HERE ARE 12 WAYS YOU CAN SURVIVE WINTER IN BOZEMAN:
1. INVEST IN SNOW REMOVAL: YOUR STREETS AND YOUR DRIVEWAY
A good snow shovel will do, though a snowblower is ideal for large properties. There is a city requirement to clear your sidewalks within twenty-four hours of a storm so that is something to be prepared to do, for both renters and homeowners.
2. GET WINTER TIRES ON YOUR CAR
…and get them on early. The first heavy snowfall every year always has a way of sneaking up on people. Get your tires swapped early October and you’ll be prepared for the worst when everybody else isn’t! Between snow tires and AWD/4WD, trust me when I say your winter driving experience will be much less stressful.
3. IF YOU COMMUTE, CHECK THE ROAD CONDITIONS BEFORE YOU GO
If you’re new to driving on snow, just take it s l o w. Leave extra space between cars and try not to be in a hurry. When the roads are a mess, plan ahead for a longer commute. Even the most seasoned drivers are out of practice when the first snowfall happens. You can stay updated on current road conditions using the road report provided by the Montana Department of Transportation.
MY BEST ADVICE:
4. FIND AN OUTDOOR WINTER ACTIVITY THAT YOU L-O-V-E
For most people… it’s skiing. And understandably so, we are very fortunate to have many world-class ski resorts nearby. (Bridger or Big Sky? We’ll let you choose.) Besides resort skiing there are plenty of opportunities for anything winter related: cross-country skiing, backcountry skiing, snowshoeing, ice hockey, ice skating, ice fishing, snowmobiling, sledding. It helps to have something to look forward to every winter, and all the better if it’s considered exercise. With more of us working from home lately, it’s important to have an activity that gets us out of the house and frankly, moving
TIPS FOR GETTING OUTSIDE:
5. FIND QUALITY WINTER LAYERS
Layering up is key to being comfortable when transitioning between seasons and also between the indoors and outside. Light layers and base layers of merino wool silk will keep you warm while regulating your body temperature. Remember to grab your mittens, hats, scarves and neckies when the temperatures fall to the single to negative digits. For the coldest days, a quality insulated down coat and thick wool socks will keep you toasty. With a healthy selection of mid-layers in your clothing rotation, you’ll be prepared anytime the temperatures drop unseasonably low throughout the year.
6. GET TO KNOW THE TRAILS AROUND TOWN
Another thing that makes Bozeman great: our public trail system. The Gallatin Valley Land Trust has done an amazing job of preserving space for trails that connect us in our various communities. Whether it is the beloved Gallagator linear trail or the newly built Story Hill Park Trail, there is likely to be one right in your neighborhood. They link subdivisions together in a way roads cannot, allowing access to different parts of town on foot or ski.
7. PLAN A TRIP OUT OF TOWN
A vacation somewhere warm is always ideal, but when that’s out of the picture, even getting out of Bozeman from time to time helps. Winter tends to get dreary come February, so I recommend booking a trip then. Here are a couple favorites below:
8. DOGSLED AT LONE MOUNTAIN RANCH IN BIG SKY
Adorable alaskan huskies and a truly exhilarating experience! Spend a day with the happy dogs at work and take in gorgeous views of the Spanish Peaks in Big Sky. Lone Mountain Ranch is winter luxury at its best: your pick of cozy yet tasteful cabins, sleigh rides to a signature prime rib dinner, and morning yoga classes by the fireside.
9. SPEND A WEEKEND IN YELLOWSTONE
People come from all over the world to see Yellowstone in the summer, but locals know winter in Yellowstone is not to be missed. Take in the attractions at your own time and enjoy it mostly to yourself- I call that a win-win. The Old Faithful Lodge and the Mammoth Hot Springs Hotel are the place to spend a romantic night in Yellowstone (this winter the Old Faithful Lodge is not booking overnight stays). Call the hotel your cozy homebase and spend the day skiing the trails and seeking wolves in Lamar Valley. I recommend booking a snowcoach tour to see the Grand Canyon of Yellowstone in the quiet solitude of winter.
WHEN IT’S TOO COLD TO BE OUTSIDE:
10. SPEND SATURDAYS AT THE BOZEMAN WINTER FARMERS’ MARKET
Haven’t you heard? The winter farmer’s market is at the Gallatin Fairgrounds this year! Happening every other Saturday from 9am-12pm. It’s an excellent way to stay engaged with your local agriculture community at a time when fresh food is hard to find. Shopping at the farmers market takes the guesswork out of knowing what’s seasonally available in the valley and easier to plan meals accordingly.
11. START A WINTER HOME REMODELING PROJECT
Embrace this slowed pace of life, winter is an opportune time to start a home project to keep your mind and hands occupied while indoors. Renovate that one area in your home that sorely needs the attention. Refresh your bathroom with a new coat of paint. Take this time to add those small but impactful touches to your home that will increase its value. Read my advice on selling your home for top dollar here.
12. FIND A COMPLEMENTARY INDOOR HOBBY
Fall back on the ever reliable indoor activities: baking, fly tying, knitting, journaling, painting, reading. Put a hearty soup (or mulled wine) in the crockpot and let it simmer away while you rejuvenate from the hurried pace of summer.