Montana Fun Adventures Tours (tel. 406/254-7180; www.montanafunadventures.com) offers historical tours of Billings and vicinity, as well as 2-day packages into Yellowstone National Park. Total Transportation (tel. 800/698-1778 or 406/252-1778; www.mttotaltransportation.com) offers trolley, carriage, and bus tours.
Though the Yellowstone River runs through the city, it is wide, busy, and often muddy. The best nearby fishing is in the Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area, 83 miles southeast of town. Fishing guides come and go pretty often in the Billings area; to find a local one, the best bet is to ask at the Base Camp, 1730 Grand Ave. (tel. 406/248-4555; www.thebasecamp.com).
Lake Hills Golf Club (tel. 406/252-9244; www.lakehillsgolf.com), EagleRock Golf Course (tel. 406/655-4445; www.eaglerockgolfcourse.com), and the Peter Yegen, Jr., Golf Club (tel. 406/656-8099; www.yegengolfclub.com) are the three 18-hole public golf courses in Billings, with greens fees of $25 to $42, not including carts. The par-3, 9-hole Exchange City Golf Course (tel. 406/652-2553) has greens fees of $10.
Nearby Parks & Nature Preserves
In town, there is a good multiuse trail system popular with joggers, walkers, and bikers. Contact Billings Parks & Public Lands (tel. 406/657-8371; www.prpl.info) for information.
An unusual side trip is to Pictograph Cave State Park (tel. 406/247-7342; www.pictographcave.org), where you can see cave paintings made by prehistoric people more than 4,500 years ago. There are more than 100 pictographs, in red and black pigments made from ashes, clay, and animal fat. The meaning of the designs is continually debated -- were they ceremonial, or perhaps celebrations of a successful hunt or battle (there are many images of shield-bearing warriors)? A short, but fairly steep, interpretive trail leads up to the caves, which are more like large stone alcoves than caves in the usual sense. They lie in a classic, sheer, broad sandstone canyon inhabited by rabbits and an occasional rattlesnake -- so stay on the trail. From Billings, take I-90 east to exit 452 and follow the signs for 6 miles. The park is open May 1 to September 30 daily from 9am to 7pm with shorter hours the rest of the year and an entrance fee of $5 per vehicle.
Locals go to nearby Lake Elmo State Park, 10 miles north of Billings on U.S. 87 (tel. 406/247-2955; www.fwp.mt.gov), for picnicking, swimming, windsurfing, fishing, and volleyball. Boat rentals and windsurfing lessons are available in the summer; gas-powered boats are prohibited. Entrance fee is also $5 per vehicle.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.