Summer sunsets in Missoula are incredible. What is the best way to enjoy a local sunset? I think the best way just might be with a picnic. Pick a location, pack a nice snack , and grab some drinks and then sit back and bask in the beauty.

Food and Drinks

While you can always pack your own picnic basket with food and drinks, sometimes it is nice just to have someone else make up the sandwiches for you. Missoula has a ton of great sandwich shops in town. For my picnic I chose to stop at Tagliare Delicatessen. Tagliare is a traditional delicatessen stocked with fine wine, cheeses, snacks and freshly made sandwiches. Their sandwiches even have edgy rock-band names like ‘Megadeath’ and ‘The Cure’. I grabbed some sandwiches, a  variety of cheeses, crackers and a fancy little four pack of canned mimosas.

If you decide to choose Tagliare for your picnic, be sure to stop by early enough in the day while they are still open.

Tagliare sandwiches and offerings

Picking the Perfect Spot

Picking the perfect location for your picnic and sunset watching is important.  There are many trails, and parks to choose from all around town.  However, Missoula is tucked in a valley, so  the best spot to watch the sunset is probably from the mountains. A short hike can give you an extraordinary view for your picnic and sunset viewing. This particular weekend I was feeling extra exhausted and didn’t have time to pick up hike-friendly shoes, so I took to Waterworks Hill. A quick climb up the hill gives you the best seats in the house. You can see the colors flush over Mount Sentinel, Mount Jumbo and the whole valley as the sun makes its descent.

Summer sunset over Waterworks Hill in Missoula

Just steps onto the trail and we crossed paths with a fawn, not an uncommon site in Missoula. Once you get to the top of the path, you’ll see the workings of a Missoula icon- the large white peace sign on the side of the mountain. All-in-all it was the perfect way to watch the summer sunset. If you do bring snacks and drinks, make sure to pack-out everything you packed-in!

Wildlife and Views from Waterworks Hill in Missoula

For more information on hiking in Missoula be sure to check out our hiking page.