Most Hebgen Lake establishments shut down from late September until early May because of snowfall. When West Yellowstone is booked up or seems too hectic, these resorts can be a good place from which to stage trips into Yellowstone National Park.
Kirkwood Resort & Marina (11505 Hebgen Lake Rd., 406/646-7200 or 877/302-7200, www.kirkwoodresort.com, cabins $79–119) is on Hebgen Lake and rents cabins, tepees ($25), RV sites, and boats. This resort does stay open year-round. On Highway 191, just south of where Highway 287 comes in, the Madison Arm Resort (406/646-9328, www.madisonarmresort.com, $130–150) has log cabins, larger prefab cottages, an RV park, lakefront tent sites, and a marina.
Yellowstone Holiday (16990 Hebgen Lake Rd., 877/646-4242, www.yellowstoneholiday.com, cabins $67–115) is on a flat grassy patch of land between the road and Hebgen Lake about 13 miles northwest of West Yellowstone. Although it’s mainly an RV park, there are also some cute cabins (bring your own linens, towels, and cooking utensils).
Parade Rest Guest Ranch (7979 Grayling Creek Rd., West Yellowstone, 406/ 646-7217 or 800/753-5934, www.paraderestranch.com, $190 per person per day, all-inclusive, lower rates for children) caters to anglers and their families. Although fishing is a major focus, this is a traditional guest ranch with daily guided horseback rides. Parade Rest, which is located near Hebgen Lake, is a well-established guest ranch with close ties to many local fishing guides. (It’s best to arrange for guide service well in advance.)
Firehole Ranch (11500 Hebgen Lake Rd., 406/646-7294, www.fireholeranch.com, $365 per person per day and up, includes meals and all activities except guided fishing) is a luxurious Orvis-endorsed fishing-oriented vacation ranch, with in-house fishing guides and a full complement of other recreational activities.
Hebgen Lake Mountain Inn (15475 Hebgen Lake Rd., 406/646-5100 or 866/400-4564, $125) has newer motel rooms with full kitchens on a bluff across the road from the lake and the USS Happy Hour Bar.
© W.C. McRae & Judy Jewell from Moon Montana, 7th Edition