State Series: Montana and Idaho

Tyrannosaurus Skull at Bozeman Airport By Tim Evanson from Washington, D.C., USA, United States of America (tyrannosaur skull - bozeman airport - 2013-07-02) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Since the creation of the first airport in 1909 by Wilbur Wright, cities in the United States have come together to create one of the most expansive airport systems in the world. Over the next few months, our writers have taken an in-depth look to see what airports each state has to offer, what its history entails, and what changes we can expect in the future that will continue to shape the airline industry.

In the Northwestern part of United States lies the states of Idaho and Montana. Idaho is well known for its agricultural industry, home of the famous Idaho potato, while Montana has seen a recent boom in the oil industry. Both states also have widely spread out populations, which can take any trip a long journey by road. As such, there are several airports in both states that see large use.

MAJOR AIRPORTS

Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport – Bozeman, MT (BZN)

Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport is located to the Northwest portion of downtown Bozeman. The airport recently became the busiest airport in Montana with 879,221 passengers passing through the airport in 2013. Bozeman Airport was given the Yellowstone name in 2011 to associate it with the nearby Yellowstone Park, and given international status in 2011, with a Customs Border Patrol (CBP) facility opening onsite.

Presently the airport has one terminal with eight gates. Three gates were added as part of a terminal expansion in 2011, which also added more retail options for passengers. Presently the airport is served by American, Delta, Frontier, United, Allegiant, Delta Connection, Horizon for Alaska Airlines, and United Express. Service is available to most west coast hubs, with seasonal service added to destinations such as Chicago, New York’s LaGuardia and Dallas/Ft. Worth.

Boise Airport – Boise, ID (BOI)

Boise Airport, the busiest airport in the state of Idaho, is located on the southern edge of the city of Boise. The city served as a stop on the first commercial airmail service in the United States in 1926. In 2013, the airport opened a new control tower, the tallest in the Pacific Northwest. In 2015 the airport served 1,487,765 passengers, by far the busiest in the state. The airport is a joint-use military base, with a National Air Guard base on the south side of the field.

Boise Airport is served by one terminal that was remodeled in the mid 2000’s, and has two concourses, B and C. Service is concentrated to the west coast, with seasonal service to Chicago being the farthest East city served from Boise. Presently Horizon for Alaska, Allegiant, American, Delta Airlines, Southwest Airlines, United, United Express, and Delta Connection serve the airfield, with Alaska starting non-stop service to Seattle in June of 2017.

Billings Logan International Airport – Billings, MT (BIL)

Billings Logan International Airport, the second busiest in the state, is located on the North edge of the city of Billings. Previously the busiest airport in the state, the airport currently has three runways and a relatively new control tower. Originally the field was named Billings Municipal Airport, but the name was changed in 1957 when airport manager Dick Logan passed away. The airport was given the international moniker in 1971.

The airport has one terminal with five gates and serves as a hub for Cape Air, whom operates Essential Air Service (EAS) service to Glasgow, Glendive, Havre, Sidney, and Wolf Point. The airport also sees service from Allegiant, Horizon for Alaska, Delta, United, Delta Connection, and United Express.

OTHER AIRPORTS

Missoula International Airport, in the Western portion of the state, is the third busiest airport in Idaho with year-round services to Denver, Minneapolis, Salt Lake City, Seattle and Portland. Glacier Park International Airport, located in Kalispell, MT in the Northwest of the state sees year round services to Denver, Seattle, Las Vegas, Minneapolis, and Salt Lake City.

Idaho Falls Regional Airport, located in the east of Montana, serves the Idaho Falls area. Currently the airport has year round service to Las Vegas, Phoenix, Salt Lake City, and Denver. Lewiston-Nez Perce County Airport, in the northwest of the state, has service to Boise, Seattle, and Salt Lake City.

Daniel Morley

Daniel Morley

Daniel has always had aviation in his life; from moving to the United States when he was two, to family vacations across the U.S., and back to his native England. He currently resides in South Florida and attends Nova Southeastern University, studying Human Factors in Aviation. Daniel has his Commercial Certificate for both land and sea, and hopes to one day join the major airlines.
Daniel Morley