MDT conducted a corridor planning study on MT 86. The limits of the study began at reference post (RP) 1.95 at the intersection of MT 86 and Story Mill Road, and extended northeasterly to the intersection of MT 86 and US 89 (RP 37.5) for an approximate length of 35.5 miles. The roadway is located in Gallatin and Park Counties beginning northeast of Bozeman and ending approximately one mile north of Wilsall, MT. Study Area
The corridor includes private ranches and homes; Gallatin National Forest; amenities such as trailheads and campgrounds, the Bridger Bowl alpine ski area, and Bohart Ranch, a cross-country ski center; and small streams. These features create a diverse travel demographic and vehicle type using the corridor. From Bozeman to Bridger Bowl (approximately 16 miles), the roadway is 25- to 30-feet wide with limited physical constraints. Beyond Bridger Bowl, the roadway narrows with roadway widths of 22 feet in some locations.
The goal of the study was to identify short-term and long-term improvements that meet the needs and objectives identified for the corridor. The study process documented existing and projected conditions; analyzed potential impacts and mitigation opportunities; gathered public, resource agency and stakeholder input; and provided recommendations for corridor improvements.