Big Sky Country in Southwest Montana, has lots to offer Fido and his family with its vast horizons and abundant landscape. The outdoor enthusiast will feel right at home as many properties can facilitate a fishing or whitewater trip or arrange for horseback riding for you and your family.
A recent trip with our two Directors of Barketing, Zoey and Mattie for Fido Friendly magazine, included three Fido-friendly properties all of which offered beautiful Montana sunsets and welcoming breezes.
The Bar N Ranch
The Bar N Ranch is located roughly six miles west of West Yellowstone, Montana, only ten minutes from the west entrance of Yellowstone National Park.
Resident wildlife and breathtaking views compliment the rustic, yet elegant, surroundings. Jetted spa tubs, wood-burning fireplaces, private outdoor hot tubs, and wireless internet are only a few of the added distinctions that highlight your stay.
The South Fork of the famed Madison River meanders through the two hundred acre ranch offering private access to guests of the ranch. Zoey and Mattie enjoyed frolicking off-leash with resident dog, Ranger.
Breakfast is included and served in the lodge. Choices include hearty French toast and simpler fare. Lucky for us to have reservations for dinner as they were booked the entire weekend. Travelers and guests alike look forward to the cuisine which is served in the rustic lodge dining room. Try the prawn and pear salad for starters and make the difficult choice for entrée. Your well-behaved dog is allowed alone in the cabin, so no need to rush your dining experience.
Spend the day in Yellowstone where your dog is allowed 100 feet from the paved roads and while in town, search out the Nordic trail where you and your dog can hike in all seasons but winter. www.rendezvousskitrails.com
Next stop, the Rainbow Ranch.
Located in the heart of Big Sky country and on the banks of the Gallatin River, the Rainbow Ranch Lodge is an intimate Montana guest ranch offering world-class luxury with relaxed elegance, personalized guest service and unrivaled ambiance.
The Fido-friendly Riverside Log Cabins overlooking the Gallatin River are a fisherman’s paradise. Ideal for a romantic getaway for two or a fly-fishing retreat for ten, the cabins range from two to five bedrooms and are all just a stone’s throw from the Gallatin River.
We were ensconced in the Cougar, one of the cabins on the river. We relaxed on our private porch in two Adirondack chairs while Zoey and Mattie rested beside us. There were horses on property and ‘the girls’ kept their eyes peeled for any excitement, but other than that, they were both content to rest by the river and listen to the quiet while we took in the beauty of the Gallatin National Forest across the river.
All riverside luxury rooms offer comfort and amenities with 1,000 thread count Egyptian cotton sheets and down comforters on handcrafted lodge pole beds with whirlpool baths and rosemary-lavender bath salts, satellite television, wood burning river rock fireplaces, and individual decks overlooking the Gallatin River.
Once a fishing camp, owner Patrick Hurd turned this lovely property into a fantastic retreat along with one of the best restaurants in the area. We enjoyed a fancy feast of Pan-Seared Breast of Duck and Cast Iron-Charred Ahi Tuna along with a bottle of local wine from the well-stocked wine cellar while listening to the fisherman at the locale table talk about ‘the one that got away.’
Last stop, Brackett Creek cabin, Bozeman, Montana.
Before we left home for our trip to Montana, we received by mail a wonderful packet of information from the folks at Mountain Home, Montana Vacation Rentals. In the packet were informative pieces of places to see while staying at one of their properties. This was such a useful packet that we have saved all the information for our next trip to Montana.
The Brackett Creek two bedroom Cabin is located at the edge of the Gallatin National Forest and sits on 118 acres in a secluded location between Bozeman and Livingston. There is a lawn area leading down to Brackett Creek and a small stream meanders through the front yard.
The home has a large deck with and was a perfect spot for all of us to watch for wildlife and birds. We did see wild turkeys strutting up the driveway one morning. Thankfully, Zoey and Mattie were still sleeping at the time.
We walked up the hill behind the cabin and greeted grazing horses each morning. The horses soon became accustomed to seeing us and would walk towards us as if to greet us themselves.
With access to miles of hiking/biking/horseback-riding trails and fishing on Brackett Creek, the only trouble you may find is in not having enough time to enjoy it all.
If you ask the locals, they will probably tell you that fall is their favorite time of year to visit southwest Montana. The weather’s great, the aspens are turning yellow, there’s fabulous hiking and excellent fishing (some say the best of the year), and you’ll feel like you have the entire state to yourself. So, make Montana your next travel destination for you and your dogs, you will come home with enough memories to last a lifetime and if you are like us, you might just start planning your next trip to Montana, as soon as you get home.
If You Go
Bar N Ranch
890 Buttermilk Road,
West Yellowstone, MT 59758
Full Breakfast included.
Resident dog: Ranger.
Seven one and two bedroom Fido-friendly cabins.
Dogs not allowed in main lodge.
Private outdoor hot-tub.
Room rate: $227+
Pet fee: $15 nightly for two dogs.
Dogs are permitted in Ranch cabins only and they ask that no cabin house more than 2 dogs at any one time.
Rainbow Ranch Lodge
42950 Gallatin Rd.
Gateway, MT 59730
Continental breakfast included.
Room rate: $195+
Pet fee: $30 per dog per night.
Located in Big Sky, Montana, twelve miles north of Yellowstone National Park and five miles south of Big Sky Ski Resort on Highway 191, the Rainbow Ranch offers luxury lodging and fine dining in Big Sky, Montana. Stay at the Rainbow Ranch Lodge and riverside log cabins for your Montana vacation, fly fishing retreat, Montana destination wedding, or honeymoon.
The award winning wine collection of over 10,000 bottles is Montana’s largest. Stored through the iron gates and weeping river rock archways of their cellar, “The Bacchus Room,” the wines frame an intimate setting for private parties and wine tasting for groups up to 14 people. Once you arrive at the Lodge be sure to ask Patrick for a Bacchus Room tour.
Mountain Home – Montana Vacation Rentals
P.O. Box 1204
Bozeman, Montana 59771
800-550-4589 & (406) 586-4589
Brackett Creek Cabin
Three night special $740+
Dogs allowed with permission
Beautiful, private forest setting up Bridger Canyon—over 100 acres bordering National Forest service land
Hiking or mountain biking from your back door—and skiing just minutes away!
Two bedrooms and one full bath, approximately 1200 square feet.
Brackett Creek Cabin can accommodate up to four guests.
Cozy living room (with beautiful rock fireplace)
Services available: The rental rate includes a weekly cleaning. Additional housekeeping, as well as catering services, and grocery shopping, can be arranged with a bit of prior notice.
Activities nearby: Besides hiking and mountain biking right out your front door, there is skiing at Bridger Bowl Ski area just minutes away. Fishing, horseback riding, golf, skiing, tours of Yellowstone National Park, and more is available! The towns of Livingston, Gardiner, and Bozeman have an amazing array of shops and restaurants as well.
Closest town and airport: It’s about thirty to thirty-five miles to Livingston, twenty miles to Bozeman and thirty miles to Bozeman’s Gallatin Field airport. Yellowstone National Park is an hour and a half away.