Montana Hunting Season: When Does it Start and What You Need to Know


Hunting is a popular activity in Montana, attracting thousands of hunters every year. However, to ensure that the hunting season is regulated and sustainable, the state has set specific guidelines for when hunting can take place.

Hunting Seasons In Montana

In Montana, hunting seasons vary depending on the game. The official dates are decided by the Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks Commission (FWP) and are announced well before the start of each season. Big game such as elk and deer typically have longer seasons than smaller animals like upland birds or waterfowl.

The Start Date Of Hunting Season In Montana

The exact start date of hunting season varies from year to year but generally begins towards the end of August or early September for archery hunters. Rifle season starts around mid-October and lasts until late November for most big-game species. Waterfowl season usually starts in late September through January while upland bird seasons run from early September to mid-January.

Important Reminders For Hunters

It’s important that all hunters understand that they must have a valid license and follow all regulations set forth by FWP during their hunt. This includes purchasing appropriate tags and permits for their intended prey species; following safe gun handling rules at all times; wearing orange clothing during rifle hunts; respecting private property boundaries; reporting any illegal activity witnessed while out on public lands promptly.


Montana offers abundant opportunities for hunters with its vast wilderness areas teeming with wildlife. Knowing when hunting season officially starts will be vital when planning your trip so you won’t miss out on a chance to bag your trophy animal legally! Remember always to adhere strictly to safety guidelines keep our environment protected as we enjoy this age-old practice!