1. There’s no such thing as a snow day.
In other parts of the country, a light dusting of snow means school is canceled, work is on hold and no one hits the road...for days. Sorry to disappoint, but that’s not going to happen here in Montana. Blizzards? Sub-zero temps? 4’ of snow overnight? Just throw on some extra layers and handle it. If you’ve got kids, don't worry, if it's under -10 degrees they move recess inside.
2. Everything will freeze.
There will be days where you’ll find your car door frozen shut, along with your garbage can, mailbox and anything liquid that you left in your car. When it gets really cold, you want to make sure you have at least a quarter tank of gas, because yes, that will freeze too.
3. Don’t leave your bear spray in your car.
You’ll find out soon enough that owning bear spray is necessary if you want to explore any trails. But, the real lesson to be learned here is to never leave the bear spray in your car, especially in the summer. The temperature fluctuations in Montana could trigger a bear spray explosion. Which trust us, you do not want to be a part of. Photo credit: nbcmontana.com
4. If you don’t have a dog, you should probably get one.
It’s a dog’s world here in Bozeman. On top of the hundreds of miles of trails, a half dozen off-leash parks and plenty of doggy day cares, we also have plenty of stores just for the pups where you can find locally made dog beds, toys, and organic treats. And since it is Bozeman, you should probably get a lab and name it Bridger...or Madison. We're creative like that.
5. A weather forecast is more of suggestion.
Weather in Montana is unpredictable. It can snow in July and hit 75 degrees in November. It can also go from blue skies to blizzard in an hour, so as you can imagine, weather forecasts are tough to report. We suggest taking those weather reports with a grain of salt.
6. Yes, everyone drives a Subaru.
What’s the fastest way to empty the co-op? Announce that there is a Subaru with its lights on in the parking lot. Just slap a “Get Lost” sticker on the back and you’re basically a local!
7. Don’t bring your road rage.
The general rule of thumb in Montana is to be nice to your fellow drivers. And most of the time, that’s the case here in Bozeman. There’s that moment when you accidentally cut someone off and are greeted with a wave rather than a honk that makes you think “who ARE these people? Yep, we’re crazy like that and we want to keep it that way. So take your hand off the horn and give that next a$#hole a wave.
8. You better like beer.
We really like beer here in Bozeman, especially local beer. In fact, Montana has the most breweries per capita in the country. Of the 53 breweries in Montana, 8 of them are right here in Bozeman. Cheers!
9. It’s not all cowboys & horses.
Before you start Amazon shopping for cowboy hats, you should probably know that not everyone in Montana is strolling down main street with their spurs jingling. If you are not a cowboy, no need to dress like one. But, if you insist, you can guarantee the locals (and the real cowboys) will be getting a good laugh as you walk by.
10. Instagram is right. Montana is really, really beautiful.
Yes, there's a lot of hype about how beautiful Montana is. How it's the “Last Best Place”. As much as we'd like to keep it a secret, we can't deny that it truly is as beautiful as everyone says. We feel lucky every single day to call Montana home.