Located in Montana, Glacier National Park affords many nice mountain climbing experiences. The park is stuffed with wonderful pure wonders of contemporary blue lakes, imposing mountains and awe-inspiring glaciers.
With greater than 700 miles of each brief hikes and prolonged backpacking trails, it’s straightforward to seek out one you’ll love. Here are my picks for the 16 greatest Glacier National Park hikes. This put up was initially written by Julie from Outdoorzer who shared her shared her must-see trails once you go to Glacier National Park and The Planet D staff has added extra selection that will help you plan your journey.
Hiking Glacier National Park
Before you begin your hike, plan for a secure mountain climbing expertise. Stop on the park’s guests heart to get all the data you want, suggestions from the guides, and any particular warnings. Visit the National Park web site for closures and extra info.
When mountain climbing Glacier National Park: Be conscious of bears and cougars (mountain lions) and use correct security precautions. Hiking in teams or pairs lowers the chance, make noise, and don’t go away any meals out to draw animals.
Plus, don’t overlook to let somebody know the place you’re going. Be certain to have sufficient water, meals, and provides ought to something occur. We at all times carry a fundamental first support package when mountain climbing. But most significantly, deliver a way of journey and have enjoyable once you attempt considered one of these wonderful hikes.
1. Ptarmigan Tunnel
The Ptarmigan Tunnel is a full day Glacier National Park hike. This is an unimaginable path, as a result of once you come out on the different aspect of the tunnel, you are feeling such as you’ve walked into one other world.
When passing by way of this 240-foot tunnel, you hike by way of huge meadows full of wildlife in addition to a dense forest. Keep in thoughts that this tunnel was constructed for horses through the Thirties and it’s full of assorted slopes and edge ridges.
After you go Ptarmigan Falls, the path will get rather a lot steeper, so be ready for some powerful mountain climbing throughout this part. It then continues for about 1.6 miles to Ptarmigan Lake, the place you’ll be able to chill out and admire among the most lovely surroundings within the space. Be ready for an extended day.
Location: Ptarmigan Tunnel Total Distance: 10.7 miles spherical journey Elevation Gain: 2300 toes
2. Swiftcurrent Pass
This is a troublesome Glacier National Park hike but it surely’s value it for the nice surroundings. This hike passes by three lakes and a spectacular waterfall. Throughout your hike, it’s possible you’ll spy on among the rarest and most colourful birds all through the six lakes.
You may also see the attractive Granite Park. In reality, throughout this hike, you may get among the most unimaginable pictures of the blue lake and the encircling mountains. If you want, cease at Fishercap Lake, the place you would possibly see moose within the mornings or early within the night.
Length: Location: Many Glacier Round Trip 14.2 miles Elevation Gain: 2400 Feet
3. Iceberg Lake
This is without doubt one of the hottest mountain climbing experiences in Montana’s Glacier National Park. It additionally provides you the alternative to see icebergs floating in an alpine lake. When you hike right here you go by way of many open areas alongside the way in which that offer you excellent vistas of the peaceable mountains round you.
This hike takes about 4-hours to finish and begins on the identical path because the Ptarmigan path. It then veers off to the left on the junction. Be conscious of grizzly bears on this hike.
Location: Iceberg Ptarmigan Trailhead Length:Round Trip: 9.7 miles Average Gain: 1275 Feet
4. Cracker Lake
Cracker Lake is taken into account to be some of the lovely lakes on this planet. The wonderful shade of the lake is a crystal clear aqua blue and makes all of the surroundings round you much more great.
Location: Trailhead begins at Many Glacier Hotel Length: Round Trip: 12.6 miles Elevation Gain: 1400 Feet
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5. Pitamakan Pass Trail
This peaceable path goes over the ridge of Rising Wolf Mountain, passes a waterfall from Sky Lake, and finally ends up at Oldman Lake. From there the path switchbacks as much as Pitamakan Pass. Keep in thoughts although that because of the snow, this gained’t probably be satisfactory till late July and even August.
Here you’ll be able to climb up the excessive hills, then drop again down, almost 3,000 toes. You additionally need to hike a really slender path so be ready. Expect an extended and full day
Location: North Shore Trailhead Length: Round Trip: 15.4 miles Elevation Gain: 2500 toes
6. Grinnell Glacier Trail
This hike takes you to some of the iconic glaciers within the park. You go varied lakes, wonderful meadows, and beautiful cliffs alongside the way in which. The first half of the hike is simpler than the second half. It then turns into tougher because it rises steeply with a number of slopes.
But it’s value it as you’ll be able to see some wonderful vistas over Grinnell Falls, Angel Wing, and Grinnell Lake. The mountain climbing path is properly maintained and it’s possible you’ll encounter wildlife sightings alongside the way in which. No pets allowed
Location: Grinnell Glacier Trailhead Length: Out and Back: 7.6-miles Elevation Gain: 1840 Feet
7. Siyeh Pass
This path hike begins in a forest and takes you to varied peaks. Hike the rocky slopes after which go down by way of extra meadows to the Sunrift Gorge. Follow the path by way of the timber for about 2.5 miles after which head as much as Preston Park.
Be certain to take a little bit of time to admire the attractive surroundings throughout you earlier than you descend over 3,000 toes for the subsequent 5.4 miles the place you’ll find yourself on the Sunrift Gorge.
Length: Round Trip: 8.9 miles Elevation Gain: 2090 Feet
8. Two Medicine Area
Located on the north a part of the town of East Glacier, this unimaginable space affords extra jaw dropping surroundings and a few nice mountain climbing. The trails are extra peaceable than those at the place to begin (situated close to the Many Glacier resort). It’s an excellent are to hike in Glacier National Park in case you are a newbie.
You may take a wood boat tour on this space and you will discover some improbable tenting. At roughly 1.5 miles you emerge from the forest to be greeted by lush meadows and different vegetation. During your hike, you’ll go by way of a big open meadow and open terrain with colourful wild flowers. If you would like, you’ll be able to spend the evening tenting right here.
Location: Two Medicine Entrance Two Medicine day hikes embrace, Appistoki Falls, Aster Falls, Aster Park Overlook
9. Dawson Pass
Hiking the 15-mile Dawson Pass takes you as much as wonderful views of Oldman Lake. This path crosses the Dawson and Pitamakan passes taking you by way of peaceable scenes and waterfalls alongside the way in which. If you need to shave a while off your hike you’ll be able to take the shuttle boat throughout Two Medicine Lake.
Location: North Shore Trailhead Length: 6.5 miles Elevation Gain: 2450 toes
10. Hidden Lake Trail
While the Hidden Lake Trail is a reasonably brief path, the altitude makes it fairly difficult. The path is totally open, count on a number of solar and wind as you stroll by way of alpine meadows. Depending on the season, you would possibly even need to work throughout snowfields.
Keep a watch out for marmots, and big-horn sheep. Mountain goats are frequent on this path and recognizing one makes it fairly the journey. Grizzly bears have been seen within the space as properly. At the overlook, you’re rewarded with panoramic views of the close by mountains, lake, and wildflowers, nonetheless, it may be very busy on the overlook. A really breathtaking expertise that makes your Hidden Lake hike properly value it. If you’ll be able to, carry bear spray and a mountain climbing pole.
Location: Logan Pass Visitor Center Elevation achieve: 1325 toes (403 toes) Total spherical journey miles: 5.4 miles (8.9 km)
11. Avalanche Lake
This hike begins on the Trail of Cedars trailhead. While it’s an uphill climb you’ll be rewarded with some of the breathtaking views. The terrain on this path will not be difficult making avalanche lake some of the fashionable hikes for all ages.
There are a number of timber alongside the path that preserve it cool with some greater than 500 years previous. You’ll go a bridge that crosses Avalanche Gorge and be handled to views of Bearfoot Mountain jutting out from behind Avalanche Lake.
Take a while to arrange a picnic and take within the picturesque of the lake and the waterfalls as you benefit from the different panorama of the avalanche creek and forest. While the water on the lake is usually ice-cold and never ideally suited for swimming, you dip your toes in to chill out and funky down.
Location: Glacier Road north of Lake McDonald Elevation achieve: 757 toes Avalanche Lake Distance: 5.9 miles
12. Trail of the Cedars
Trail of the Cedars has no hills or steps to climb and is considered one of two wheelchair-accessible trails at Glacier National Park. It’s a straightforward path with lovely views of cascading waterfalls and snow-covered peaks. Walk amongst shadows of big cedar, black cottonwood, hemlock, and yew timber. The paths are broad and may accommodate many individuals without delay. Getting a parking spot will be difficult as this mountain climbing path may be very fashionable amongst guests.
Location: Lake McDonald Elevation achieve: 60 toes Total spherical journey miles: 1.0
13. Highline Trail
Highline Trail might be one of many spectacular hikes at Glacier National Park. However, it isn’t for the faint of coronary heart. If you’re scared o heights it’s possible you’ll need to go on this path as on the primary quarter mile you come throughout a steep ledge. There is a hand cable to help you on this stretch, nonetheless, it may be fairly nerve-wracking particularly when it will get windy.
Don’t let this discourage you as this path rewards you with spectacular views of Glacier National Park, the forested valley, waterfall cascades, alpine meadows, and wildflowers. You would possibly even spot some wild animals.
You don’t must do your complete a technique journey, many individuals flip round midway at Haystack Butte or Granite Park Chalet.
Location: Logan Pass Visitor Center Elevation achieve: 1950 toes Total One-Way Trip Miles: 11.8
14. Grinnell Glacier Overlook
If you’re in search of a problem, attempt the Grinnell Glacier Overlook, which might be some of the strenuous mountain climbing trails at Glacier National Park. Starting the hike on the Logan Pass Visitor Center the place the Highline Trail begins. Located southeast of the Granite Park Chalet it takes you to the Continental Divide.
Set out early earlier than the solar will get too sizzling as the primary three miles are open with no shade. Sunscreen and hats are essential on this stretch. Bring a number of water and a pair of fine mountain climbing footwear because the path can take some time- about 7 hours or extra relying in your velocity. A trekking pole will make your hike simpler.
The path is fashionable with seasoned hikers and will be fairly busy, there are additionally elements with slender edges and steep drop-offs that be fairly nerve-wracking. You would possibly spot some mountain goats and even grizzly bears down within the alpine meadows within the Chalet space.
Location: Highline Trail Elevation achieve: 2830 toes Total journey miles: 15.5
15. Upper McDonald Creek Trail
The Upper McDonald creek path is among the many simpler hikes at Glacier National Park. It’s a straightforward route within the woods that may be accomplished in beneath 2 hours. Perfect for those who’re in search of a peaceable meditative hike.
The terrain is usually flat and really clean making it fashionable amongst fowl watchers and for horseback using. The hike begins with scenic views of waterfalls, creeks, and the forest. There is a number of shade accessible which retains the path very cool. If you’re fortunate, you would possibly spot a moose or deer on the path.
Location: Lake McDonald Elevation achieve: 210 toes Total out and again miles: 5.3 Miles
16. Swiftcurrent Lake Nature Trail
The hike begins on the many glacier resort boat dock or on the Grinnell Glacier trailhead simply close to the picnic space. The hike is pretty straightforward and will be accomplished in an hour as a big portion of the route is paved. It’s an amazing route for the entire household to take pleasure in a pleasant and enjoyable hike with lovely views throughout for photographs. Take a second to take pleasure in lovely views of the lake and the encircling mountain peaks. Carry with you bear spray as there’s a whole lot of bear exercise within the space.
Location: Many Glacier Elevation achieve: 25 toes Total spherical journey miles: 2.7
Likes in Glacier National Park Map
Tips for Hiking Glacier National Park
When mountain climbing within the backcountry, it’s best to hike in teams. There is a whole lot of wildlife in Glacier National Park together with Grizzly bears. When mountain climbing with a gaggle, make noise, preserve speaking and let the wildlife know you’re there so that you simply don’t startle them.
Get a Steripen or LifeStraw to fill your water bottle with purified water. Make certain you’ve gotten a bottle holder in your backpack and preserve it full. I like to hold two bottles of water that I can refill through the use of my Steripen.
Pack layers. You can be going by way of elevation features and the climate can change from sizzling to chill, so put on light-weight breathable clothes that may be simply layered with a rain jacket and a mid-layer of merino wool.
Make certain your mountain climbing boots are properly damaged in and use them earlier than you go mountain climbing into Glacier National Park.
Always let somebody know the place you’re going earlier than mountain climbing and test with the web site and ranger station to see what the circumstances are.
And there you’ve gotten it, my favourite 16 Glacier National Park hikes. Remember, you don’t have to complete any of those hikes as there’s at all times a possibility to show round.
Give your self sufficient time when mountain climbing to make it again earlier than the solar goes down and don’t hike past your limits. Glacier National Park has hikes for everybody, so be sensible and hike inside your capabilities. Start small and have enjoyable!
Did you realize Glacier National Park within the United States is related to Canada’s Waterton Lakes National Park? The two parks are referred to as the International Peace Park, they’re a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and a Biosphere Reserved rolled multi functional. It’s the one considered one of its sort on this planet.
This put up was initially written by Julie Mclain of Outdoorszer. It has been up to date by The Planet D Team.
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