Where to park it around Bozeman.
Montana’s weather is notoriously volatile—not to mention brutal—so when the sun comes out, it makes sense for you to get out, as often and for as long as possible. On those bright, warm days in fall and spring, take advantage of Bozeman’s many parks by setting up a hammock, getting the dog out for a jaunt, or studying under the trees. Remember to follow all posted leash rules, pick up after your pup, and be considerate of other park-goers.
This northside park has picnic tables for studying, lush green grass for napping or Frisbee-throwing, and basketball courts for working up a sweat. On site is a charming old building that’s available to rent, on the cheap, for meetings, receptions, seminars, or dance parties. In the winter, the city floods the park for outdoor skating.
Bogert has tennis courts, a pool and playground, a huge expanse of grass, and a creek flowing behind the pavilion. Just a few blocks south of Main Street, on the east side of downtown, this park is a hub for local events—you’re sure to wind up here for something throughout the year.
Practice fly-casting into the pond, wander around the trails, or hang out under the large pavilion at a picnic table. This park has a small fenced-in area for letting dogs run and swim, plus a climbing boulder for aspiring ascendants to practice their moves in a low-pressure environment. For something more vigorous, round up all your pals for a rousing beach-volleyball game in the sand court.
Just a few blocks north of campus, Cooper Park is ideal for studying. Large shade trees provide prime dog-watching opportunities, and plenty of picnic tables make for excellent impromptu gatherings.
Gallatin County Regional Park
This expansive park has multiple ponds, a fenced-off dog park, looping trails, a pump track, and a climbing boulder. It’s basically a multi-sport destination in and of itself, and it makes for a great detour after stocking up on dorm-room essentials at Target or Costco.
Langhor Gardens is a community garden with a climbing boulder—what could be more Bozeman than that? The Gallagator trail crosses through the park and will take you all the way downtown, and a nearby creekside bench makes for a nice respite on a stressful day.
Adjacent to the Bozeman Public Library, connected to Peets Hill, and providing access to different trail options, Lindley has it all. In the warm weather you’ll find students and locals alike slinging hammocks and slacklines between the trees, and the trails around Lindley are groomed for skate skiing in the winter, so it’s a year-round attraction. After lounging, head west on Main Street for downtown happy hour or coffee.
If disc golf is your thing, this is your spot. Smack-dab in the middle of Bozeman, Rose Park’s course isn’t overly challenging, but you can play a round between morning and afternoon classes and can reach the park easily on your bike.
Southside Park is basically an extension of campus. Depending on the season, you can be serving up goals or aces. This 6.5-acre park has tennis courts in fall and spring and an ice rink in winter. It’s a great place to blow off restless energy between classes, no matter the season.
Bozeman’s largest and newest park, Story Mill has it all. With 3-4 miles of trails, a climbing boulder, an adventure playground, an enclosed dog park for pups to roam and play fetch, an amphitheater, community center, and several open-air pavilions, if you’re living in Bozeman, you’re sure to end up at Story Mill.