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; 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; offers gay and lesbian adventure travel packages, including ranching vacations in Montana and backpacking trips in Yellowstone.

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.