chalet for brunch. And we were not disappointed. Between the four of us, we dined on the crispy tortilla tower (which was amazing), roasted apple bacon griddlecakes, tamales (the special that day) and jumbo cinnamon roll french toast.

Um, yum.

Um, yum.

They also have a bloody mary bar on Sunday mornings.

The Bloody Mary Bar is open for business on Sundays.

These adorable cottages, located on-site, are available for overnight stays year-round.

These adorable cottages, located on-site, are available for overnight stays year-round.

Needless to say, we left with full and totally satisfied.

If you plan to venture to Glacier National Park this winter and want to brunch at the Belton Chalet, here are a few things to note:
-The Belton is open for brunch on Sundays from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. through March 21, 2016.
-Do yourself (and the world) a favor and order the jumbo cinnamon roll french toast. It’s that good.
-Their on-site cottages, Lewis and Clark, as well as the Adobe House are available for overnight accommodations year-round. Plus, they have a few winter getaway packages that include lodge rooms (check those out here). 
-If dinner is more your speed, the Belton is open Fridays and Saturdays from 3 p.m. – 8 p.m., now through March 21, 2016.

Happy brunching!
TT

A winter snowshoe in Montana’s Glacier National Park

Earlier this week, some of my favorite girls and I had a hankering to get outside. As we were brainstorming some ideas on where we could go and what we could do, we started thinking about our backyard playground: Glacier National Park. Of our group, I was the only one who had ever gone snowshoeing in the park (you can read more about that day—which included seeing a bald eagle pluck a fish out of the waters of Lake McDonald—here). And if we’re being honest, that was something that needed to change. So we loaded up the suburban and headed north to spend the day snowshoeing in Glacier National Park.

The obligatory group photo op at the west entrance.

The obligatory group photo op at the west entrance.

After we arrived, our first stop was Apgar. No matter how many times I’ve visited this special place in Montana (with this group and others), I always make sure to take the time to pop into Apgar Village and see the many moods of Lake McDonald.

The clouds created a dramatic scene.

The clouds created a dramatic scene.

The low clouds created a serene, somewhat charming view.

The low clouds created a serene, almost charming view.

En route to Lake McDonald Lodge, the starting point of our snowshoe trek.

En route to Lake McDonald Lodge, the starting point of our snowshoe trek.

After we parked at the lodge (sidenote: check out the most up-to-date road report for the Going-to-the-Sun Road here) and geared ourselves up, we made our way up the road and were quickly surrounded by snow-covered trees, glimpses of mountain peaks and snippets of a beautiful blue sky.

My happy place.

My happy place.

Growing up in the mountains, this scene is like food for my Montana-lovin' soul.

Growing up in the mountains, this scene is like food for my Montana-lovin’ soul.

My work boo (and favorite adventure partner).

My work boo (and one of my favorite adventure partners).

Blue sky is also my boo.

Blue sky is also my boo.

Exploring untouched snow.

Exploring untouched snow.

Taking in the view.

Taking in the view.

Looking up the Going-to-the-Sun Road.

Looking up the Going-to-the-Sun Road.

This family was the cutest.

This family was the cutest.

And sometimes, after a great day in the park, you just need to run (in slow motion) in your snowshoes.

xo,
TT

7 Things to do during Winter in Montana if you don’t ski

Let’s face it: downhill skiing and snowboarding are two of Montana’s favorite winter pastimes. Heck, just in Western Montana’s Glacier Country alone there are six ski areas that have more than 7,000 acres of terrain.

Skiing with a view at Whitefish Mountain Resort. Photo courtesy Brian Schott

Skiing with a view at Whitefish Mountain Resort. Photo: Brian Schott

But while that’s true, in no way do I want you to think that you have to ski when you come to Montana. Because you guys, even though our tree-lined powder-filled runs are awesome, there’s so much more to winter in Big Sky Country.

And in case skiing and snowboarding are not your cup of tea, I’ve rounded up 7 things to do in Western Montana for non-skiers and boarders.

1. Snowmobile on groomed trails. 
While I’m a snowboarder (sidenote: not a great one, although I can sometimes get off the chair lift without crashing now…baby steps, people) and love hitting the mountain for some runs, my true winter love is snowmobiling. To ride the amazing powder in the Swan Mountains, book a tour with Rich Ranch. Or if you’re basing your winter trip out of the Flathead Valley, take a guided tour with Swan Mountain Snowmobiling. Swan Mountain Snowmobiling does tours from a few different trailheads around the valley, but my personal favorite is Canyon Creek.

Snowmobiling north of Columbia Falls, Montana.

Snowmobiling north of Columbia Falls, Montana.

2. Travel at the speed of dog.
There’s nothing quite like dog sledding, especially when you’re cruising across a frozen lake. To try your own hand at yelling “mush,” try a dog sledding tour with Base Camp Bigfork in Bigfork or Dog Sled Adventures and Winter Woods Dog Sled Tours, both in Whitefish.

Dog sledding on Swan Lake.

Dog sledding on Swan Lake.

3. Soak in hot springs. 
My love of hot springs is no secret (read more about one of my favorite hot springs destinations here) and Western Montana’s Glacier Country has a few hot springs that are ideal to visit during the cold winter months. Located in Paradise (I promise that’s the town’s real name), Quinn’s Hot Springs sits along the Clark Fork River on the St. Regis-Paradise Scenic Byway and has a variety of lodging options, including lodge rooms and cabins. Located a bit north of Paradise is Symes Hot Springs Hotel & Mineral Baths in—yep, you guessed it—the community of Hot Springs.

Hello, Paradise.

Hello, Paradise.

4. Take a sleigh ride.
One of the coziest winter activities in Montana is a sleigh ride. Glide across the snow on a sleigh ride at Double Arrow Lodge in Seeley Lake, Bar W Guest Ranch in Whitefish or Black Diamond Guest Ranch in De Borgia.

Take me for a sleigh ride.

A sleigh ride at Bar W Guest Ranch. 

5. Snowshoe in Glacier National Park. 
One of the biggest misconceptions about Montana’s Glacier National Park is that it’s closed during the winter. I’m happy to tell you that the park is open year-round and is a wonderful place to snowshoe. On weekends in late January, February and March, the National Park Service offers ranger-led guided snowshoe walks, while visitors are welcome to snowshoe anytime. Popular places include the shore of Lake McDonald (you can read more about my unforgettable snowshoe and close encounter with a bald eagle in the park here), the trails at Marias Pass and the Going-to-the-Sun Road.

Snowshoeing near Marias Pass in Glacier National Park.

Snowshoeing near Marias Pass in Glacier National Park.

6. Ride a fat bike. 
A winter activity that’s growing in popularity, fat biking include riding a bike with oversized tires that make it easy for the rider to move across the snow. One of the best places in the Flathead Valley to tackle fat biking is at Whitefish Bike Retreat. Situated along the Whitefish Trail, the bike retreat also has lodging options. Meanwhile in the southern end of Glacier Country, Missoula Bicycle Works has a variety of fat bikes for rent with plenty of riding destinations, including Blue Mountain Recreation Area.

Fat biking along Whitefish Lake. Photo courtesy Jessica Downing

Fat biking along Whitefish Lake. Photo: Jessica Downing

7. Take a brewery tour. 
Western Montana’s brewery industry continues to grow and the region is now home to 22 breweries. Tap Room Tours offers guided brewery tours in Missoula and the Bitterroot Valley.

A behind-the-scenes peek into Montana's breweries.

A behind-the-scenes peek into Montana’s breweries.

Happy winter, you little snow bunnies!

xo,
TT

14 Must-See Holiday Events and Happenings in Western Montana

The holiday season is officially underway in Western Montana’s Glacier Country. And as someone who loves Christmas (you can read more about my obsession with all things Christmas as well as my top picks for made in Montana gifts here), I feel like it’s my elfly duty to let you know about all of the holiday happenings taking place in Big Sky Country.

Whitefish, Montana decks its halls for the holidays.

Whitefish, Montana decks the halls for the holidays. Photo courtesy Brian Schott.

Here’s a look at 14 of Montana’s must-see events taking place this December.

1. Carriage Rides in Downtown Missoula.
Head to E. Pine Street in Missoula from 11 a.m. – 4 p.m. on Saturday and Sundays (now through December 20) for free carriage rides, courtesy of The Resort at Paws Up.

These two beauties give carriage rides in downtown Missoula. Photo courtesy Taylar Robbins.

These two beauties give carriage rides in downtown Missoula. Photo courtesy Taylar Robbins.

2. Whitefish Christmas Stroll.
The cute mountain resort town of Whitefish decks its halls for the holiday season, with their Christmas Stroll really kicking off the festivities. Held from 4 p.m. – 9 p.m. on Friday, December 11, the Whitefish Christmas Stroll features concerts, a tree lighting ceremony, Santa (who arrives in a wagon because Montana) and wagon rides from Bar W Guest Ranch.

3. Christmas in Bigfork. 
Located on the bay of Flathead Lake, the cute village of Bigfork goes all out for Christmas. Two days to note: Saturday, December 12 and Saturday, December 19. On those days, Santa comes to Bigfork, along with carolers in downtown, free live music and live theater with “A Totally Awesome Christmas Carol” at the Bigfork Center for Performing Arts.

Twinkling lights in downtown Bigfork.

Twinkling lights in downtown Bigfork.

4. Santa at Missoula’s Southgate Mall + Holiday Performances.
Southgate Mall, the region’s largest shopping center, gets into the holiday spirit with photos with Old St. Nick, as well as a gingerbread house contest display and holiday performances. For a complete rundown of happenings at the mall, visit www.shopsouthgate.com.

5. Treasure State Chorale Christmas Concert at the Historic St. Ignatius Mission. 
One of the most beautiful churches in the state, the St. Ignatius Mission will host a Christmas Concert on Saturday, December 12 as the the Treasure State Chorale performs the Christmas Story.

The St. Ignatius Mission.

The St. Ignatius Mission.

6. Lantern Tours at the Historial Museum at Fort Missoula.
The Historical Museum at Fort Missoula will offer guided lantern tours Friday, December 11 – Sunday, December 13. The tours will provide a look into past winters (complete with plenty of Christmas moments) and will end with cocoa and cookies. Call 406.728.3476 (extension 1) to purchase tickets.

7. Guided Christmas Tours at Kalispell’s Conrad Mansion.
The home of one of Kalispell’s founders, Charles Conrad, is completely decked out in Christmas decorations during December and the mansion offers tours every Friday and Saturday (at 11 a.m., 1 p.m. and 3 p.m.) through December 26.

Christmas at the Conrad.

Christmas at the Conrad.

8. Christmas Light Trolley Tours in Kalispell.
Hop aboard a cozy trolley and set out to view the holiday lights in Kalispell with Montana Trolley Co. Tours are offered from December 12 – December 28. Click here for specific dates, times and additional info.

9. Christmas in Hamilton. 
Celebrate the season in downtown Hamilton on Tuesday, December 15, with a visit from Santa and Parade of Lights.

10. Handel’s Messiah with Glacier Symphony + Chorale.
A popular holiday tradition, the Glacier Symphony and Chorale will perform Handel’s Messiah in Bigfork (December 11), Whitefish (December 12) and Kalispell (December 13).

11. Yuletide Affair 12 at Alpine Theatre Project.
A tradition in the Flathead Valley, this year’s Yuletide Affair will feature Broadway talent, including David Ackroyd and Luke Walrath. Performances are at 7 p.m. on Sunday, December 20 and Monday, December 21. You can snag tickets here.

12. The Nutcracker in Missoula. 
A holiday tradition, Montana’s Garden City Ballet will perform The Nutcracker. Performances take place Friday, December 18 – Sunday, December 20.

13. Christmas Eve Torchlight Parade at Whitefish Mountain Resort.
A Christmas Eve tradition, every year Santa comes to the slopes of Whitefish Mountain Resort where he leads a torchlight parade on snow-covered Big Mountain. An added bonus: Santa gives out gifts in Ed and Mully’s after the parade.

14. New Year’s Eve in Polson. 
Plan to spend New Year’s Eve with dinner and dancing at Western Montana’s newest hotel, Red Lion Ridgewater Inn & Suites Polson.

You can also check out a full listing of holiday events at www.glaciermt.com/events.php.

Wishing you all a joy-filled holiday season!

xo,
TT

A Winter Weekend in Montana’s Glacier National Park

There are a few things that I know—without a shadow of a doubt—to be true. One such truth is that Glacier National Park is magic. While most visitors to the park come during the summer season, Glacier National Park is open year-round and winter provides a completely different (and serenely peaceful) experience in the Crown of the Continent. This past weekend, I was able to sneak in a getaway to one of the most beautiful places in the world and it did not disappoint.

Take a look…

Lake McDonald on a perfectly morning.

Lake McDonald on a perfect winter morning.

A frost-covered dock + some of the most photographed peaks in Montana.

A frost-covered dock + some of the most photographed peaks in Montana.

A picture perfect view.

A picture perfect view.

Glacier National Park requires a group selfie.

Glacier National Park requires a group selfie.

The Going-to-the-Sun Road is open for traffic to Lake McDonald Lodge (11.5 miles from West Glacier).

The Going-to-the-Sun Road is open for traffic to Lake McDonald Lodge (11.5 miles from West Glacier).

And since I had such an amazing weekend exploring Glacier National Park, I wanted to make it easy for you to enjoy the park this winter. So, I’ve rounded up my top recommendations for winter fun.

Take a Drive
On the west side, cruise up to Lake McDonald Lodge from West Glacier. It’s one of the only times of year that you’ll see just a handful of cars on the Going-to-the-Sun Road. Additional recommended drives include Highway 2 between West Glacier and East Glacier Park, as well as the North Fork Road between Columbia Falls and Polebridge.

Cross-country Ski, Snowshoe or Walk 
With the Camas Road and much of the Going-to-the-Sun Road being closed to vehicular traffic, both of those roads are ideal for walking, snowshoeing or cross-country skiing. The park also has numerous trails for enjoying its winter wonderland.

Fill Your Tummy
For one of the best brunches in Montana, fuel your body at The Belton Chalet in West Glacier. Chef Melissa whips up an array of brunch options on Sunday mornings. And if you’re looking for a prime lunch or dinner spot, dine at The Izaak Walton Inn in Essex. Side note: It’s imperative that you save room for the huckleberry cobbler. Trust me. 

Spend the Night
To really be able to soak up the beauty of Glacier National Park in the winter, it’s best to spend at least one night. Recommended accommodations include the Historic Tamarack Lodge in Hungry Horse, The Belton Chalet in West Glacier (lodge rooms are open every Saturday night) and the Izaak Walton Inn in Essex.

Happy exploring!
TT

PS: Be sure to hashtag your photos on twitter and instagram with #GlacierMT so I can keep up with your adventures!