Montana’s Scenic Driving Routes
Montana’s breath-taking scenery lends itself well to long road trips. From spectacular high-altitude adventures and leisure drives, to amazing badlands vista, you are sure to be impressed along your journey. Choose one of these routes, prepare your RV, and go!
Glacier Country: Skalkaho Highway
The Skalkaho Highway may not be for the faint of heart. It is a twisting, winding thrill ride of a drive on a dirt road that goes right through the heart of the Sapphire Mountains. It is a 54-mile seasonal road that typically opens on Memorial Day and closes in November, when the snow blocks the road for the season. It connects the town of Hamilton in the Bitterroot valley and continues all the way to the historic mining town of Phillipsburg.
Wanting to elevate your Instagram game? Share the views of Skalkaho Falls, Skalkaho Pass, and all the thrilling twists and turns in between. Keep in mind that cars aren’t the only travelers on the road. Moose, deer, and all sorts of critters also use the passage. Keep an eye out for this beautiful wildlife.
Yellowstone Country: Beartooth Highway
If you want to feel on top of the world then the Beartooth Highway is the route for you. It is the highest elevation highway in the northern Rockies, making views and vista endless. The Beartooth Highway starts at 6,4000 ft, just south of Red Lodge, and traverses 68 miles southwest before corkscrewing to Cooke-City-Silver Gate, Montana. This will also conveniently leave you right near the entrance of the Yellowstone National Park for even more spectacular views.
This legendary drive will take you through amazing scenic views, including 20 snow-capped peaks, glaciers, alpine lakes, and dense forests. You might even run into a mountain goat or two! This road is seasonal – from Memorial Day through mid-October. Prep your vehicle and RV now for this epic journey!
Southeast Montana: North Dakota Border to Billings
If you are looking to get in touch with Montana’s rich heritage, then the drive from the North Dakota border to Billings is for you. While making stops along the way, you can dig into Montana’s dino history and all the Native American Heritage sites along this 607-mile drive. Start in Wibaux and head south on MT-7 to the sandstone pillars of Medicine Rock State Park. This park is amazing for RV overnight stops as it is home to some otherworldly rock formations. RV spots are first-come, first-serve.
Spend the morning exploring the park. Once done, head south all the way to Ekalaka. In Ekalaka, visit the Carters County Museum and see some incredible prehistoric treasures. Once you’re done, you can head south and then west (MT-323 to MT-277 to U.S 212) to Broadus. While at Broadus, visit the Powder River Historical Museum to experience some amazing historic collections and sites. Stay the night in your RV, and in the morning, continue west all the way to Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument. Once you are here, you are on the home stretch. Head north on I-90 to Billings.
Missouri River Country: Bainville to Malta
Looking for more of a discovery expedition? Head along Lewis and Clark’s Route of the Montana River Country for some amazing historic treasures. This is a shorter drive than the other featured here, at 187 miles. The drive starts in Bainville and heads west on the U.S. 2 along the Missouri & Milks Rivers. Pass through the Fort Peck Reservation to see several historic small towns.
Start in Bainville and head to Culbertson. If your timing is right, you can visit some fun homespun annual events, such as Frontiers Days and the Labor Day Trail Ride and Wagon Train. Continue along U.S 2 to Nashua and head south on the MT-117 to take a tour of the Fort Peck Dam and Power Plant Museum. Then continue west to Glasgow, to experience their Valley County Pioneer Museum. You can wrap up this trip by touring several other museums in Malta.
Going To The Sun Road: Glacier National Park
A blog about Montana’s scenic drives is not complete without mentioning the incredible Going to the Sun Road in Glacier National park! Visit the park’s website before you go to review trailer and vehicle restrictions – the twisting road up Logan’s Pass has too many tight turns for vehicles and trailers over a certain length. During your visit to Glacier National Park, you may see deer, moose, mountain goats, pika, bear, and other wildlife! Remember to view these animals safely, and never approach wildlife.
These are just some of Montana’s wonderful scenic drives. Every Montana resident has their own favorite drive, so don’t be afraid to ask around and see if people know of any other scenic roads you may be interested in.
Montana is also home to dozens of RV campsites. Visit one of these sites in your Bretz RV & Marine Motorhome.