PureWest: A Lifestyle & Real Estate Blog



Wide open spaces, rural properties and a little attention to dark-sky lighting can make your Montana home a stargazing haven
Posted: April 21, 2024 by Erin Duval

Nestled beneath the skies of Montana and Idaho lie a treasure trove of celestial wonders awaiting discovery. From rugged mountain peaks to vast prairie landscapes, Montana and Idaho offer unparalleled canvases for stargazing enthusiasts to explore the mysteries of the universe, many of which can be viewed from the comfort of your own backyard.

332 Powder Run | Eureka, Montana | 4 Bedrooms, 3 Bathrooms | 3,784 Sq Ft
MLS# 30000863 | $1,450,000
Tiffany Rietema | (406) 212-4252 | Tiffany@PureWestMT.com

Montana and Idaho both offer remote and sparsely populated regions making them ideal destinations for stargazing, with minimal light pollution allowing for crystal-clear views of the night sky. There are specific destinations where the stargazing is amongst the best in the world including International Dark Sky Park-designated Glacier National Park, the vast undeveloped Bob Marshall Wilderness Complex, and the wide-open range lands of eastern Montana. The Central Idaho Dark Sky Reserve stretches across 1,400 square miles and Idaho is also home to a designated International Dark Sky Park at Craters of the Moon National Monument and Preserve.


NHN Griffin Creek Road | Marion, MT | 640 Acres

MLS# 30022855 | $2,176,000

Jason Hyndman | (406) 253-9008 | Jasonh@purewestmt.com


Many homes on spacious lots are far enough from the glare of city lights to provide great opportunities to scan the heavens without having to stray far. To avoid excess exterior light, consider dark-sky friendly lighting strategies, such as directing lighting downward to illuminate only what is needed, using low lumen levels and low Kelvin ratings (warm color lighting), and considering outdoor lights on timers and dimmers.   


250 Pete's Way | Big Sky, MT | 3 Bedrooms, 3 Bathrooms | 3,914 Sq Ft

MLS# 383420 | $3,495,000

Lynn Milligan | (406) 581-2848 | Lynne@purewestmt.com


Throughout the year there are myriad celestial phenomena to look forward to seeing. Each month, simply following the cycle of the moon can connect you with our planet’s closest neighbor. The charm of the full moon is on display each month, roughly during the third week of the month in 2024. This year, there will be four “super moons,” when the satellite is at the closest point of its orbit during the full moon. A supermoon can appear up to 17% larger than a regular full moon and is often considerably brighter. The full moons in August, September, October and November will be considered supermoons.  


7 Soaring Eagle Road | Ennis, MT | 3 Bedrooms, 2 Bathrooms | 2,438 Sq Ft

MLS# 380513 | $1,175,000

Jenny Rohrback | (406) 868-3175 | Jenny@purewestmt.com


One of the most awe-inspiring wonders of space is the Aurora Borealis, or Northern Lights. During times of high solar activity, geomagnetic storms around the north pole cause brilliant flares of green, orange, and red light waves to dance along the horizon. Montana and Idaho's northern latitude and long winter nights provide ample opportunities to spot the aurora with a little planning. The years 2024 and 2025 are expected to have high aurora activity beginning this fall, so get ready for some late nights!


24 Madison Lane | Red Lodge, MT | 4 Bedrooms, 3 Bathrooms | 4,232 Sq Ft

MLS# 343204 | $2,250,000

Julie A Magnus | (406) 672-1164 | Jamagnus@purewestmt.com


For those looking to delve deeper into the cosmos, observatories and astronomy clubs offer opportunities for education and exploration. The University of Montana's Blue Mountain Observatory and the Montana Learning Center's Sky Center are just two examples of institutions dedicated to sharing the wonders of the universe with the public. In Idaho, a state-of-the-art observatory provides unobstructed views of the night sky in Bruneau Dunes State Park.


3213 District Two Road | Bonners Ferry, ID | 4 Bedrooms, 2 Bathrooms | 2,880 Sq Ft 

MLS# 20240139 | $939,900 

Nedra Kanavel | (208) 610-4624 | Nedra@purewestid.com


Living in the Rocky Mountain west means being closer to the night skies than most individuals living in the United States! With a better chance to see extraordinary celestial phenomena, as well as having a front row seat to the Milky Way and every phase of the moon, having a home with great stargazing opportunities will elevate your evening enjoyment immensely. Contact your PureWest agent today to see what properties might offer you the best view of the heavens!


644 Stone Creek Loop | Corvallis, MT | 3 Bedroom, 3 Bathroom | 4,368 Sq Ft

MLS# 30021051 | $2,222,222

Bobbi Lockhart  | (406) 880-0117 | Bobbi@purewestmt.com


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