Favorite Local Motorcycle Routes: Montana
by ROGER HEUMANN on Aug 22, 2021
Montana has some of the best motorcycle roads in the country. Big Sky Country has mountains, plains and everything in between. With Glacier National Park and Yellowstone, there are plenty of beautiful sites to enjoy. The roadside amenities are rather sparse so you’ll want to plan ahead when it comes to eating, sleeping and getting gas. Here are a few of the best routes in this state.
-Hwy 49 to US Hwy 89
This short 12-mile route starts just east of Glacier and takes you on a winding, two-lane road through some beautiful hills and valleys. The road quality isn’t always the best, but the turns and hills are awe-inspiring. Make sure you gas up before you go since there aren’t any stops along the way. Take the road slow so you can enjoy the scenery.
-Rolling Pastures and Wide Skylines
This long, nearly 300-mile ride starts with rolling farm lanes and takes you to small buttes. You’ll enjoy pine trees, badlands views and wide-open skylines. The roads along the way are good and there isn’t usually a lot of traffic. The straight aways give you a change to look around and the wide curves are fun at times as well. Roadside amenities are sparse, about what you would expect for rural America.
-Chief Joseph Run
With over 100 miles, you get to see a small western town as well as mountains. You’ll climb Last Trail Pass and make your way to the top of Chief Joseph Pass. On the way back down, you go through Big Hole Valley and see a few rivers to wrap things up. The roads are maintained well and the people along the way are always friendly. There are a few cafes to enjoy as well.
-Kings Hill Highway
This route is almost 100 miles long and takes you through gorgeous mountain vistas and open farmland as well as everything else you might enjoy in Montana. You’ll likely spy some antelope and deer and maybe even elk, bears, or wolves. Take some binoculars on this ride and pull over on occasion to get a better look. There are a lot of fun hills and twists and turns along the way as well.
-St. Joe River Scenic Byway
This ride is over 100 miles long and gives you elevation changes and twisties. There isn’t usually any traffic along this path and it follows the edge of the St. Joe River. The road is dusty and there are a few miles of gravel, but you’ll get to see beautiful rivers, forests, and mountains on this scenic drive.
-The Lennep Cut Off
You get a little of everything on this road including flat paths, straight sections, hills, turns and twists. There might be potholes at certain times of the year and The Bair Family Museum is a great place to stop and enjoy. Caste Town ghost town makes for another interesting, historic stop and you’ll get views of three different mountain ranges within a few miles on this route.
Montana has some of the most breath-taking views in the country and you can enjoy them all on your motorcycle. Choose a few routes for their fun, their scenery, and their entertaining stops. It’s easy to go back and do your favorites again, but make sure to try a few new ones to discover new favorites as well.