Big Sky, Montana

Elevation: 6240 FT

Population: 2300

County: Gallatin & Madison

The scenic community of Big Sky, Montana, is nestled high in the Rocky Mountains, surrounded by timberland, the Spanish Peaks Primitive Area and the Gallatin National Forest. Majestic 11,166-foot Lone Mountain towers over the paradise, where, in 1969, Chet Huntley, the late newscaster and native Montanan, along with a group of corporate investors, purchased some ranchland with the goal of contributing to Montana's tourism industry by establishing a year-round resort with complete lodging and recreational facilities.

Located on Hwy 191, Big Sky is just 45 miles south of Bozeman and 48 miles north of West Yellowstone. From Bozeman, you will drive through the beautiful Gallatin Canyon, where Bighorn Sheep tend to lick the salt off the road during the winter months. From West Yellowstone, you'll spend half your time driving through Yellowstone National Park as you head north. Keep your eyes open for moose, bears and elk, as many frequent the upper Gallatin River looking for food and foraging in the open fields.

Big Sky is the home to the Biggest Skiing in America, at Big Sky Resort, with over 5,800 acres of downhill ski terrain and one of the largest Nordic trail systems in the nation, at Lone Mountain Guest Ranch, which has over 85 kilometers of groomed trails. The Big Sky community is a year-round playground for outdoor recreationists. Golf, tennis, hiking, horseback riding, fishing, mountain biking, whitewater rafting, downhill and Nordic skiing, sleigh rides and snowmobiling are only a few of the outdoor activities pursued here.

For an exquisitely breathtaking view of Lone Mountain, stop by Soldier's Chapel, in the Meadow Village. Built in 1955, Soldier's Chapel is a small church made of native stone and logs and was constructed as a memorial to the fallen soldiers of World War II, and to serve the spiritual needs of the ranchers and families living in the Gallatin Canyon, as well as their many summer visitors.

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