Montana does not have the reputation of being the gay-friendliest state in the Union, especially in the wake of the Matthew Shepard murder in Laramie in 1998. But larger cities tend to have a gay scene of some kind, especially Missoula and Bozeman in Montana; and there is little for gay travelers to worry about. However, some of the more rural destinations are still rife with homophobia.
The International Gay and Lesbian Travel Association (IGLTA; tel. 800/448-8550 or 954/776-2626; www.iglta.org) is the trade association for the gay and lesbian travel industry, and offers an online directory of gay- and lesbian-friendly travel businesses and tour operators.
Many agencies offer tours and travel itineraries specifically for gay and lesbian travelers. Based in Red Lodge, Montana, OutWest Global Adventures (tel. 800/743-0458 or 406/446-1533; www.outwestadventures.com) offers gay and lesbian adventure travel packages, including ranching vacations in Montana and backpacking trips in Yellowstone.