A Treasured State
One place where you can do both is Montana. SmartMoney’s “Retire Here, Not There: Montana” gives you a good starter on the state. Here’s an excerpt on Bozeman (read the whole article here):
The first thing Bozeman has going for it: Its proximity to Yellowstone, only 90 miles to the South. (In sparse Montana, 90 miles is considered “down the road.”) But there are many other, more local charms. The town, which sits in the Gallatin Valley, is surrounded on all sides with majestic mountains. Within 45 minutes of town, residents have their choice of three excellent ski areas—Big Sky, Bridger Bowl and Moonlight Basin. Plus, the mountain areas near Bozeman have vast public lands that are great for hiking and mountain biking. The Gallatin and Yellowstone Rivers, both less than a half hour from downtown, are a fisherman’s paradise.
As the article points out, there are two seasons in Montana—winter and August. Becky and I love to ski, so to us it has tremendous appeal. I have a pretty good feel for the state too thanks to my brother-in-law, who is from Billings and went to Montana State in Bozeman. And Becky’s mom and dad, who have ridden their Harleys extensively through the Treasure State on their western bike trips, have written positive reviews.
If you visit the Yellowstone and Glacier National Parks, do some retirement intelligence gathering on Montana. You might want to live there someday.