You want seasons? Montana has all four of the original divisions of the year as determined by Mother Nature and the tilt in the Earth's axis. We don't have a "mudslide season", no "tornado season" either; the hurricanes are too far off to reach us and the simple thought of a Tsunami is ridiculous all the way up here in the mountains. If you're feeling spry, or even a little lazy, Missoula has something to offer you in any season that should keep the times entertaining and memorable.
The season of love. Birds are returning, bees are coming out, they are having relations with each other as we've all been told, and everybody and their dog (yeah, we have a lot of dogs here) are coming out of hibernation from their houses and apartments.
Spring time in Missoula is hands-down beautiful. The flowers and trees begin to bloom, the snow is melting, and the grass and bushes hidden all winter come out and begin to show their true colors after a long, cold winter. Mount Sentinel and Mount Jumbo (the ones with an M and an L on them respectively) are glowing a bright green before they move on to their summer-time yellow and brown, and the skies are mostly clear and sunny with patches of rain here and there. Oh, we still get some snow in the spring, and up until June some years, but not enough to fret as spring is here!
At this point in the year it helps to get outside and brush off all the dust that has collected on your shoulders during the winter chill.
If spring is the season of love, then summer must be the season of romance. What better way to get to know the people around you than to get outdoors and experience life without staying cooped up in a house? Summer time in Missoula has a great deal to offer any and everybody. From casual events where the town comes out in true form to high impact sports like mountain biking.
Summer in Missoula offers almost constant sunshine and warmth in the air, many places to stay cool and out of the sun as well as places to stay cool right under the sun. The temperature ranges from the upper 60s on the cooler, clouded days to the upper 90's in August when people seek out water at our numerous rivers and not so distant lakes.
Get out and have some fun, summer is here!
A season of change. The colors, the weather, the University is back in session, the snow birds are packing up to wait out the cold months down south, and snow is gathering on the surrounding mountain tops. This is the season when getting out your warm clothes from storage is an annual event, and the collection of firewood is pursued by those trying to fight the ever rising energy prices in the world. People will be gathering with friends and family to celebrate on the weekends, and pot-lucks are on the rise.
It is getting colder, the leaves are changing, and the smell of snow is beginning to drift out of the mountains. This time of year will begin to see crisper mornings that carry a layer of frost on the ground. The days are beginning to get shorter as the sun rises later and sets considerably earlier (10pm June compared to 6pm in October), all the while rain is beginning to fall more frequently as it builds up to the eventual big snow dump in the winter.
Get it in while the weather is still nice, because you'll be finding yourself indoors a whole lot more soon.
Is there a better time of year? It is a rhetorical question, but something going through the minds of those living in Missoula who are "praying for snow." The ski lifts begin running and the sledding hills are filling up with kids and adults alike. Christmas will be coming soon, and First Night Missoula is well under way to completion.
Snow, snow, come and stay; show us what we will do today. Sun wake us late in the morn', should we see you and not a storm. Wind billowing that cold smoke, whether on a mountain or in a valley we all agree it is a good joke.
Period of Record : 7/ 1/1948 to 12/31/2007
Percent of possible observations for period of record.