The rounded, ancient peaks of the Sapphire Mountains create the east edge of this valley. The west edge is sharply defined by the Bitterroot Range, some of Montana's rockiest and most jagged peaks. And through it all runs the Bitterroot River, lined with cottonwoods that turn the valley into a ribbon of gold in the fall.
Set against this backdrop are towns ranging from richly historic to downright rustic, and large working ranches, where horses are still used to herd stock. In the Bitterroot, the Old West meets the New West.