Missoula International Airport

Missoula International Airport (IATA: MSO, ICAO: KMSO, FAA LID: MSO) is located in Missoula, in Missoula County, Montana. It is owned by the Missoula County Airport Authority.[2]

Missoula International Airport

Johnson-Bell Field
Missoula Airport.gif
Airport typePublic
OwnerMissoula County Airport Authority
ServesMissoula, Montana
Elevation AMSL3,206 ft / 977 m
Coordinates46°54′59″N 114°05′26″W / 46.91639°N 114.09056°W / 46.91639; -114.09056Coordinates: 46°54′59″N 114°05′26″W / 46.91639°N 114.09056°W / 46.91639; -114.09056
MSO is located in Montana
Location of airport in Montana / United States
MSO is located in the United States
MSO (the United States)
Direction Length Surface
ft m
12/30 9,501 2,896 Asphalt
8/26 4,612 1,406 Asphalt
Statistics (2019)
Aircraft operations35,944
Based aircraft161
Passengers (2019)907,777
Sources: Montana DOT [1]
Missoula airport terminal building
A United Express CRJ200 arriving from San Francisco
Missoula airport terminal building

The National Plan of Integrated Airport Systems for 2011–2015 categorized it as a primary commercial service airport (more than 10,000 enplanements per year).[3] Federal Aviation Administration records say the airport had 288,071 passenger boardings (enplanements) in calendar year 2008,[4] 281,428 in 2009 and 289,875 in 2010.[5]

Several expansion projects are planned or underway. The recently constructed 101-foot control tower was completed in September 2012. An expansion of the terminal building, with a new security screening area, was completed in 2007. Despite its name, not a single international flight operates from the airport.


Missoula's first landing strip was laid out in 1923 south of the university. An additional strip near the Western Montana Fair Grounds on what is now Sentinel High School was sold to the county in 1927 at the request of the Missoula chapter of the National Aeronautic Association and would become Missoula's first true airport. The current airfield is named after that chapter's first president, Harry O. Bell along with mountain flying pioneer Bob Johnson of Johnson Flying Service (now Minuteman Aviation). The original Garden City Airport was renamed Hale Field in 1935 and would operate as such until closing forever in 1954. The airport was gradually replaced by the Missoula County Airport opened in 1941 with WPA funds and the cooperation of the US Forest Service who needed access to an airport. The new airport was renamed Johnson-Bell Field in 1968 and today serves over 750,000 passengers a year.[6]


The airport covers 2,700 acres (1,093 ha) at an elevation of 3,206 feet (977 m). It has two asphalt runways: 12/30 is 9,501 by 150 feet (2,896 x 46 m) and 8/26 is 4,612 by 75 feet (1,406 x 23 m).[2]

In the year ending January 1, 2018 the airport had 35,944 aircraft operations, average 98 per day: 63% general aviation, 16% air taxi, 20% airline, and 2% military. 161 aircraft were then based at the airport: 56% single-engine, 20% multi-engine, 18% jet, and 14% helicopter.[2]

The airport recently constructed a new 101-foot tall control tower, replacing one that opened in 1961.[7] The new control tower is one of the tallest control towers in the Pacific Northwest, and is the tallest in Montana. The price tag is an estimated $6.77 million.[7]

Airlines and destinationsEdit

Alaska Airlines Los Angeles (begins March 19, 2020), Portland (OR), Seattle/Tacoma
Allegiant Air Las Vegas, Phoenix/Mesa
Seasonal: Los Angeles, Oakland
American Eagle Dallas/Fort Worth[8]
Seasonal: Chicago–O'Hare[8]
Delta Air Lines Minneapolis/St. Paul, Salt Lake City
Seasonal: Atlanta
Delta Connection Minneapolis/St. Paul, Salt Lake City
Seasonal: Los Angeles
Frontier Airlines Seasonal: Denver
United Airlines Denver
United Express Denver
Seasonal: Chicago–O'Hare, Los Angeles,[9] San Francisco

Neptune Aviation, an aerial firefighting company, is based from the airport.


Top destinationsEdit

Top ten busiest domestic routes out of MSO
(December 2017 - November 2018)
Rank City Passengers Carriers
1 Denver, Colorado 92,260 Frontier, United
2 Seattle, Washington 85,050 Alaska
3 Salt Lake City, Utah 78,750 Delta
4 Minneapolis/St Paul, Minnesota 63,330 Delta
5 Portland, Oregon 20,620 Alaska
6 Phoenix/Mesa, Arizona 18,460 Allegiant
7 Las Vegas, Nevada 15,070 Allegiant
8 Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas 10,600 American Eagle
9 Chicago–O'Hare, Illinois 9,630 United Express, American Eagle
10 Los Angeles, California 8,480 Allegiant, United Express

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ https://www.mdt.mt.gov/other/webdata/external/aero/boardings/boardings-2019.pdf
  2. ^ a b c FAA Airport Master Record for MSO (Form 5010 PDF). Federal Aviation Administration. Effective June 7, 2014.
  3. ^ "2011–2015 NPIAS Report, Appendix A" (PDF). National Plan of Integrated Airport Systems. Federal Aviation Administration. October 4, 2010. Archived from the original (PDF, 2.03 MB) on September 27, 2012.
  4. ^ "Enplanements for CY 2008" (PDF, 1.0 MB). CY 2008 Passenger Boarding and All-Cargo Data. Federal Aviation Administration. December 18, 2009.
  5. ^ "Enplanements for CY 2010" (PDF, 189 KB). 2010 Passenger Boarding and All-Cargo Data. Federal Aviation Administration. October 4, 2011.
  6. ^ "Airport Studies and Research". Montana.gov. Retrieved September 28, 2016.
  7. ^ a b Briggeman, Kim (July 27, 2010). "Tower to rise: Missoula airport to get modern control center". The Missoulian.
  8. ^ a b "American Airlines plans additional domestic routes in S18". RoutesOnline. December 17, 2017. Retrieved December 17, 2017.
  9. ^ "United continues domestic routes expansion in 2018". RoutesOnline. November 20, 2017. Retrieved November 20, 2017.
  10. ^ RITA | BTS | Transtats

External linksEdit