Home » 2000 Cross Country Road Trip

National Bison Range, MT

Monday, July 24, 2000 - 9:00am by Lolo
77 miles and 1.5 hours from our last stop


Stopping at the Bison Range seemed like a good idea on paper. However, after we got there, none of us really wanted to add the extra 2-hour scenic loop through the range onto an already 8-hour long driving day. Also, Herb, always the pragmatist, reminded us that we were going to see enough buffalo for a lifetime when we got to Yellowstone, so there was no need to seek them out here.

Wanting to do something to justify our stopping here, we drove the short 1.5 mile West Loop behind the Visitor Center, but there were no buffalo to be found. Back in the Visitor Center, the kids did manage to purchase a hat pin with the famous albino buffalo on it.

I know that we did not do this stop justice, and I'm sure that the Red Sleep Mountain Scenic Drive through the range would have been great, but it was just too much driving for one day. Perhaps we'll do it the next time we're passing through Montana.


The National Bison Range, in western Montana, consists of 18,500 acres of natural rolling prairie that was set aside as a National Wildlife Refuge in 1908.

Besides the herd of 350 to 500 bison that range here, there are elk, deer, pronghorn, black bear, and coyote. It is also home to over 200 species of birds, including eagles, hawks, meadowlarks, bluebirds, ducks, and geese.

The Red Sleep Mountain Drive takes you on a self-guided tour through the refuge with much wildlife viewing along the way. The drive is one-way and quite steep in places. Allow about 2 hours.

National Bison Range location map in "high definition"

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