HISTORIC HOTELS RE-OPEN

Lake Yellowstone Hotel, one of the world’s grandest park hotels, has now completed a 2 year $28m renovation and Canyon Lodge will undergo a massive redevelopment will see three new lodges open this summer and ultimately 5 lodge buildings featuring wood and stone will provide 400 guest rooms replace outdated cabins and new bike and hiking paths will be added. www.yellowstonenationalparklodges.com

Historic Sheridan Inn, once home to Buffalo Bill and his Wild West Show auditions, is also set to re-open its doors for overnight guests and diners. This four star hotel will feature western themed rooms, such as a Sitting Bull and Annie Oakley room, and a world-class restaurant. www.sheridanwyoming.org

JACKSON HOLE MOUNTAIN RESORT TURNS 50 – BORN TO BE WILD

‘The Big One’ is now officially in its 50th year. Celebrations are already underway with the release of the ‘Born to Be Wild’: the first video in a series of six to roll out leading up to December 19th when the resort will be launching into full birthday celebration mode. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OqcT_zn_-4Q Five more to come, so stay tuned!

The new Aerial Adventure Ropes course is now open at JHMR. The course features a new type of adventure on an elevated course. Great for kids and adults alike, the ropes course is a network of zip lines, balance beams, cargo nets and other challenges- all suspended 25 feet above the ground. The courses offer a range of features with varying levels of difficulty. Tickets can be purchased separate or as part of the Grand Adventure pass that includes an aerial tram ride and a $15 dining credit.

And getting there is now even easier with the expansion of United’s service into Jackson from Houston, LA, San Francisco and Chicago. www.jacksonhole.com

WILDLIFE ENTHUSIASTS GO WILD FOR THE PATH OF THE PRONGHORN

Pinedale, Wyoming, a majestic landscape of meandering rivers, sagebrush valleys and glacial lakes, surrounded by towering Gros Ventre and Wind River Mountain ranges is where wildlife enthusiasts are witnessing one of the world’s most exciting cultural phenomenons; the Path of the Pronghorn. It is one of the last long distance animal migrations in the U.S. Each spring and fall, a particular herd of pronghorn migrate 200 miles from their summer grounds inGrand Teton National Park back to winter just south of Pinedale. www.visitpinedale.org.

CRAZY ABOUT MONTANA www.visitmt.com

Big Sky Welcomes You Year-Round

Big Sky Resort offers an array of year-round activities to make your visit to the Yellowstone area even more exciting.  Choose from ziplines, a high ropes course, giant swing, bungee trampoline or climbing wall in the summer or dogsledding, a tube park, snowshoe tours, ice climbing, snowmobile and snowcoach tours, skiing, and sleigh rides in winter.  Tours in nearbyYellowstone National Park are just a short drive away from the Resort. For details see www.bigskyresort.com.

Ski and Bike More Whitefish

Whitefish Mountain Resort’s new Flower Point chairlift and corresponding runs are open for the current 2015 ski season granting additional access to its north side ski area. Known for epic views into Glacier National Park, consistent snow coverage and great early and late skiing, the expansion adds 200+ acres of lift-served skiing, six new intermediate runs, connector trails and a fixed-grip triple chairlift.

The Resort also added 5 miles (8 km) of mountain bike trails to its summer activity options. Ranging from expert and technical to old school trails, these trails were built by professional trail builders and range from 0.34 km for premiere technical riding to the 4.09 km trail following the ridge and are accessible via the scenic chairlift going up and a stoked ride coming down. For more information, explore www.SkiWhitefish.com.

Explore Montana’s Bale Trail

An assortment of creative and amusing sculptures made of hay and strawawait youalong a 22 mile routein central Montana.  This one day event held is in September but the bales are kept on display for weeks following the official judging so you can enhance your visit to the charming small towns along the route.  www.montanabaletrail.com.

Glamping at Glacier

Located only 10 minutes from Glacier National Park, enjoy unique lodging – canvas tents – with a variety of choices such as deluxe, suite, safari, tipi and tree house. Enjoy the wild, without giving up the comforts of home! For more information on the tents, packages and rates, explore www.GlacierUnderCanvas.com

Historic Recognition for Beartooth All-American Road – Yellowstone Country 

The scenic Beartooth All-American Highway, linking the towns of Red Lodge and Cooke City, MT (and the northeast entrance of Yellowstone National Park) is now listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Named the “Red Lodge – Cooke City Approach Road District”, this 68-mile highway is nationally significant as an example of road construction, that substantially increased recreational development and tourism in the region as well as its distinctive engineering and high-altitude road construction. The National Register is the nation’s official list of historic places worthy of preservation. www.BeartoothHighway.com

Crown of the Continent MapGuide

Following on the success of the 2008 original Crown of the Continent MapGuide, a new, updated version is now available with new content and photos. Montana, Alberta and British Columbia developed the Crown of the Continent MapGuide in an effort to tell the geographical, cultural and heritage relationship that exists in the area surrounding Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park. Developed in cooperation with the National Geographic Society, this MapGuide and its companion website, provides an understanding of the diverse natural and cultural heritage of the region, which includes rugged peaks, glacier-carved valleys, native prairie and sparkling waters of the Rocky Mountain Range and two World Heritage Sites. For more information or to request a MapGuide, go to www.CrownoftheContinent.net

SAVOUR SOUTH DAKOTA www.travelsouthdakota.com

75th Anniversary Sturgis Motorcycle Rally

This year celebrates the 75th anniversary of the world-renowned Sturgis Motorcycle Rally; called America’s biggest party with big name bands, entertainment, vendors, great riding, and motorcycle racing. Dates: August 3-9, 2015 www.sturgismotorcyclerally.com

Crazy Horse Memorial Volksmarch

The Crazy Horse Volksmarch is the most popular organized hike in the United States. It is a 10K hike to the arm of the world’s largest mountain carving in progress. Crazy Horse will be hosting their annual spring and fall (autumn) Volksmarch events on June 7-8, 2015 and on September 27, 2015 www.crazyhorsememorial.org

50th Annual Custer State Park Buffalo Roundup: Named Top Event in USA for 2015

September 24-26, 2015. On Friday, feel the thunder and watch as cowboys, cowgirls and park staff round up Custer State Park’s 1,300 head of buffalo at the 50th Custer State Park Buffalo Roundup. After the roundup, watch park staff sort, brand and vaccinate the animals for the November sale. Enjoy the weekend Buffalo Roundup Arts Festival Thursday afternoon through Saturday. The Custer State Park Buffalo Roundup was named by the American Bus Association (ABA) as the Top Event in the USA for 2015. www.custerstatepark.info

Ghost Canyon Dude Ranch

The Ghost Canyon Dude Ranch is South Dakota’s newest guest ranchwith the capability to host 4-20 people per week. All meals and modern lodging will be included as well as horseback riding, tours of the hills, campfires, movies under the stars and much more. Located about 3.35km from Custer State Park on Highway 36. www.ghostcanyonranch.com

NAVIGATE LEGENDARY NORTH DAKOTA www.ndtourism.com

North Dakota State Parks celebrate 50 years

The North Dakota Parks and Recreation Department oversees 13 state parks hosting numerous festivals and events throughout the year. This year they celebrate 50 years with special events at various parks May 1 – September 26.Events will feature entertainment, travelling exhibits, interpretive programs and complimentary food and refreshments. www.parkrec.nd.gov

Passion for Paddling On The Missouri and Boating on the Red River

Paddle On is a local Bismarck/Mandan business renting and selling stand-up paddle boards, kayaks and canoes. Visitors can experience the serenity and unmatched beauty of many miles of the Missouri River, small rivers, and lakes in North Dakota through this unique rental service. www.paddleonnd.com . The Boathouse on the banks of the Red River in downtown Grand Forks also serves as a rental location for canoes, kayaks, stand-up paddleboards and bikes. It offers a programming headquarters to promote and educate users about these activities and a location for river-based recreational events. Some of the opportunities will include fitness classes, floating picnics, group paddles and kayak polo. www.bhonthered.org

Medora Musical Celebrates 50 years

The 2015 season will mark the 50th Anniversary Celebration of the Medora Musical, the “Greatest Show in the West.” Since the first show in 1965, the Medora Musical has unforgettably showcased the history of U.S. President Theodore Roosevelt, the North Dakota Badlands and the spirit of the American West. The Medora Musical is also one of the longest playing shows anywhere in the world. www.medora.com

 

Fargo Air Museum Opens a New Wing

The new expansion is home to a variety of aircraft. The focal point of the wing is a B-25 Mitchell, donated by Gerry Beck, a founding member of the Museum, with the hope of creating an interactive diorama to share WWII history and stories of the Doolittle Raiders. The Doolittle Raiders were a group of 80 men who risked their lives on a World War II bombing mission on Japan after the attack on Pearl Harbor. www.fargoairmuseum.org

MICE CONTACTS FOR THE REAL AMERICA STATES: 

MONTANA: Marlee Iverson miverson@mt.gov

NORTH DAKOTA: Fred Walker fwalker@nd.gov

SOUTH DAKOTA: Maureen Droz Maureen.Droz@travelsouthdakota.com

WYOMING: James Scoon james.scoon@wyo.gov

IN AUSTRALIA/ NEW ZEALAND: Caroline Davidson caroline@davcomm.com.au

GETTING THERE

Qantas offer flights from Australia to LA, while Virgin Australia flies from Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane to LA and San Francisco. United and Delta Air Lines has direct services from Sydney to Los Angeles with onward connections to the Real America States:

delta.com

qantas.com

unitedairlines.com.au

virginaustralia.com.au

WHEN TO GO

Summer in the “Real America” runs from the beginning of June to the end of September; snow sports are best enjoyed from December to April.

WILD ABOUT WYOMING www.wyomingtourism.org

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