Rocky Mountains in Big Sky, MontanaInformation:
At an elevation of 7,218 feet (2,200 meters), southern Montana’s Big Sky in the heart of the Custer Gallatin National Forest offers a variety of outdoor recreation and is particularly known for its downhill skiing and mountain biking. During the winter, Big Sky Resort offers more than 5,800 acres (2,347 hectares) of skiable terrain across four mountains and 53 miles (85 kilometers) of cross-country ski trails. A variety of hiking trails provide access to some of the area’s sights such as Ousel Falls, Beehive Basin, Lava Lake, Storm Castle Peak, and Porcupine Creek. Another sight, standing at 11,166 feet (3,403 meters) in elevation, is Lone Peak, which provides views of three states, two national parks, the Spanish Peaks, and Madison Range. Other winter activities are dog sledding, snowmobiling, hunting, snowshoeing, and sleigh rides. Summer activities include camping, fishing, horseback riding, whitewater rafting, ziplining, and golfing.
Grizzly and Wolf Discovery Center
201 S Canyon Street
West Yellowstone, Montana 59758
Grizzly and Wolf Discovery Center is a wildlife park in West Yellowstone dedicated to grizzly bears and grey wolves. However, the center also is home to non-releasable birds of prey and river otters. The center’s main purpose is to teach guests about the animals as they view them interacting outdoors in their natural habitat. The bears are rescues that are unable to survive in the wild for various reasons, many orphaned by their mothers or labeled nuisance bears for becoming too comfortable around humans. The wolves are from captive-born litters that were unplanned and cannot be released into the wild. The center’s indoor Yellowstone riparian habitat features aquariums of Yellowstone cutthroat trout and Arctic grayling along with its playful river otters. Also on display are reptiles, invertebrates, and amphibians including the seclusive western tiger salamander. A gift shop offers a variety of clothing, books, and souvenirs.
Montana Grizzly Encounter
80 Bozeman Hill Road
Bozeman, Montana 59715
Montana Grizzly Encounter is a grizzly bear sanctuary in Bozeman. Brutus the Bear, co-host of the National Geographic Channel’s Expedition Wild with Casey Anderson, came to the sanctuary as the size of a squirrel and now stands at 7 feet (2 meters) tall and weighs close to 900 pounds (408 kilograms). Other bear residents include Bella, twins Sheena and Christi, Maggi, Max, and Lucy. Visitors can watch the animals in their natural habitat while learning about grizzly bear conservation. A gift shop offers a variety of bear-related souvenirs.
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