Glacier National Park

Rivaling one of the United States’ most spectacular national parks, including Yellowstone, Yosemite and the Grand Canyon, Glacier National Park is made up of jagged peaks formed by dramatic geological thrusts and carved by ancient ice. fulfilled. But its mountains and dense forests are just the tip of the well-known iceberg here. The glacier boasts deep indigenous connections, one of the most scenic park trails in the entire national park system, a historic “parktecture” lodge, and 740 miles of the intermittent escarpment. Trails with migration of grizzly bears and moose.

Glacier National Park Highlights

Glacier’s Glaciers


There are now 26 glaciers in the park (35 were identified and named in 1966), more than any other national park in the United States, including North Cascades (over 300) and Mount Rainier (with 25). Many people are surprised to learn that there are far fewer 1). Mountain). Today’s visitor may be the last to actually see a glacier in the park. Current figures suggest that the park could be glacier-free by 2030 if current warming trends continue.

Head to the Jackson Glacier Overlook for an easily accessible viewpoint. This popular pullover is just a short walk from the Gunsite Pass starting point and offers distant views of his fifth largest glacier in the park.

Going to the Sun Road


A strong contender for America’s Most Spectacular Road, the 50-mile Going to the Sun Road was created for the express purpose of allowing visitors to explore the interior of the park without having to hike. was built in A National Historic Landmark, this engineering wonder traverses Logan Pass (6,646 feet) and is surrounded by hiking trails, waterfalls, and endless vistas. The opening of the road marks the official start of the park’s busy summer season.

Logan Pass


Logan Pass is named after the glacier’s first keeper, William R. Logan. The pass sits above the treeline of the windswept Continental Divide and is blocked with snow most of the year. This is the highest point in the park where you can drive on the road. There are two of his trails, the Hidden Lake Overlook leading into Hidden Lake itself and the High Line from here. The scenery is amazing. However, the parking situation is not. During peak hours, you may spend a lot of time looking for a parking space.

Two Medicine Valleys


Prior to the construction of the Going to the Sun Road in the 1930s, Two Medicine Valley was just a 12-mile (12-mile) horse ride from the Great Northern Railway and the newly built Glacier Park Lodge, making it the park’s most He was one of the most accessible hubs. Renowned for its healthy bear population and steeped in Aboriginal beliefs, the area has never lost its haunting beauty, although it has seen fewer visitors in recent times.

The 8,020-foot Triple Divide Peak, located about 3 miles northwest, marks the hydrological peak of the North American continent. Emptying the bucket of water at the top, he flows into three oceans: Pacific, Atlantic and Arctic.

Hiking


Glacier National Park has nearly 1,000 miles of hiking trails, from short trips just off Going to the Sun Road to epic backpacking trips into bear country. Here are some of the highlights of the trail.

High Line Trail

One of the glacier’s classics, the Highline Trail follows the famous Garden Wall to Granite Park Chalet. Granite Park Chalet is he one of two historic lodges accessible only by trail. The summer slopes are covered with alpine plants and wild grasses, and the scenery is spectacular. With only 800 feet of elevation gain over 7.6 miles, you’ll hardly break a sweat.

Iceberg Lake Trail

Just one of his most popular glacier hikes, this 14.5 km round-trip tour takes you to the eponymous deep cirque, surrounded by 914 m high vertical walls. The icebergs floating on the quiet surface of the lake in the middle of summer are breathtakingly beautiful. The climb into the Many Glacier Valley is fairly gradual, passing wildflower meadows with spectacular views.

Sunpoint to Virginia Falls

The myriad trailheads along the eastern side of Going to the Sun Road are conveniently served by the free park shuttle, offering many short interconnected hikes, of which Some can be combined into a decent morning or afternoon walk.

Follow the busy St. Mary Falls Trail, winding up through the trees to the most picturesque waterfalls in the valley, surrounded by the colorful foliage of the St. Mary River. Beyond here, the trail branches off along Virginia Creek, past narrow canyons, and onto the mist-shrouded (and quieter) Virginia Falls. Round trip to Virginia Falls is approximately 7 miles. An easy hike takes about 4 hours.

Piegan Pass

A popular hike among glacier fans. The trail begins on the Going-to-the-Sun Road at a convenient shuttle stop at Siyeh Bend, east of Logan Pass, and takes you to Many Glacier, the mystical heart of the glacier. Also St. Mary and Whitefish. You’ll also pass through colorful Preston Park, one of the most beautiful and happy alpine meadows in the region. The 12.8-mile trail (6-hour journey) begins at the Siyeh Bend shuttle stop.

Dawson, Pitamacan Pass Loop

This epic his 18.8-mile hike along an exposed ridge that crosses the Continental Divide twice, for the ambitious and fit he can be completed in one day. Blessed with two spectacular mountain passes and home to a myriad of flora and fauna, including grizzly bears, the site is often touted by park rangers as one of his highlights of glacier hiking.

Accommodation options near Glacier National Park


Glacier’s classic ‘marketecture’ lodges — many of the Glacier Hotels, Lake Macdonald Lodges, and Glacier Park Lodges — are separate locations where travelers to this wilderness park arrive by train and set out on their adventures. A living, breathing, functioning artifact of the (later) era. Backcountry on horseback.

But there’s more to staying in Glacier National Park. There are also popular backcountry chalets, numerous campgrounds for RV travelers and tent campers, and motel-style accommodations in and around the park. These are some of the best:

Lodges


These early 20th-century works were built with Swiss chalet elements and archetypal Wild West elements. Today they appear to consciously and charmingly evoke a romantic, almost mythical vision of rustic coziness – an ideal reflection of the beautiful landscape on the doorstep.

Glacier Park Lodge

Set on charming, manicured, flower-filled grounds overlooking Montana’s oldest golf course, this historic 1914 lodge builds on classic national park traditions (imported from Washington State) was built. Striking Native American artwork adorns the common areas, and a large teepee is shoved awkwardly onto his upstairs balcony.

In keeping with national park tradition, the rooms here are ‘rustic’ with no TVs or air conditioning. The shaded verandah is dotted with rocking chairs both inside and out, and the views of the glacier peaks alone are worth the price of admission. The pool in the back has little shade. Two restaurants and one bar are open to non-guests.

Lake Macdonald Lodge

Facing shimmering Lake McDonald and built in the classic American “parkitecture” style, the lodge greets guests through a rather unremarkable back door, coming from a boat on the shore of the lake. Small, cozy and rustic rooms are complemented by cottages and his 1950s motel.

The current building, which he built in 1913 on the site of a former lodge commissioned by park pioneer George Snyder in the 1890s, has no air conditioning or televisions in the rooms. His one of over 20 remodeled rooms and deluxe rooms also offer several boutique styles, including tiled bathrooms, supremely comfortable king-size beds and artistic touches. There are two restaurants on the premises, and a ranger program is held nightly during the summer months. The lakeside location is ideal, close to the Going-to-the-Sun Road trailhead.

Many Glacier Hotels

This huge Swiss chalet-style lodge (some male staff wear lederhosen) has one of the most spectacular locations in the park, facing the northeastern shore of Lake Swiftcurrent. Constructed in 1915 by Great He Northern Railway, the comfortable, rustic rooms have been modernized over the last 15 years (restoration work is underway). Deluxe rooms have a boutique-style feel, including modern tiled bathrooms.

An elevated stone oven with a unique 1940s chimney system marks the center of the large foyer and lounge he area. Here guests gather to enjoy the shimmering snow and glacier peaks (everyone can try his piano in his circa 1877 lobby). Some of the park’s most famous hikes start nearby. The complex has several restaurants, and hikers can purchase groceries and other supplies at the cafe and shop on the first floor.

Historic Chalets

Granite Park Chalet

A popular resting point for hikers on the Swiftcurrent Pass and Highline Trail, this very basic chalet (pit toilet) dates back to the park’s early 20th-century heyday. A rustic kitchen with a propane oven is available, but you must bring your own food to cook. Snacks and freeze-dried foods are available for purchase. Our 12 guest rooms can accommodate 2 to 6 people.

Linens are an additional charge of $25 per person. Make sure to book in advance and bring as much water as possible (bottles and sodas are available for purchase) as it gets busy. Reservations must be made online.

Sperry Chalet

Built in 1914 by the Great Northern Railway, many of his 17-room chalets in this historic Swiss style were destroyed in a fire in 2017, but their historic character has been preserved even after being rebuilt. It was done. It’s a three-hour hike from the nearest road. Guests must walk or horseback a 6.5-mile (6.5-mile) uphill trail that begins at Lake McDonald Lodge.

With no light, heat or water, the hotel was part of an ancient accommodation network that once spanned the entire park before the Going to the Sun Road was built. Sperry offers incredible views. If you go to the restroom outside at midnight, be sure to bring a flashlight. The room is private. However, the walls are paper thin. The price includes three excellent meals (packed lunches are available), and mules can be hired to carry your gear.

Belton Chalet

Built and opened in the same year (1910) as the National Park, this Swiss chalet was Glacier’s first tourist hotel, overlooking the West Hens Glacier railroad tracks. Other incarnations followed, including a stint as a pizzeria, until a renovation in the late 1990s devastated the property until the removal of 25 traditionally elegant rooms, artisan-style furnishings, spa and celebrity taproom. Two cottages and one spectacular rustic Old West cottage are open year-round and perfect for families.

Camp


Glacier National Park has plenty of places to pitch your tent or park your RV. Here are the most popular ones:

Apgar Campground

This large forest campground, the largest in the park, is a good choice as it is close to the Apgar Village and West Glacier facilities and just a short walk from Lake McDonald. However, it feels far from the wilderness experience.

Avalanche Creek Campground

Adjacent to the park’s native cedar forest, this lush campground gets more rain than most. Some sites are covered by mature forests of hemlock, cedar and Douglas fir, but they are located near Lake McDonald and on several very popular trailhead trails. Don’t expect quietness or privacy during the day.

Many glacier campgrounds

With access to incredible hiking trails, this densely forested campground is he one of the park’s most popular campgrounds. The Swiftcurrent Motor Inn complex, which includes restaurants, hot showers, laundry, and a camp shop, is within walking distance. Primitive camp is until the end of October. Half of the pitches are reservable, including 94 and 92, the highest pitches along the river.

Bowman Lake Campground

This rarely full campground is located on his six miles (6 miles) on the Inside North Fork Road in Polebridge, with very spacious pitches on lush grounds and steps from beautiful Lake Bowman. I have. There is a visitor information tent with reference books and local hiking information. Pole Bridge roads can be particularly rough after heavy rain. A primitive camp is also held until the end of October.

Sprague Creek Campground

The smallest campground in the park, off Going to the Sun Road on the shores of Lake McDonald, is mostly tented. Passing traffic sleeps. Arrive early to secure a spot overlooking the lake. Hiker/biker sites $5.

Indigenous History of Glacier National Park


For thousands of years, the Blackfeet (Niitsitapi), Salish, and Kootenai tribes have called Glacier National Park home and worshiped at sacred sites such as Two Medicine and Chief Mountain. After initial contact with white settlers when the Lewis and Clark expedition passed through the area, the Blackfeet, Salish, and Kootenai tribes were identified as white settlers in the early 1990s U.S. Indian Relocation Strategy. suffered from the westward expansion of

Native Americans, increasingly dependent on government funding, had no choice but to agree to a unilateral treaty in 1855. The reserve originally included the entire area of ​​Glacier National Park east of the Continental Divide. However, the Blackfeet sold part of what is now Glacier National Park to the United States government, and in 1910 the land was changed to his eighth national park in the system.

About 10,000 blackfeet now live on his 3,812-square-mile reservation just east of the park. The reserve includes major park access points such as St. Mary’s and the East Glacier, and despite their expropriation, the land on and around the eastern side of the glacier remains ceremonially and culturally protected. have an important meaning.

Visiting Glacier National Park


Glacier Park International Airport in Kalispell has year-round service to Salt Lake, Minneapolis, Denver, Seattle and Las Vegas, and seasonal service to Atlanta, Oakland, LA, Chicago and Portland. Alaska, Allegiant, American Airlines, Delta and United have flights to FCA.

Amtrak`s Empire Builder stops daily at West Glacier and East Glacier Park, with a whistle stop in Browning. Xanterra provides a shuttle (adult $6 to $10, child $3 to $5, 10 to 20 minutes) from West Glacier to their lodges on the west end, and Glacier Park Collection by Pursuit offers shuttles (from $15, one hour) connecting East Glacier Park to St Mary and Whitefish.

Glacier National Park runs a free hop-on, hop-off shuttle bus from Apgar Transit Center to St Mary over Going-to-the-Sun Road from July 1 to Labor Day; it stops at all major trailheads. Xanterra Concession operates traditional guided red bus tours.

If you’re driving your own vehicle, be prepared for narrow, winding roads, heavy traffic, and limited parking at most stops along the Going-to-the-Sun Road.

When is Glacier National Park open?


The park is open year-round, but most services are closed from he October through his mid-May. However, visiting the park on snowshoes or cross-country skis in the dead of winter is an unforgettable experience. The path to the sun opens when they finish plowing.

The east side of the park reopened on March 18, 2021 after a lengthy closure by the Blackfeet Reservation to protect the tribe from the COVID-19 pandemic. Campgrounds, certain roads, lake access, and other park facilities are slowly reopening on a case-by-case basis.Please check the Glacier National Park website for updates as parks reopen.

Visitor Center


The LEED-certified Apgar Visitor Center, with ample parking and free Wi-Fi signal, is located 1.5 miles north of West Glacier at the western end of Going-to-the-Sun Road. From here, take the free park shuttle to all points along the Going-to-the-Sun Road to Logan Pass. Transfer here to head to the St. Mary Visitor Center.

The Logan Pass Visitor Center is set in the most luxurious setting of any park visitor center, offering park information, interactive exhibits, and an excellent gift shop. The Hidden Lake Overlook Trail and the High Line Trail start here.

Accessibility


Most attractions and campgrounds in the park are wheelchair accessible. For a complete and detailed list, download Glacier’s own Accessibility Brochure (available at each entrance station). A great source of information on everything from hotels and campgrounds to visitor sites and ranger-led activities.

Service animals are permitted on Glacier. All Glacier accommodations have wheelchair accessible rooms. All Glacier shuttles are equipped with wheelchair lifts and harnesses, and drivers can assist passengers with reduced mobility in boarding and disembarking. For advance arrangements, please call the park visitor center. Glacier National Park produces handouts in Braille, videos with audio descriptions, and large print brochures. Discounted park and national forest passes are available for people with disabilities.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *