Glacier National Park
Mother Nature's best work
Glacier National Park is the center of one of the largest and most intact ecosystems in North America. The views from the cliff-strewn Going-to-the-Sun Road over the Continental Divide make a visit worthwhile, but the experience from inside a car or one of the Park’s famous Red Jammer buses is just the tip of the icefield. Glacier’s one million acres of turquoise alpine lakes, mountain goats and grizzly bears, craggy peaks, and of course, glaciers are almost guaranteed to leave visitors speechless.
Going to the Sun Road
The 52 miles of this two-lane road that stretch over sheer cliffs and around solid rock would be an impressive engineering feat today, and were even more so when the road was built in the 1930s. The aptly titled Going-to-the-Sun Road crosses the Continental Divide at nearly 7,000 feet through Logan Pass, providing scenic views of Glacier National Park’s rugged landscape and iconic wildlife right from the road—each mile a photo opportunity and every switchback an adrenaline rush.
Getting Around the Park
The Going-to-the-Sun Road is the only road that ventures deep into Glacier, but areas near the Park boundary such as Many Glacier, East Glacier, the North Fork, and Two Medicine are also reachable by car. More than 700 miles of hiking trails crisscross the Park, and several lakes offer crossings by boat.
See for yourself—take a virtual tour of Glacier with our seven-part video series.
- Or download a PDF itinerary to get some ideas for your trip to Glacier National Park:
- Entering from Canada Via the East or via the West.
- Entering from Montana Via the East or via the West.
Together with surrounding wilderness areas and Canadian National Parks, Glacier represents an enormous swath of North America that has been largely undisturbed by human civilization, and its many hiking trails are the ideal way to experience this natural landscape. Whether a short day hike to one of 25 remaining active glaciers or a week-long adventure that connects the historic Sperry and Granite Park Chalets high in the backcountry, there is nothing like experiencing the landscape on foot.
In addition to tours of the Going-to-the-Sun Road on the Park’s historic red buses or with the Native American led Sun Tours, outfitters offer single- and multi-day horseback trips and several of the Park’s many glacial lakes can be toured on historic wooden boats. Bicycles are allowed on the Going-to-the-Sun Road mornings, evenings, and in the spring before it opens to cars.
Dining and Lodging
The historic lodges in Glacier National Park are almost as popular as its natural wonders. Two are within the Park’s boundaries: Many Glacier Hotel on Swiftcurrent Lake, and Lake McDonald Lodge. While guests are by no means roughing it, these lodges offer an experience that is in many ways similar to the one the Park’s first visitors had. The entrance towns of West Glacier and East Glacier offer other lodging and dining options, while nearby Whitefish boasts modern hotels and award-winning restaurants.