Butte, MT, Montana

Smoking tolerance level [1= very illegal 5=virtually legal]: 4

Legislation: In November 2004, Montana voters by a significant margin (62 percent) passed Initiative 148, allowing certain patients with specific medical conditions to alleviate their symptoms through the limited use of marijuana under medical supervision.

The new law, effective immediately upon passage, also allows qualified patients and their caregivers to grow and/or possess a restricted number of marijuana plants. Montana is the 10th state to pass a medical marijuana law. Under federal law, it is still illegal to grow, sell, purchase, or use marijuana, even for health-related reasons.

Law enforcement: Police won’t actively target pot users, but they will respond to complaints, and you will be ticketed and charged if caught with marijuana or a pipe. Fines for possession are typically $550. Don’t do it in public and don’t be stupid. Butte is known for its parties, but law enforcement will be in full force during festivals such as St. Patrick’s Day or Evel Knievel Days (August), so be discreet.

Where to buy marijuana: Your best bet is to make conversation with someone at the Silver Dollar Saloon, or during festivals approach a stoner-looking person. Be friendly and honest and someone will probably be able to smoke you up, if not find you a small amount. Uptown Butte is a funky historic district with stunning architecture and old mine yards; a great place for a stoner to explore. The uptown area has several coffee shops, a few art galleries, and many decent bars, along with a few sketchy ones. Locals are very accepting of weed, but they mostly like to drink. The Silver Dollar Saloon is more of a hippie bar and very pot friendly.

A good place to smoke is on the “M” of Big Butte overlooking the city, at Granite Mountain Memorial near Walkerville, or in any of the funky back alleys of Uptown.

Marijuana prices: 1/8 = $50

1/4 = $80-100

Marijuana brands: Usually your standard B.C. fare, although occasionally Humboldt nugs will come through town. Shwag is uncommon, but available if you find the right people.

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