The Big Sky Mountain High Tour Itinerary - August 8 - 19, 2022
The Big Sky Mountain High Tour will be a 12-night excursion, and will start/end in Billings, MT, and will also include nightly stays in Spearfish, SD (two nights); Cody, WY; West Yellowstone, MT (three nights); Missoula, MT; Whitefish/Glacier Nat'l Park, MT (two nights); and Helena, MT, before returning back to our starting location in Billings. You will also have options for eastern ID, and the Alberta, Canada side of Glacier National Park, which is called Waterton Lakes National Park.
Connecting all of these great towns and locations together is a wonderful selection of roads that are absolutely perfect for two-wheeled exploration. Nothing too extremely technical, but with massive doses of scenery and history that are found no place else on earth. We know you'll definitely enjoy this fantastic two-wheeled adventure, and we would be thrilled to have you on board for 2022!!
Arrival Day - Monday, August 8 - Meet in Billings, MT.
We'll gather up at our modern lodge in Billings, and get settled in to kick off the beginning of our ride the next morning. During our first dinner together, we'll provide a complete overview of the tour, give everyone a chance to ask any questions, and then spend some time getting to know each other. Tour members who have chosen to trailer their bikes to Billings will be able to leave their trucks/trailers at our lodge there during the tour, as there is plenty of free, on-site parking. There are also options to fly to Billings and rent a motorcycle, or have your own motorcycle shipped there. Those options are explained below. Naturally, feel free to just saddle up your motorcycle and enjoy a ride to and from Billings from your home.
Day 1- Tuesday, August 9 - Ride to Spearfish, SD.
After breakfast, we'll pack our bikes and head east for a two night stay in the Black Hills region during the Black Hills Sturgis Motorcycle Rally. For the first leg of the ride, we'll have the wind at our backs as we motor across the rolling hills and grasslands of eastern Montana. On the way, we’ll have a chance to visit the Little Big Horn Battlefield National Monument. Continuing east, we will spend much of the day in the northern plains country, and traverse the Custer National forest before entering the very northeast corner of Wyoming and reaching the Black Hills of western South Dakota. If you budget your time appropriately, you may be able to take a quick optional route past the Devils Tower Monument before arriving in Spearfish. Once we reach Spearfish, we’ll tuck-in there for two nights.
Day 2 - Wednesday, August 10 - Free Day in Spearfish, Sturgis, Black Hills, and Badlands Regions.
Today is a free day, because as we mentioned previously, we will be spending two nights at the same hotel. This gives the group a chance to enjoy the Sturgis Rally experience, and also explore the Black Hills and Badlands regions, along with the very interesting towns in those areas. Our group will be riding through this area during the famous Sturgis Black Hills Rally, which will be celebrating its 82nd anniversary. If you've never experienced "Sturgis", now is your chance. You should expect to see a large number of fellow riders in this part of South Dakota during our stay. The free day ride options will include the chance to visit the city of Sturgis and check out its downtown district, along with a few of the well-known outlying towns. One of the highlights of this day, besides the great roads, will be an opportunity to see Mount Rushmore National Monument, along with the still-unfinished Crazy Horse Monument. Folks looking for additional riding miles may wish to head further east to explore the amazing Badlands National Park.
Day 3 - Thursday, August 11 - Ride to Cody, WY.
This will be a longer, yet very scenic day that takes us along the northern tier of Wyoming. First on tap --unless you visited it during the ride from Billings-- is a loop past Devil's Tower National Monument in northeastern Wyoming. Devil's Tower, a remnant from a long extinct volcano, was a prominent landmark used by the wagon trains of the old west. It became famous again in the 1970s after the release of the now-classic UFO movie, Close Encounters of the Third Kind. We'll continue westbound through Sheridan, and then climb our way into the Bighorn Mountains. We always get a thrill along the section or our route that rapidly drops down from the western slope of these mountains. From there, we push west into Cody for a one-night layover at a unique, historic hotel built by Buffalo Bill himself!
Day 4 - Friday, August 12 - Ride to West Yellowstone, MT.
Although this is not a particularly high-mileage riding day, we will tackle some of the best motorcycling routes to be found in all of North America. First up is the Chief Joseph Highway, which runs us north and connects us to the world famous Bear Tooth Pass Highway. Our plan is to tackle the 10,947-foot pass from the south, aiming for a turnaround point on the northern downhill side. Although the roadway should be clear, don't be surprised if there are remnants of last winter’s snow pack at the higher elevations off the road. We will travel the Bear Tooth in both directions, then turning back southwest, we will soon reach the eastern entrance to Yellowstone National Park. We’ll roll through this incredible park, which is situated atop a (currently) dormant, massive super-volcano, and end up back in Montana at our lodge just outside the park in West Yellowstone, where we’ll stay for three (3) nights.
Days 5 and 6 - Saturday/Sunday, August 13/14 - Free Day Rides in the Yellowstone and Grand Tetons Region.
These two free days will give you the option to go back and explore all of the unique geological features found nowhere else on earth except within the borders of Yellowstone National Park. Along with the geology, you're also very likely to see wildlife, including elk, deer, wolves, bison, moose and bears. And a trip to see Old Faithful Geyser is a must. When exiting the south side of the park, an option is to continue into the Grand Tetons region for a lunch break, and then loop back north through northeastern Idaho and return to our lodge. Combining a ride through Yellowstone with our suggested Tetons/Idaho route will make for unforgettable riding!
Day 7 - Monday, August 15 - Ride to Missoula, MT.
This will be the longest scheduled ride of the tour, with options for a shorter, less extensive ride on a mix of back roads and interstates. The longer main route will use all secondary roads and will tackle several passes, along with a couple of historic western towns, including Historic Virginia City. The route also crosses forest lands, including the Beaver and Bitteroot National Forests. The longer and shorter routes each cross the Continental Divide before bringing us into Missoula for a one night stay at a modern, full service lodge.
Day 8 - Tuesday, August 16 - Ride to Whitefish/Glacier, MT.
This riding day could rank up there as one of ‘Motorcycling's Top Ten.’ Our routes today have long been favorites of dedicated touring riders, with our first segment being a trip along the shoreline of the seemingly endless Flathead Lake, the largest body of water in MT. From there, we'll soon enter Glacier National Park and follow the eastern shore of Lake McDonald before climbing the amazing Going to the Sun Road to its climax at Logan Pass on the Continental Divide. As we near the pass, we’ll cruise past ice walls along the road’s cliff side, with trickling melt water running down shoulder in places. Herds of Big Horn sheep are not an uncommon sight on the flanks of nearby snow-capped peaks. Descending the east side of Logan pass, allow time for a break and some photos at St. Mary's Lake, one of the most beautiful lakes you'll ever see. We’ll enter a section of the Blackfeet Indian Reservation before returning back westbound on our loop to Whitefish, MT, where we will spend the next pair of nights.
Day 9 - Wednesday, August 17 - Free Day, Whitefish and Glacier National Park.
Maybe you’ll use this day to relax at our lodge, or stretch your legs with a hike? Or perhaps you’ll have the urge to get on your motorcycle and explore the area? And there’s certainly plenty to explore. You can ride back to Logan Pass and enjoy more time on the Going to the Sun Road, or maybe head north and cross the Canadian border into Alberta and visit Canada's version of Glacier, which is called Waterton Lakes National Park. It may seem hard to believe, but many folks consider Waterton Lakes even more beautiful and secluded than what we have on the U.S. side of the border. Go check it out and decide for yourself. Please note that if you intend to enter Canada, you'll need to have a valid passport with you!
Day 10 - Thursday, August 18 - Ride to Helena, MT.
We'll saddle up and depart from Whitefish heading southeast and follow a series of scenic routes through the Flathead and Lolo National Forests. Along the way, we will be treated to the true essence of Montana's Big Sky country, as the road weaves and rolls across the vast, sweeping hills and grasslands of central Montana. We'll have one last traverse of the Continental Divide, ending up back on its eastern side, before arriving in Helena for a one night layover.
Day 11 - Friday, August 19 - Ride to Billings, MT.
Our last riding day brings us back across the high rolling grasslands and endless prairies of central Montana as we enjoy a relaxing cruise back to our tour's starting point in Billings. Upon arrival, we’ll kick off our group farewell dinner and say good-bye to our newest bunch of lifelong riding friends. After the final "good nights" we'll head off to sleep that evening with smiles and the peaceful afterglow of our Big Sky Mountain High adventure...
Note: Total trip mileage including Free Day options is approximately 2,650 miles, with the longest riding day at approximately 370 miles. Daily mileages of 200-250 miles are typical.
This is a challenging excursion intended for experienced touring riders. It is not suitable for novice or beginning riders.
Motorcycle Rental & Shipping, Vehicle Parking, and Trip Resources Information:
Motorcycle Rental - We recommend and have used EagleRider, which is one of the largest motorcycle rental companies in the world, and has a location in a few towns in MT and surrounding states. Visit: www.eaglerider.com for more information. However, feel free to research and utilize any other rental company that you wish.
Motorcycle Shipping - We recommend and have used Federal Motorcycle Transport. They are the premier motorcycle shipping company in the U.S.A., and they have shipped dozens of motorcycles used on our tours. They can be reached at: (800) 747-4100, x2217, or visit: www.funtransport.com. Federal can suggest various motorcycle pick-up and drop-off locations that are suitable for your specific needs. You can also research and utilize any other shipping companies that work best for you.
Vehicle Parking in Billings - Our hotel in Billings, MT, offers ample, free on-site parking for your motorcycle hauling vehicles/trailers.
Trip Resources - Professional tour leaders, custom-designed Official Tour Packets, state highway road maps, selected travel literature, and commemorative apparel are all included in the cost of this tour. Your tour leaders will handle all applicable lodging and meal arrangements, as well as evening dinner meetings and ongoing communication of trip information to participants. Chase vehicles are NOT available on this tour.
Hotels: 12 nights of accommodations.
Dinners: The following five (5) dinners are included in the price of the tour: Arrival night in Billings; first night in Spearfish; first night in W. Yellowstone; first night in Whitefish; final night in Billings. Dinners are a mix of buffets and plated dinners.
Breakfasts: 11 breakfast, which are a mix of buffets and plated breakfasts.
Single Occupancy Room: $4,495 per person
Double Occupancy Room: $3,175 per person
To Reserve Your Space on this Tour:
We are currently accepting reservation deposits. A $500 per person deposit is required to reserve a space on all FC Tours. Spaces on this tour are limited, and are available first come, first served.
The date we receive your deposit is when your reservation is locked-in. Once the tour is filled, we will have a Stand-By List (note: deposits are not required for people who are on the Standby List). Please send deposit checks or money order to:
Frank Covucci Tours
P.O. Box 158
Pickerington, Ohio 43147.
All payments are fully refundable if you should need to cancel through: MAY 7, 2022.
Please note that tour plans, dates, accommodations, meals and tour prices may be subject to changes due to circumstances beyond our control.
Our tours are structured so that each rider must purchase their space for the ENTIRE length of the tour. Sorry, partial tour bookings cannot be accommodate