Western Montana boasts breathtaking landscapes filled with lush alpine forests, sweeping valleys and mountain meadows full of wildflowers. There are many ways to roam Glacier Country by foot, by water and by air. Experience a state of awe with a bird’s-eye view during a one-of-a-kind aerial adventure tour. From tranquil hot air balloon rides to the adrenaline rush of skydiving, there’s a trip for everyone. Take to the skies in Glacier Country—you’ll be glad you did.

Make a treasured memory in Western Montana’s Glacier Country. Photo: Mountain Butterfly


Soar up, up and away on a hot air balloon ride. Be carefree in the crisp mountain air and enjoy the sheer beauty of Glacier Country from above—there’s not a bad seat in the basket! A mellow sunrise flight is an unbeatable way to start the day, and one of the calmest times to ascend. Flights are typically one to two hours long. Float over the Flathead Valley taking flight from Kalispell with 2FlyUs between June and September.

Find new perspective in a hot air balloon. Photo: 2FlyUs


Taking flight in Glacier Country is one of the best ways to explore our vast terrain. See the expanse of land dotted with backcountry glacial lakes you’d otherwise spend a day hiking into, survey many of our charming small mountain towns and try to catch a glimpse of wildlife, all from an aerial perspective. Flights are one to one and a half hours long. Blue Goose Aviation offers scenic aerial tours over the Mission Mountains, Flathead Valley and Flathead Lake. Red Eagle Aviation is the only company permitted to fly tours inside Glacier National Park, and separately can also fly to other iconic backcountry destinations like the Chinese Wall inside The Bob Wilderness. Or, take to the skies in a float plane on the Glimpse of Glacier Tour with Backcountry Flying Experience. This one-hour flight around the Upper Flathead Basin flies over several glaciers, and 30 to 50 alpines lakes.

Our professional and experienced guides will ensure your comfort. Photo: Montana Air Adventures


If you’re looking for an adventure that’ll get your adrenaline pumping, skydiving in Western Montana is not to be missed. Glacier Country sets the scene for a picture-perfect jump: soak in the 360-degree grandeur of mountain peaks, sparkling lakes and sweeping meadows during the 40-second freefall. Skydive Whitefish offers tandem jumps from an altitude of 10,000 feet, above the quintessential mountain town of Whitefish between June and October. The oldest continuous skydiving festival in the U.S. is located in Marion outside Kalispell. The Lost Prairie Boogie is a week full of jumps for skydivers, games and shenanigans. Meadow Peaks Skydiving offers tandem jumps during the festival and throughout the season, from 12,500 or 16,000 feet elevation.

Fall in love with skydiving. Photo: Skydive Whitefish


For those of you hesitant to jump in a small plane—or out of one—here are a few options to satisfy your curiosity of Western Montana’s aerial adventures, while keeping your feet firmly planted on the ground. The Smokejumper Visitor Center in Missoula is the nation’s largest smokejumper base. Displays give you a glimpse into the life of a smokejumper. You’ll learn about smokejumper gear, cargo and aircraft. The Missoula Smokejumper Visitor Center is open from Memorial Day to Labor Day, then by appointment only. The Museum of Mountain Flying, also in Missoula and very near to the Smokejumper Visitor Center, focuses on the history of mountain flying in the Northern Rockies. Displays include multiple vintage aircraft, clothing, photographs and personal narratives and diaries. In Fortine, get up close and personal with two dozen vintage aircraft including the world’s only flight-ready Mk 47 Seafire at the Stonehenge Air Museum.  

If you visit in the spring you may even see smokejumpers taking practice jumps. Photo: Smokejumper Visitor Center

Please note: We ask that all our visitors and residents Recreate Responsibly by being mindful of the following: practice physical distancing; know before you go; plan ahead; play it safe; leave no trace; tread lightly; and help build an inclusive outdoors.

May 29, 2023

Related: Aerial Tours, Bitterroot Valley, Family Fun, Flathead Corridor, Fortine, GNP Surrounding Area, Guided Tours, Kalispell, Missoula, Montana, Museums, Outdoor Fun, Seeley Lake, Seeley-Swan Corridor, Summer Fun, Vacation


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