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October 27, 2016 / mws

Top 10 Towns to Visit…#8 Cooke City, MT

8. Cooke City, Montana

Storm brewing in Cooke City

Storm brewing in Cooke City

The first time we arrived in the alpine village of Cooke City, it was stormy and the town looked mostly deserted except for dogs and 4-wheelers.  That night the storm became stronger and booming thunder resounded through the town and shook our hotel.  It was quite a welcome!

Cooke City gets a lot of storms and over 200 inches of snow in the winter.  It is the southern gateway to the spectacular Beartooth Pass. The town has retained it’s old west atmosphere. It is surrounded by forest, massive mountains and scenic valleys.  Each time we stay there, we find a new wilderness area to explore.  Cooke City is adjacent to the charming village of Silver Gate, Montana and is just a few miles from the northern entrance to Yellowstone National Park.

Cooke City Visitors Center

Cooke City Visitors Center

In Cooke City, outdoor enthusiasts will find lodging, restaurants, gift shops, a general store and an awesome bakery.  All are worth a visit.  It also has a small but very worthwhile Art Gallery and a small Visitor Center.  The  few local residents are authentic folks who have the privilege of making their living in one of the most beautiful locations in Montana.

Cooke City Moose

Cooke City Moose

Several times in our visits to Cooke City, we have encountered bears, moose, fox, pine marten and bison before we even  entered Yellowstone! To the east of Cooke City is the Chief Joseph Highway, another incredibly scenic road that has become a favorite along with the much loved Beartooth Highway to the north.

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Along the Chief Joseph Highway

When you stay in Cooke City to visit Yellowstone, the drive through the Lamar Valley will always be a highlight. With local attractions with names like “Stop the Car Trading Post” and “Bob’s Bearclaw Bakery”, how can you go wrong?

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