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Formerly Glacier Treks Outdoor Adventures

Things to Do in Glacier National Park

Updated: May 2

Glacier National Park is one of the top 10 most visited National Parks in the US. In 2022, there were 3 million people that came to see the amazing Rocky Mountains nestled in Glacier National Park.

Reflection in Red Eagle Lake in Glacier National Park
Reflection in Red Eagle Lake in Glacier National Park

With its towering peaks, pristine lakes, and diverse wildlife, Glacier National Park offers an array of activities for outdoor enthusiasts, photographers, and nature lovers alike. Whether you're a hiker, a bird watcher, cyclist, or simply seeking a tranquil escape, Glacier National Park has something for everyone to enjoy.


Here are some of the must-try activities and attractions that make Glacier a bucket-list destination. Read on for Things to Do in Glacier National Park.



Things to Do in Glacier National Park


Winter Months

 

Hiking Adventures


Glacier National Park boasts over 700 miles of trails, providing hikers of all skill levels with unparalleled opportunities to explore its stunning landscapes.



Here Are 3 Great Hiking Options for Hikers of Various Abilities:


1. Avalanche Lake Hike Easy/Moderate


Beautiful Avalanche Creek Glacier Run Off
Beautiful Avalanche Creek Glacier Run Off

Beginning at the Trail of the Cedars, the trail winds through Montana's pristine wilderness, leading hikers alongside clear streams and ancient cedars. In my humble opinion, one of the most beautiful parts of Glacier National Park can be seen early on this hike.


I love to watch the roaring water of Avalanche Creek wind through weathered rock formations and over fallen lodgepole pines. Get ready to have your senses amazed!


At the end, the pay off is stunning vistas of a mountain framed Avalanche Lake which is adorned with waterfalls in the spring and early summer.

Total distance = 6 miles. (3 miles in, 3 miles back)

Elevation gain = 757 ft

Time = 3-5 hrs


Avalanche Lake  Adorned with Waterfal
Avalanche Lake Adorned with Waterfalls



2. Highline Trail Moderate/Advanced


For a much more advanced challenge and incredible panoramic views, try the Highline Trail, which winds along the Continental Divide. You will have incredible views of Lake McDonald Valley, Mt Oberlin, and little gulleys that look like places for fairies to live. It’s also a great place to see mountain goats, wildflowers, grouse, and marmots.


And hope you don’t see a grizzly like these guys.

People Meet Grizzly Bear on Highline Trail
People Meet Grizzly Bear on Highline Trail

I suggest starting a Logan Pass and hiking down to the Loop. You can catch a shuttle back to your car at the Pass.

Total distance = 11.9 miles

Elevation Gain = 1950 ft

Time = 6-8 hrs



Expansive views from Highline Trail  in Montana
Expansive views from Highline Trail in Montana



3. Piegan Mountain Advanced


View from Piegan Mountain
View from Piegan Mountain

For a more strenuous adventure, tackle the Piegan (“pee-gun”) Mountain via Piegan Pass, leading you to a one of the most stunning 360 degree view of the Park including Piegan Glacier, Mount Siyeh, and Pollock Mountain! The name Piegan Mountain comes from the Piegan tribe of the Blackfeet Indian nation. To begin the ascent, take the Siyeh Band Trailhead and continue to the Piegan Pass Trail. The final ascent to the top of this peak requires some scrambling on a game trail and some additional off roading. Although the views are amazing and worth it, I suggest getting further details so you don’t get lost. Be prepared for the weather; in mid-August, the wind was so bad at the top, that I almost couldn’t stand up.


Total distance = 13.9 miles

Elevation Gain = 3,400 ft

Time = 7-9 hrs




 

Going-to-the-Sun-Road


Embark on a scenic drive along the famous Going-to-the-Sun Road, a marvel of engineering that traverses the park from west to east.


This 50-mile stretch offers jaw-dropping vistas, including glacial valleys, alpine meadows, and the chance to spot wildlife like mountain goats and bighorn sheep.

Weeping Wall in Glacier National Park
Weeping Wall in Glacier National Park

You’ll come across the Weeping Wall, that stretches 100 feet, this cliff is a cascading marvel in the early summer. Though not entirely natural, its origin traces back to the road's construction. Workers, in the process of carving through rock outcroppings, exposed spring-fed water veins. As snowmelt intensifies in early summer, these once-trickling veins transform into a roaring torrent, adding a dynamic touch to the landscape and making the Weeping Wall a must-see highlight on the journey through Glacier National Park.


Hidden Lake Hike at Sunset
Hidden Lake Hike at Sunset




Be sure to stop at Logan Pass for a hike to Hidden Lake and to take in the breathtaking views of Mount Brown the Garden Wall, and all their friends.








 

Winter Months

Don’t forget you can always visit Glacier in the winter months when crowds are down and serenity abides.



Going-to-the-Sun Road in the Winter Tours
Going-to-the-Sun Road in the Winter

Guided snowshoe and cross country tours are available through Tour Glacier. They offer curated, personalized experiences for full or half day exploration that include transportation, a park pass for hassle-free entry, and a delightful lunch to refuel.




 

Wild Life Watching


Glacier National Park is home to a diverse array of wildlife, including grizzly bears, moose, elk, and bald eagles.


Always remember to keep a safe distance and respect the park's guidelines for observing wildlife and remember to bring your bear spray and practice bear safety.




 

Boat Tours of Glacier's Lakes


Discover Glacier's pristine lakes by taking a boat tour.


Many of the park's lakes, such as Lake McDonald and St. Mary Lake, offer guided boat excursions, providing a unique perspective of the surrounding mountains and glaciers. Consider a sunset boat tour for an extra touch of magic as the sun dips behind the rugged peaks.





 

Camping Under the Stars


Immerse yourself in the tranquility of Glacier National Park by camping under the starlit sky.


With several campgrounds throughout the park, you can choose between developed sites and backcountry camping. Wake up to the crisp mountain air, surrounded by the sounds of nature, and enjoy a true wilderness experience.



 

Photography Opportunities


For photographers, Glacier National Park is a dream come true.


Capture the ethereal beauty of sunrise or sunset at iconic locations like Many Glacier or Two Medicine. The park's ever-changing weather patterns and diverse ecosystems offer endless possibilities for stunning shots, so be sure to bring your camera and capture memories that will last a lifetime.



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