From hiking and skiing to touring the area’s exciting museums, there is something for everyone in Bozeman. Here are 6 things you should know before calling this place home.From hiking and skiing to touring the area’s exciting museums, there is something for everyone in Bozeman. Here are 6 things you should know before calling this place home.Local Guide

6 Things to Know Before Moving to Bozeman, MT

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Bozeman is a beautiful city located in Southwest Montana and Gallatin county. It’s surrounded by stunning views of the Rocky Mountains and is a thriving college town. As of the 2020 census, Bozeman's population was 53,293. It is currently the fourth-largest city in Montana. This thriving city is rich with history and attracts many tourists and new residents every year. From hiking and skiing to touring the area’s exciting museums, there is something for everyone in Bozeman. If you’ve been considering a move to this city, here are 6 things you should know before calling this place home.

1: It’s a fast-growing area.

As the main city of the Bozeman, MT Micropolitan Statistical Area — which is the state’s largest micropolitan area. Bozeman is noted for its fast growth rate, so much that it is soon to be upgraded to Montana's fourth metropolitan area. Currently, Bozeman has had a positive growth rate for over forty years, upgrading from the sixth to the fourth-largest city in the state. What’s bringing in the new residents? It’s a combination of its excellent quality of life, job opportunities, amazing scenery, and plentiful recreation.

2: It’s a great place for skiers.

If you like to ski regularly without spending a lot on plane tickets, then you will love Bozeman’s proximity to a lot of highly rated resorts. In August 2010, Outside Magazine selected the city as the “Best Place to Live in the West for Skiing.” Here are some of the top locations where people can enjoy this popular winter sport:

  • Bridger Bowl: Located near Bozeman, Montana, residents don’t have to drive far for some excellent ski slopes Students from the nearby Montana State University also like to come here during their weekends and breaks. Its summit elevation reaches 8,700 feet above sea level and has a vertical drop of 2,600 feet on its east-facing slopes.
  • Big Sky: If you want a premium experience, Big Sky is considered a premier destination. Even if you live locally, you may just want to rent a lodge at this luxurious ski resort for the fine dining and top-class spa experience. It’s located just south of Bozeman and has more than 5,700 acres of skiable areas. If you move to Bozeman, this is a place to go for a high-end ski experience.

There are other resorts nearby like the Bohart Ranch Cross-Country Ski Center and Lone Mountain, which serve both skiers and ice skaters.

3: It’s a college town.

Montana State University, the state’s largest university, is located in the heart of Bozeman. This is a strong drive to the local economy and ensures that Bozeman is a lively college town. If you move here, expect the academic year to have more in-town traffic than during winter and summer break.

Montana State University offers undergraduate, master's, and doctoral degrees in dozens of fields at its nine colleges. Not only does this university boost the city’s reputation, but it also contributes to its value by protecting the local history through establishments like the Montana State University’s Museum of the Rockies.

4: Dinosaurs!

On a fun note, if you or someone in your family loves dinosaurs, Bozeman has a little something to please. The Siebel Dinosaur Complex, which is located in the Museum of the Rockies, has an incredible collection of dinosaur fossils, including Tyrannosaurus Rex specimens. There is also a planetarium for anyone who loves to stargaze and learn more about the cosmos.

5: It’s a paradise for lovers of the outdoors.

Another reason why Bozeman pleases locals is because of its ample opportunities to enjoy the outdoors. If you love hiking, biking, and rock climbing, this city has so many places to explore. It doesn’t take long to notice the astounding beauty that surrounds Bozeman. The lush trees, plentiful hiking trails, and surrounding mountains are the stuff of photographers’ dreams.

Take a pick among Bozeman’s official trail map to find your favorite among biking and hiking trails. A couple of favorites is the Bridger Range to the north and the Spanish Peaks which is located on the south side of Bozeman. Both locations have trails for biking and hiking and places to ski during the winter sports season. The Gallatin National Forest also boasts some of the best cross-country trails in the nation — and it’s just a few minutes from downtown!

6: Bozeman is proud of its history

Bozeman is a city that is proud of its roots. Named after John M. Bozeman the founder of Bozeman Trail and the town in August 1864, Bozeman trailblazer the Bozeman trail which spun off the Oregon Trail and led to Virginia City through the Gallatin Valley. As the city grew through its ability to trade through this route and its fertile land, more settlers wanted to call Bozeman home.

If you visit the Gallatin History Museum, you can also learn about the town’s history before and after western settlers arrived. This area has been the home of many indigenous tribes like the Shoshone, Nez Perce, Blackfeet, Crow Nation, Flathead, and Sioux. The museum contains displays that flesh out the early life in Southwest Montana and other displays like the life size pioneer cabin called Big Horn Gun, exhibits on jails, music, agriculture, and women’s history.

Bonus: Weather Facts About Bozeman

What Is the Weather Like in Bozeman?

Are you considering relocating to Bozeman but wondering if you can handle the weather throughout the year? Though this is a community that is known for its beautiful outdoors, you may find it has mild winters and exceptional weather throughout the year.

Bozeman sits at 4,820 feet. Its layout plays a big role in the overall climate you can expect here throughout the year. The Bridger Mountains are located to the north of the city, and the Tobacco Root range is located to the southwest. In the northwest, you will find both eh Horseshoe Hills and Big Belt Mountain areas, and the Gallatin Range is located just to the south of the city, along with the Madison Range’s Spanish Peaks. As you can tell, much of the city is surrounded by hills and mountains, which creates quite a protected inner area of the city.

The area has a humid continental climate. The humidity is higher here during most of the year thanks to the higher level of rainfall the area gets each year. Each year, it can receive up to 24 inches of rain. By comparison, surrounding areas typically only see about 8 to 12 inches throughout the eastern portion of Montana. However, there are some great benefits to this wetter weather, including the ability to see beautiful flowers and a rich natural oasis.

Winters in Bozeman tend to be cold and snowy but not necessarily difficult to manage. Winter months tend to have an average temperature of between 32 and 25 degrees, with lows dropping into the 15 and 16 degree range in January and February. During the winter months, you can expect about 54 days of snow.

When it comes to summer, temperatures can reach an average high of 81 during July and August and sometimes as high as 100 in August, though that’s much less likely to occur. Most often, fall and spring temperatures will remain between 65 through 80 degrees. The highest months for precipitation are May and June, when about 15 days each month will be wet to some degree.

Does Bozeman Experience All 4 Seasons?

Yes, Bozeman experiences all four seasons, and it can be quite a lush and beautiful experience. During the early winter months of January and February, expect colder temperatures that drop into the 20s most days. You can also expect to see snow on the ground throughout these months, but most people will still be able to drive and navigate the area. Typically, an average low for the day will be about 15 degrees, with the highest up to 55 degrees, which makes it possible to truly enjoy winter and the bright sun that often comes with it.

When spring arrives, the area’s nickname, “Valley of the Flowers,” truly comes to life. The area is typically quite stunning. The moisture of winter, and the warmth of the sunny days in April and May, combine with the very fertile soil in the area to create quite the lush green setting with wildflowers and lots of cultivated areas developing.

When it comes to summers, temperatures can get pretty warm, though most days are around the 80s. There are a lot of sunny days during the summer months, and that makes for some of the best outdoor experiences.

The fall months can be an excellent time for exploring the region as well. Temperatures drop into the 60s most days, and the humidity tends to be less, especially on drier days. Fall brings with it beautiful changing leaf colors and crisp air into the evenings. It can snow in the fall, but it is not likely to be a significant amount of snow.

Bozeman’s climate makes it an enjoyable place to live. For those who enjoy the cold weather, there is enough snow most years for good skiing and sledding. Most outdoor winter activities can happen here without deeply fridged temperatures to manage. The ski season typically runs from the start to the middle of December through the beginning of April.

For most of the rest of the year, it’s possible to enjoy the outdoors as well. Hiking, boating, biking, and lots of other outdoor activities can occur thanks to the milder temperatures.

How Bad Are Winters in Bozeman?

As you consider where you plan to spend your winters, you may be wondering just how bad winter gets in Bozeman. The good news is that it typically is not a bad season to visit or to get outdoors to explore the area. January and February tend to be the coldest months, but temperatures hover around 15 to 20 degrees as lows on most days. There is some snow, but not nearly the snow (or the cold temperatures) that much of the northern states experience.

There is snow, though. While it may not be several feet of white powder, you can expect there to be several inches a week in snowfall. This creates the ideal outdoor winter wonderland for those who want to hike in the snow, do some snowshoeing, or just navigate the area for its numerous wintertime festivals. With limited wind and a more protected valley area, the winter months are mild, and that makes them easily one of the better regions in the northern states to live in, no matter what time of the year you plan to spend your time here.

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