Change is in the air, and fall in the Headwaters region is the perfect time to relax, unwind and relish some activities you can only enjoy in autumn. Southwest Montana is all awash with fall colors and alpenglow sunsets, and a break from summer crowds means you have all this bite of Big Sky to yourself to enjoy. So saddle up, and set out to test some of these unforgettable tastes of fall fun.
River valleys mean fiery fall foliage when the cottonwoods and aspen go berserk along the riverbanks. With three rivers meeting right outside Three Forks, you can’t go wrong when it comes to chasing colors. When the sunlight shines down, grab a bike from the Sacajawea and make the seven-mile ride on paved trails to Missouri Headwaters State Park, where you can feel the leaves crunch underfoot and enjoy the sweet, fresh air.
Sure, you can see wildlife year-round in this neck of the woods. But as the weather starts changing and fewer people are around to disrupt the critters, moose, elk, bears and birds are out in force to treat your binoculars or spotting scope to the view of a lifetime. You don’t even have to head into the backcountry—with fishing accesses and parks leading into wilderness areas that basically border town, you never know what animals you’ll spot right around Three Forks.
PUMPKIN PATCH OR MAZE
Sink your teeth into some autumnal adventure. Hay and corn mazes mark a fun-filled day throughout the state and across the Gallatin Valley, giving you plenty of options within a quick drive. It’s okay to get a little lost—that’s the best part!
Your sore muscles will thank you for a sulfury hot springs soak no matter the season. But as cooler fall weather starts to sneak into the rotation, those steaming pools start to feel even more appealing. Live music on weekend evenings at Norris Hot Springs spurs socializing and relaxation all at once, and the bite of chilly night air on your nose while you sip a local microbrew is the feeling of fall in a nutshell.
Townsend Fall Fest
Early October wakes up the sleepy town of Townsend, Montana, with a three-day Fall Fest. Car shows, beer tasting, live music, vendors and small-town charm are just a few of the things on the docket for this weekend of fall spirit. Get locally made gifts at the annual craft show, and you’ll have the drop on your holiday shopping before Thanksgiving.
When Halloween nears, the witching hour arrives in nearby Butte, Montana, with the Spooks and Spirits Haunted Trolley Tours. Get a taste of local history with a side of goosebumps and chills down your spine on this spirited tour that takes you through some of the most historical and eeriest sites in the state. Or a little wacky and off-the-wall, an event with Bozeman Paranormal will get you ready for a full-scale haunting. The ghost-hunting organization’s tours of the historic Clark Chateau museum will give you tingles while they show you how to become a ghost buster and seek out spooks.
If you enjoyed this blog, take a look at some of our other related articles:
- Why You Should Visit The Headwaters In The Fall
- The 4 Best Historic Hotels Of Montana
- Best Headwaters Scenic Areas For Fall Colors
- Soak It All Up At Norris Hot Springs