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Outdoor dining in the Rockies can be beautiful, though cool. These restaurants offer an outdoor experience:
The Rainbow Ranch offers Riverside Barbecue s on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday nights from July 4 through Mid-September, This popular riverside dining option features an exceptional BBQ menu, outdoor fun with evening trail rides, horseshoes, and sand volleyball, plus a campfire and s'mores!
Across the lawn and up at the main lodge, the acclaimed Rainbow Ranch Restaurant also offers outdoor seating on the covered deck overlooking the Gallatin River. The menu features wild game, Montana steaks, and fresh seafood. To accompany your meal choose from among 650 selections on their extensive award winning wine list.
Across the road, the Corral also has some outdoor seating, for that local authentic Montana feel.
Olive B's, across from the Big Sky Chapel, seats approximately 25 diners outdoors on their patio. Enjoy the view of Lone Mountain AND the food.
The Bugaboo Cafe has a nice patio with a river view, though lunch is generally the meal to have outside at this local favorite. They often have a "themed" barbecue night on Thursdays during the summer.
The Wrap Shack in Westfork Meadows has become a popular local hot spot for a casual dinner and a few beers as the evening whiles away.
Also in Westfork, the Broken Spoke is also a popular spot for an after-work patio sit, with a great happy hour as well.
The Timbers at Moonlight and the Peaks at The Summit, also have outdoor dining areas. Given the higher altitude, it cools off quickly, though.
The Hungry Moose also has a nice deck for an outdoor lunch.
The pinnacle of outdoor dining in Big Sky is the Big Sky Food Festival. It's held outside at Buck's T-4 Lodge on the third Tuesday of July each year. All the Big Sky restaurants participate, setting up a booth and selling tasting portions of their best specialties and most fun food. The weather is usually ideal, and it's the event of the season for summertime Big Sky dwellers.