Is it possible to think of a better spot to enjoy a sunset than a state known for its big sky? Montana sunsets are unlike any other, and as Montana is the fourth largest state, there are many spots to view them.
If you’re planning a trip to Big Sky Country, slow down and enjoy a sunset. You won’t regret it!
Today, we share some excellent locations to watch the best Montana sunsets. Whether you enjoy watching the sunset over a quiet and peaceful lake or a large mountain, we have a spot for you! Let’s get started!
Why Is Montana Called ‘Big Sky Country?’
Montana’s nickname, ‘Big Sky Country,’ is due to a 1960s Montana State Highway Department campaign. A highway worker read Alfred Bertram Guthrie Jr.’s book Big Sky and the department obtained permission from Mr. Guthrie to use the name. They thought it perfectly described the state.
The natural landscapes in Montana make the sky seem more significant. You also don’t have to worry about big city skylines restricting the view. Montana is full of mountains, valleys, and some of the most beautiful vistas that combine with the bright blue skies to create gorgeous views.
Does Montana Have Pretty Sunsets?
The beautiful landscapes and massive skies provide some of the most incredible sunsets you’ll ever experience. If you’re lucky enough to catch an evening with a sky full of cirrus or stratus clouds, you’re in for a real treat.
With such a vast landscape, it’s not challenging to find a quiet place to enjoy a sunset. The solitude and silence add to the experience and provide an ideal opportunity for reflection.
Whether you want the sunset by yourself or with loved ones, it can be a time to reflect on the day and start planning your next adventure.
Where Can I Watch Sunsets in Montana?
While you can view incredible Montana sunsets from almost anywhere in the state, several spots stand out from the rest. Some may require admission, but the views are worth every penny!
Lake McDonald in Glacier National Park
Lake McDonald is the vastest lake in Glacier National Park. The lake is 10 miles long and nearly 500 feet deep, so it’s not impossible to find a spot to sit and enjoy a sunset. The best site to view the sunset is Apgar Village, near Glacier’s west entrance on the south end of the lake.
You’ll get a perfect view of the mountains that help disperse the light as the sun disappears behind them. This is the ideal way to end a day of exploring the national park.
Story Hills in Bozeman
Story Hills is a viewpoint that overlooks one of the few large cities in Montana. Accessing Story Hills requires you to drive or walk a short trail that climbs along the hills.
The hills are only accessible through the generosity of a private landowner. If the landowner restricts access, continuing is trespassing. Please don’t do it!
The view from Story Hills is unique. You get to watch the city of Bozeman as locals and tourists start to enjoy the Bozeman nightlife.
If you’re visiting Bozeman, it’s worth driving by to see if the entrance is open. If not, head to Story Mill Park in Bozeman and enjoy the view.
Elizabeth Lake in Glacier National Park
Accessing Elizabeth Lake isn’t simple, and guests to the lake typically do so as a part of multi-day hiking trips. It’s a 9.5-mile trek from the Chef Mountain Trailhead or a 9-mile hike from Many Glacier Valley. However, the walk to Elizabeth Lake is worth it!
You can watch the sun dip behind the mountains with a view that looks straight out of a postcard. The bright colors in the sky reflect in the water.
This location is a photographer’s paradise for natural beauty and depth. You’ll have to work to get here, but the view is worth the effort.
Sacajawea Peak Near Bozeman
Sacajawea Peak is the highest peak in the Bridger Mountain Range. Accessing the peak requires a 4.2-mile hike with an average grade of 16%.
It’s a challenging task but attainable for hikers in good physical condition. You’ll be climbing at over 7,500 feet elevation, and the peak sits at 9,600 feet, so expect the air to be significantly thinner.
The view from Sacajawea Peak is breathtaking. You get a bird’s-eye view of the surrounding area and can be one of the last people in the area to catch a glimpse of the sun.
You get a fantastic workout while climbing to the peak and an excellent view, where you can enjoy a snack before heading down the mountain. Bring flashlights with you, as it will be very dark by the time you reach the trail’s end.
Peets Hill in Bozeman
Peets Hill is a hot spot for locals at the end of the day. The trail is very popular for all sorts of physical activity. You’ll commonly see walkers, bikers, strollers, runners, and many looking to exercise and enjoy the view.
The view from Peets Hill gives you the whole Montana experience. You’ll see the mountains and valleys that make Montana sunsets unique. There are not many benches along the trail. Start your hike early if you’re hoping to snag a seat to enjoy the view.
Backroads of Montana
While some locations in Montana provide epic views at sunset, you’ll find miles of backgrounds that won’t disappoint. Hop in the vehicle and cruise the backroads of Montana.
You can put on your favorite playlist and create a relaxing and comfortable environment. There’s no shortage of places around Montana to pause for a moment and enjoy the sunset.
What Makes Montana Sunsets So Special?
The vast lands and minimal population make Montana special. It’s a rugged land that has yet to experience the massive development and growth that much of the country has witnessed over the past 200 years.
Much of the landscapes still resemble what life would have looked like when settlers headed west.
Will You Take in Montana Sunsets?
It’s hard to beat Montana sunsets. Sitting on a sandy beach watching the sunset over the ocean is terrific, but when you’ve seen one beach sunset, you’ve seen them all. The mountainous landscapes provide infinite possibilities.
If you enjoy sunsets and are looking for a place to adventure, we think you should consider Montana. Where will you stop in Montana during your next trip?