21 Amazing Montana Facts: Uncovering the Wonders and Untold Stories

Once a frontier state, Montana is famous for its beautiful natural scenery, gold rush history, and national parks.

Also, this state reminds tourists of the mountains along the Continental Divide, the bisons roaming, the wilderness, and even the fact that it is one of the least populated states in the United States, with just over a million population.

There are numerous fun and interesting facts about the state of Montana, some of which you may wish to know. So, in this article, we will now discuss some interesting facts about Montana.

  1. Montana is the “Treasure State”
Montana is the Treasure State

The nickname of this state might surprise you. While Montana has several nicknames, one of the most popular is the “Treasure State.”

The entire state of Montana is a treasure. However, this specific nickname mainly goes back to the Golden Age of mining. This particular state was rich in precious metals that were both figurative and literal treasures.

  1. Montana was the 41st state

Montana was the 41st state in the United States and earned its star in 1889. However, Montana was a territory of the United States long before that. 

Some parts of Montana were part of the land that was offered to the U.S. in 1803 during the Louisiana Purchase. The rest of what is now the state of Montana was gained in 1846 in Great Britain.

  1. The Continental Divide splits it

The United States is home to many mountains. However, the Continental Divide is one of the most well-known mountain ranges in the nation. The range stretches from Alaska all the way down to South America.

The name of this mountain range is quite literal. Because of its length, it divides the continent of North America almost completely. That even includes running through this state, Montana.

  1. This state has had the greatest temperature change

Generally, Montana isn’t the coldest or the hottest state in the United States. The coldest temperature is generally around 28 degrees Fahrenheit, and the warmest is almost 84.5 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Generally, temperatures hover around these averages and become a little bit colder or warmer depending on the time of year.

However, Lama, Montana, holds the record for the world’s largest temperature difference in a day. In just 24 hours, the temperature of this place changed from 103 to 49 degrees.

  1. In the lower 48 United States, Montana has the only grizzly bear population
Montana has the only grizzly bear population

Often, grizzly bears are talked about in survivor movies and manuals about trekking through the forest. However, if you are in the continent of the United States, the only area you will see is Montana. 

It is estimated that there are 60 thousand of grizzlies in North America. The vast majority of these animals are found in Canada and Alaska. However, are almost 1000 in the lower 48 United States, and all are in Montana.

  1. The “Big Sky Country

While going through the state information regarding Montana, you will come across the nickname “Big Sky Country.” This name is because it is one of the state’s other monikers. This name derives from the pristine skyline that you can see in Montana.

Since there are few urban developments and cities, the sky looks much bigger here since you can watch it reach the natural horizon.

  1. Granite Peak is on top of Montana
Granite Peak is on top of Montana

Montana is full of mountains. However, one of them still rises higher than the others. The highest peak in Montana is Granite Peak. It reaches an impressive 12,807 feet above sea level and is known as the highest natural peak in Montana.

The height of this peak also makes it one of the most challenging mountains in the United States to climb.

Also, though sometimes the Rocky Mountains are thought of as a single mountain range, this mountain actually has 100 different ranges. Altogether, these mountains cover more than 3000 miles of land.

  1. Beaver Creek Park: A record holder
Montana's Beaver Creek Park

With 10 thousand acres of land, Beaver Creek Park has been open to the public since 1916. Its huge size makes it the largest county park in the country.

Hill County has the responsibility to maintain this park. It is open all year, and tourists can perform several recreational activities, including fishing, camping, and many more.

  1. One can cross the border in Waterton Lakes National Park
Waterton Lakes National Park of Montana

Technically, Waterton Lakes National Park is a Canadian National Park. However, one can get to it from Montana as well. The park borders Montana’s Glacier National Park. 

If you want to visit the park, you must bring your passport because that way, you will be prepared just in case you can cross the border without even realizing it.

  1. Triple Divide Peak contributes to multiple oceans
Montana's Triple Divide Peak

Triple Divide Peak has a height of over 8000 feet above sea level; however, that’s not the reason why it is impressive. It is one of the only mountain peaks of its kind. 

When the snow melts from the peak of this mountain, it usually follows three distinct pathways that let water proceed toward one of the three oceans. The Atlantic, Pacific, and Southern Oceans all receive water from this route.

  1. The Missouri River doesn’t start its flow in Missouri

The Missouri River is famous as one of the longest rivers in the world. However, you would be surprised to know that it doesn’t start its course in Missouri.

This river mainly starts its path in Montana’s Brower’s Spring and then eventually meets with the Mississippi and finally ends in the Gulf of Mexico.

  1. The National Bison Range has almost 60 calves annually
Montana's The National Bison Range

The National Bison Range is seen in the Flathead Indian Reservation in Montana and covers about 19 thousand acres of land. In the lower 48, bison are the largest mammals, and much of their natural habitat has also been developed there.

The Bison Range can help ensure these animals have a particular place to live and thrive to prevent their numbers from dwindling. Also, it has done a great job because about 50 to 60 bison calves are born on this land each year.

  1. Some part of Yellowstone National Park is here

The first national park in the United States has always been one of this country’s most famous national parks. Yellowstone National Park has drawn tourists from around the globe for several decades.

While most part of this national park is in Wyoming, this park is too massive to be accommodated just by one state. So, almost 3% of this national park is in Montana, and another small part is in Idaho as well.

  1. . Glacier National Park is losing glaciers
Montana's Glacier National Park

The famous Glacier National Park is one of the most popular national parks in the western U.S. The park receives its name from the 35 glaciers found within it. 

Unfortunately, this number is gradually decreasing. As the temperature rises and climate changes, the glaciers of this park have started melting. Five more of these glaciers’ remaining numbers might even disappear in the next decade.

  1. The western meadowlark: The Montana state bird
The Montana state bird

If you are looking for state symbols, know about the Montana state bird, the western meadowlark. It is a small bird noteworthy for its bright yellow-colored belly and chest.

This beautiful bird is native to Montana and turned out to be a national symbol after a vote performed by school children. Since 1931, it’s had the protected status derived from this recognition.

  1. The Yogo Sapphire of Montana is truly rare

The Yogo Sapphire variety is popular as one of the most precious gems on the planet. Though you can find a lot of sapphires around the globe, these can only be found in the state of Montana.

These beautiful Yogo Sapphires are found in the Yogo Gulch in the state. The very first examples of this precious stone were discovered in the 1880s and attracted miners to the state in search of others.

  1. Bitterroot: The state flower of Montana
The state flower of Montana

You will be surprised to know about the prized plant of this state. The bitterroot is the state flower of Montana. 

Since 1894, this beautiful and bright flower has been a symbol of the state. Once again, the residents of this state were tasked with selecting which plant could earn the title. Out of 30 options, bitterroot was the ultimate winner.

  1. Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park is now a UNESCO site

The famous Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park is unique and also the first park of its kind. This famous park merges Glacier Park in Montana and the Waterton Lakes National Park in Canada.

Both popular parks are nationally protected places; however, the territory designated for the international park has now become a UNESCO site. This particular site was formed to preserve the diverse wildlife in the area better.

  1. Here you will see the shortest river in the world

Another interesting fact about Montana is that it is home to the shortest river of the world, which is the Roe River.

The path of this river is just 201 feet, which earned it recognition from the famous Guinness World Record Association. This even means that Montana is home to the longest and shortest rivers in the United States.

  1. Flathead Lake is located in the west

There is no doubt that Montana is a place of several natural marvels. Hence, it is no surprise that Flathead Lake, located in the western continental U.S., is the largest natural freshwater lake in this area. This famous lake has a surface area of almost 200 square miles.

However, it is not the deepest lake, so it doesn’t have the most water. Lake Tahoe holds that title.

  1. There are only a little more than one million people

Though Montana is a large state, it only has a little more than a million people. Thus, this state is one of the least populated states in the United States and ranks 43rd in the nation for population.

So, Montane is a U.S. state famous for its captivating landscape, diverse wildlife, interesting culture, rich history, etc.

At the end of this article, we learned 21 interesting facts that offer us a clear picture of this state, Montana. You can see our website if you want to know some additional facts.

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