Glacier Outdoors

Original open uri20160815 3469 vqir4p?1471304535?ixlib=rails 0.3
Glacier Outdoors
Glacier National Park is the perfect getaway for outdoor enthusiasts. Hike Montana's trails, kayak on the pristine lakes, and camp under the legendarily expansive sky.
Photo courtesy of David Restivo/Glacier NPS
  • 1 / 8
    Original open uri20160815 3469 vqir4p?1471304535?ixlib=rails 0.3
    Camping in Glacier
    There are 13 different campgrounds and roughly 1,000 campsites to choose from in Glacier National Park; even so, they fill up quickly. More popular spots are a great way to meet fellow adventurers; alternatively, find a more remote campsite for some one-on-one time or a restful night after a day of backcountry hiking. Some campgrounds have bathrooms and showers for those who want some modern comforts in their Glacier experience. No matter where you end up pitching your tent, be sure to sit back and take in the brilliant starry sky and the sounds of the lake lapping against the shore.
    Photo courtesy of David Restivo/Glacier NPS
  • 2 / 8
    Original open uri20160815 3469 b8pcve?1471304540?ixlib=rails 0.3
    Hiking Glacier's 700 Miles of Trails
    More than 700 miles of trails offer options for short, easy hikes as well as multi-day excursions. An easy day hike off Going-to-the-Sun Road on the Trail of the Cedars will take you to Avalanche Gorge. A more challenging day hike on the Grinnell Glacier trail offers you a view of the glacier and potential encounters with bear. There are also a number of options to hike into the backcountry for days at a time. Hikers should always stop at a park visitor center to check on area warnings and recommendations. When hiking, make sure to observe the Leave No Trace principles: Take only photos and leave only footsteps; stay on trails; and pack out all trash.
    Photo courtesy of Glacier NPS
  • 3 / 8
    Original open uri20160815 3469 12k7sxt?1471304544?ixlib=rails 0.3
    Canoe or Kayak on Pristine Lakes
    Visitors can bring their own kayaks and canoes or rent them from outfitters and enjoy hours of peaceful paddling on the waters of Glacier National Park. Lake McDonald has a public boat launch, and Swiftcurrent Lake allows access to many backcountry trailheads leading to views of Grinnell Glacier. Bowman and Kintla lakes are more remote; Bowman is accessible by a partly unpaved road, and no motorized watercraft are allowed on Kintla. Be sure to bring your hiking boots, since several trailheads can be found around the campground. Kayaking on the more remote lakes offers time to take in the quiet natural beauty surrounding you; in some shallower areas, the glacial water is so clear you can see the lake bottom.
    Photo courtesy of David Restivo/Glacier NPS
  • 4 / 8
    Original open uri20160815 3469 148o9og?1471304549?ixlib=rails 0.3
    Going-to-the-Sun Road
    If you're looking for a way to experience Glacier National Park's majesty without hiking or kayaking through it, drive along Going-to-the-Sun Road. When Glacier first opened in the early 20th century, there was no road across the park. In 1932, after a decade of increasing numbers of visitors and demand for a throughway, Going-to-the-Sun Road was completed. The road is a National Historic Landmark and an incredible engineering feat, stretching 50 miles across the park's eastern and western entrances through stunning wilderness. Take in the remarkable views of the mountains, valleys, and glaciers as you rise to the highest point of the road at Logan Pass, 6,646 feet above sea level.
    Photo courtesy of David Restivo/Glacier NPS
  • 5 / 8
    Original open uri20160815 3469 agkncr?1471304553?ixlib=rails 0.3
    Stay in One of Glacier's Lodges
    If camping isn't on the cards for your trip, make a reservation at one of the lodges in Glacier National Park. The 82 rooms of Lake McDonald Lodge, a historic lodge on the northeast lake shore, range in style and price. The Village Inn is located in historic Apgar Village, two miles from the west park entrance. The two-story inn has 36 rooms. Construction of Many Glacier Hotel was commissioned in 1913 by the Great Northern Railway; the five-level, 215-room hotel opened on the edge of Swiftcurrent Lake in 1915 and has Swiss-style architecture. The railway also built the Granite Park Chalet in 1915 to provide comfortable backcountry accommodations. It’s the last of the chalets built by the railway and only accessible by trail.
    Photo courtesy of David Restivo/Glacier NPS
  • 6 / 8
    Original open uri20160815 3469 1dbwvn2?1471304558?ixlib=rails 0.3
    Snowshoeing and Cross-Country Skiing
    During the winter months, snowshoeing and cross-country skiing are popular activities. Follow the marked trails or the unmarked routes that are already carved, or break your own trails and enjoy the satisfaction of carving through fresh powder and knowing that others will soon be following in your tracks. Just be sure to always have both geographic and topographic maps with you. Areas to ski and snowshoe around Lake McDonald and Apgar Village are fairly easy to find. Skiers, snowshoers, and hikers are asked to maintain separate tracks and to register at the trailhead before heading out into Glacier. Avoid frozen lakes at all times.
    Photo courtesy of Glacier NPS
  • 7 / 8
    Original open uri20160815 3469 owqnk9?1471304562?ixlib=rails 0.3
    Explore Whitefish
    Less than an hour's drive from Glacier National Park, downtown Whitefish includes a few walkable blocks. Montana Coffee Traders, Red Caboose Frozen Yogurt and Coffee, and Sweat Peaks Ice Cream are all great downtown stops, especially on a hot summer day. If you’re visiting for the winter holidays, snuggle up with a 45-minute sleigh ride at Whitefish's Bar W Guest Ranch, and be sure to catch a hockey game or lace up your skates at the Stumptown Ice Den. In nearby Kalispell, be sure to check out the new Kalispell Brewing Company, which serves traditional German lagers and Northwest-style ales. Art lovers should visit the Hockaday Museum of Art for a permanent collection of Glacier National Park art and culture.
    Photo by Ulf Nammert/age fotostock
  • 8 / 8
    Original open uri20160815 3469 srfr5n?1471304566?ixlib=rails 0.3
    Cycling along Going-to-the-Sun Road
    Biking the length of Going-to-the-Sun Road is a challenging yet exhilarating way to see Glacier National Park; increasing numbers of cyclists are taking it on each year. The road is narrow and strenuous, full of blind curves and steep grades, and is not for the faint of heart—but is worth it for the views. Cyclists should start early and follow traffic regulations, keeping to the right and riding in single file. It takes about 45 minutes to ride from Sprague Creek to Logan Creek, and another three hours from Logan Creek to Logan Pass. To ease summer traffic congestion, bicycles are prohibited between Apgar Campground and Sprague Creek from 11:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m., and eastbound from Logan Creek to Logan Pass during the same hours.
    Photo courtesy of Glacier NPS