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The economy is primarily based on agriculture, including ranching and cereal grain farming.
Other significant economic activities include oil, gas, coal and hard rock mining, lumber, and the fastest-growing sector, tourism.
In total, 77 named ranges are part of the Rocky Mountains.
The eastern half of Montana is characterized by western prairie terrain and badlands.
Montana is one of the nine Mountain States, located in the north of the region known as the Western United States.
It borders North Dakota and South Dakota to the east.
Approximately 31,300,000 acres (127,000 km) of wilderness in 12 separate wilderness areas that are part of the National Wilderness Preservation System established by the Wilderness Act of 1964. Montana is a large state with considerable variation in geography, and the climate is, therefore, equally varied.
Montana's water resources provide for recreation, hydropower, crop and forage irrigation, mining, and water for human consumption.
Montana is one of few geographic areas in the world whose rivers form parts of three major watersheds (i.e. Its rivers feed the Pacific Ocean, the Gulf of Mexico, and Hudson Bay.
See also: List of monocotyledons of Montana, List of coniferous plants of Montana, List of lichens of Montana, List of amphibians and reptiles of Montana, List of birds of Montana, Fish of Montana, Mammals of Montana, and List of taxa described from Montana Vegetation of the state includes lodgepole pine, ponderosa pine; Douglas fir, larch, spruce; aspen, birch, red cedar, hemlock, ash, alder; rocky mountain maple and cottonwood trees.
Forests cover approximately 25 percent of the state.