Absaroka Mountains: Elephant Head Summit

Elephant Head is a full day hike to a large flat summit in the northern Absaroka Mountains of Montana. The thigh burning final approach of 1500 feet up a loose talus slope is sure to have you aching the next day.

The dirt

  • Length: ~9 miles roundtrip
  • Difficulty: advanced
  • Elevation gain: about 3500 ft
  • Fun fact: Large flat summit with excellent views down the front range of the Absarokas

Location

Download the GPX file.

Bridger Mountains (MT): Sacagawea Peak

This relatively easy and short hike is close to the Bozeman, Montana metropolitan area. It is suitable for everyone in reasonable shape (including kids) and ends up with a 360° panorama of the area.

The Dirt

  • Length: 4.5 miles roundtrip
  • Difficulty: easy to moderate (due to elevation gain)
  • Elevation gain: about 2000 ft depending on trailhead
  • Exposure: none to slight (on the summit only)
  • Family-friendly: yes
  • Optimal Season: June – October (with significant snow in June likely)
  • Fun fact: Great views of the Bridger and Crazy Mountain Ranges, with the Tobacco Roots and Beartooths in the distance. Access road passes the Bridger Bowl Ski Area.

Flickr Photos

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Location

Download the GPX file.

2009 Miles City Bucking Horse Sale

Montana is chock full of rodeos in the summer. You can’t back your truck up without hitting one. But if you only have time to go to one rodeo, you should go to the Bucking Horse Sale in Miles City. It’s the rooten’est, tooten’est, well, rodeo.

The BHS is unscripted, loose and wild, not slick new-country. People here actually use their trucks. There’s nary a mullet in site. Ranchers mingle with rodeo promoters looking to complete their stables for the upcoming rodeo season. After every event the bucking broncs and bulls are auctioned off.

You’ll also find a limitless supply of photographers. And they’re there for a good reason — the Bucking Horse Sale is incredibly photogenic (and incredibly phun). Don’t miss you chance to catch a fleeting glimpse of the old west before it turns into a coal-bed methane wasteland.

A parade on Sunday concludes the events with tractors and farm equipment dating back to the turn of last century. It takes a long time for 110+ years of farm implement history to roll down mainstreet. There’s plenty of time to fetch breakfast or a cowboy coffee in the middle without missing too much.

The Dirt

  • When: Third full weekend in May
  • Where: Miles City, Montana
  • Fun Fact: Real cowboys with an unlimited supply of beer

Flickr Photos

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