Posted May 26, 2015
The name of the territory created on this date in 1864 comes from the Spanish word for “mountains.” And, indeed, there are plenty of mountains in the region – 100 or more named mountain ranges, most part of the Rocky Mountains.
Now that it is a state, some say that it is “Big Sky Country” – and that speaks to the topography (landforms) of the half of Montana that is not mountainous. The sky does indeed look perfectly huge arching over Montana's plains.
People joke that Montana is “empty,” as in “MT” – the state's abbreviation. It turns out that the state is one of the largest, but the population is one of the smallest. So the population density of Montana is almost 7 people per square mile. That's pretty thinly spread!
(New York City has 27 THOUSAND people per square mile! Even the whole state of New York has more than 400 people per square mile.)
Some of my favorite things about Montana are these:
- The Lewis and Clark Caverns
I have a special fondness for the first caves I ever toured!
- Glacier National Park
Gorgeous views and amazing wildlife!
- The Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument
I have to admit, there isn't that much to SEE at the site of this famous battle...but the docents were absolutely fabulous story-tellers!
- Yellowstone National Park
Always and forever my favorite national park...It has everything from stunning mountains to gorgeous waterfall, magnificent lakes to impressive wildlife, and of course the freakish and amazing and colorful geysers, volcanic formations, hot pools, and mud pots!
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