The state of Montana is located in the west of the United States of America and borders Canada, South and North Dakota, Wyoming and Idaho. The state got its name from the Spanish word “montaña”, which translates as “mountain”. The west of the state is covered by the continuously forested Rocky Mountains, while the eastern part is made up of plateaus. The territory of Montana was annexed to the USA as its western territory in 1864. However, it did not become the 41st state of the Union until November 8, 1889. With its area of 381,156 km², Montana is the fourth largest state in the USA.
In the past, the territory of Montana was inhabited by numerous Indian tribes of Sioux, Cheyenne and Northern Arapaho. These tribes did not want to surrender to the white settlers, lose their freedom and retreat from their territory, that is why numerous bloody battles took place here. In the famous Battle of the Little Bighorn in 1876, US Army Lt. Col. George Armstrong Custer was even killed when he and his soldiers attacked a huge camp of native united tribes. This battle was the most famous encounter between Indians and whites. Back then, Indian tribes were able to fight and defend their land. However, several other attacks followed, the Indians were gradually pushed out of the territory, defeated, and white settlers began to flow into the territory. Today, the Little Bighorn Battlefield is an attractive tourist destination and national recreation area.
Today in Montana you will find only a few Indian reservations, such as Crow, Blackfeet, Flathead, Fort Belknap, Fort Peck, Northern Cheyenne or Rocky Boy. The surface of the earth is very diverse. To the west rise the rugged Rocky Mountains, with the highest peak reaching a height of 3,901 meters above sea level, but to the east stretch endless plains where numerous herds of bison roam. You’ll also find the headwaters of the Missouri River, which runs through the state. Perhaps the country’s greatest natural gems are Glacier National Park and part of Yellowstone National Park. These national parks are made up of beautiful scenery, with mountain peaks, forested valleys and full of lakes and waterfalls.
Yellowstone is the oldest national park in the world, it was declared as early as 1872. The park got its name from the Yellowstone River that flows through it. About 80% of the park is covered by forests, the rest is made up of meadows and water bodies. It is particularly interesting for its hot springs, geysers, bubbling mud pits, canyons, waterfalls and eroded lava flows. There are about 100 waterfalls and many hot volcanic geysers in the park. The most famous geyser is Old Faithful, which erupts at regular intervals to a height of 36 meters. It is also home to many species of wildlife, such as bison, wapiti deer, elk, coyotes, beavers and grizzly bears.
According to TRACKAAH, Montana has a population of just under a million. The population density here is very low, only 2.39 inhabitants per square km, which ranks Montana among the most sparsely populated states in the USA. About 90% of the population is white, about 2% is black, and the remaining percentages are evenly split between Native Americans, Asians, and other races. The population is Christian, Roman Catholics and Protestants predominate. Another prominent religious group includes the Mormons. About 18% of the population has no religious affiliation.
The main sectors of the economy include the mining industry, especially the mining of coal, oil, ores of non-ferrous and precious metals. Mining and wood processing, wood products, food processing, metallurgical and paper industries are also of great importance. Farmers cultivate cereals, sugar beets, raise cattle, sheep, cattle and pigs. Milk production is also important. Tourism also plays a significant role in Montana’s economy, accounting for up to 30% of GDP.
The capital of Montana is Helena with less than 30 thousand inhabitants. Helena is also the county seat of Lewis and Clark County. The town was built in 1864 after gold was discovered in the local stream. In the city today you will find several interesting buildings that are worth seeing. These include, for example, St. Helena’s Cathedral, the State Capitol, the building of the Roman Catholic University of Carroll College or the building of the Technical University of The University of Montana. According to COUNTRYAAH, other important cities include Billings, Missoula, Great Falls, Butte-Silver Bow, Bozeman, Kalispell, Havre, Anaconda–Deer Lodge County and Miles City.
Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area
The Bighorn Canyon recreation area is located on the territory of the states of Wyoming and Montana in the United States of America. It was established in 1966 after the construction of the Yellowtail Dam. The dam located on the Bighorn River was named after the chief of the Crow Indian tribe, Robert Yellowtail. More than one-third of this recreation area is located on the Crow Indian Reservation.
There are two visitor centers in Bighorn Canyon, one in Fort Smith, Montana and the other near Lovell, Wyoming. Afterbay Lake, which extends below the dam, is a great spot for trout fishing and wildlife viewing such as ducks and geese and much more. It is a well-known fishing area, where thousands of enthusiastic fishermen go every year.
Although this recreation area is relatively little known among tourists and is still waiting to be discovered, you can enjoy rich recreational opportunities here. Nature has created breathtaking scenery and scenery here, countless species of animals live here, and visitors can enjoy boating, fishing, camping and hiking. Bighorn Canyon mainly offers solitude, peace and a relaxing atmosphere far from civilization.