What To Do In Glacier National Park

Heading to Glacier National Park? Make sure you drive the iconic route; it's a must-do for new visitors. If you plan to visit, remember that passes are valid for seven days.

You might opt for an Annual Pass too—it opens gates at over 2,000 spots nationwide. Costs vary from free (for military members) up to $80—for some, it lasts a lifetime! In summer months before 4 pm, though, grab an entry ticket online.

They're free but carry a small booking fee—this quick step is part of your adventure prep! 


Exploring Going-to-the-Sun Road

Drive the iconic Going-to-the-Sun Road through Glacier National Park. No trip's complete without it! But remember, grabbing a ticket might be tricky; check for updates on reservations online.

If you're staying in the park—like camping or at lodges—you won't need extra vehicle passes. Here’s a tip: arrive before 6 am or after 4 pm during summer and skip getting that pass altogether. Sunrise at Logan Pass is epic—a must-see—and early arrival means no parking woes and more time to hike famed trails!

For hassle-free planning, follow these steps closely and savor every mile of this stunning journey. 

Hiking Trails for Every Skill Level

Glacier National Park offers trails for every hiker. Try easy walks like the boardwalks to waterfalls. For a thrill, tackle Piegan Pass at 7,600 feet up high.

You'll find paths fit for both seasoned pros and individuals just starting out. Plan your hike between summer and fall; that's when park roads are open, and shuttles run free from July through Labor Day—or earlier if Going-to-the-Sun Road is ready. Remember to book what you need early on!

Trails here may be busy in peak times—so an early start will serve you well. Whether craving vistas or leisurely strolls by falls, there’s a path here calling your name.


Spotlight on Hidden Lake Overlook

When you go to Hidden Lake Overlook, get there as the day breaks. Start your hike in dark's last moments so you'll see the sun light up those peaks just right. It's a sight that will stick with you; pink and orange hues kissing mountain tops, morning mist weaving through valleys below—a blue lake waking up amid it all.

You can't frame or spell it out quite enough. Words don’t do justice here at Glacier National Park’s overlook marvel. Other spots may boast their beauty too—Avalanche Lake Trail is one—but this sunrise moment by Hidden Lake?

Pure magic awaits early risers. Now let me drop a fun fact: Did you know that our Glacier joins hands with Canada’s Waterton for peace across borders? So if adventures call your name, make sure 'Hidden' makes your list—that spot where dawn dances daily—isn't to be missed! 

Enjoying the Views from Logan Pass

When you're at Logan Pass, the heart of Glacier National Park, every view is a feast for your eyes. Here's what you do: start with parking at the visitor center; it's simple enough if done early in the day to beat crowds. Next, take that popular three-mile trail leading to Hidden Lake Overlook – a must-do hike where mountain goats and local birds often make appearances.

This path isn't just easy on legs but also rich with wildflowers and stunning sights — picture-perfect moments await! Sure thing, this spot hits different as you stand atop Continental Divide feeling like king or queen of all peaks around. 

Wildlife Watching in Many Glacier

When you walk in Many Glacier, keep your eyes up; it's where the wild things are. Look for bears, both grizzly and black types, as this park section is their favorite hang-out spot. For a safe bear watch with experts, join an evening event at Swiftcurrent Motor Inn's lot—spot them on Altyn Peak slopes!

Berry season hikes like Iceberg and Ptarmigan Lake trails might gift you a bear encounter too. Bighorn sheep climb to cool heights come summer. Spot these nimble creatures on high trails or near Logan Pass—they love spotting hikers too!

And don't forget the mountain goats that scale cliffs beside Iceberg Lake paths—a binoculars' treat! Want tips on distant wildlife viewing? Glassing—the art of using scopes—is key around Josephine Lake shores early morning for feeding time glimpses of those majestic animals.

Remember: Binoculars at ready means not missing out when in Many Glacier—it’s prime territory for eye-catching wildlife moments from dawn till dusk.


Day Trips to Grinnell Glacier

Hit the trail early to snag a spot at Grinnell Glacier's base. The hike, though marked strenuous, sees various fitness levels conquering its path. You might even catch Bighorn sheep en route!

Atop, savor views of differing hues across upper and lower Grinnell Lakes—a sight for sore eyes. Prepare; it gets chilly despite summer treks due to elevation and breezes off ice fields. Pack a jacket for leisurely breaks enjoying vistas post-climb—or lunching with panoramic splendors in tow!

If four miles daunt you, consider riding Many Glacier Hotel's shuttle boat; there's a fee but it shaves 3.4 miles from your journey—it’s popular so plan accordingly for quieter trails or parking ease. Always carry bear spray—for safety among nature’s giants.


Water Activities at Lake McDonald

At Lake McDonald, you can rent boats and kayaks to explore the clear waters. Find gear at Apgar; it's right by Village Inn and shops. It’s less crowded there than Lake McDonald Lodge, where people flock later on.

Trust me, get up early for a peaceful morning paddle – well worth the wake-up call! You’ll have better views too. For renting in Glacier Park without prior booking, arrive before opening time or reserve spot once there—only a few available daily though!

Follow their social media for updates on reservations tied with Going to the Sun Road passes if that interests you as part of your visit plans.


Photography Hotspots in the Park

Grab your camera and head to the park's picnic spots. You'll find long, stunning views of mountains meeting sky—a photographer’s dream! Make sure you catch that afternoon glow at Avalanche Lake; it makes for perfect lighting.

For a unique twist in your albums, get those iconic Red Buses into frame – they add charm against nature's backdrop. The buses are often stationed at Lake McDonald or East Glacier Park lodges—if tours halt, use this chance! Position yourself along GTTSR and snap away as they pass by—or linger on their intricate details up close if still.

With sunshine either behind or beside you, even simple shots turn out great all day. Stroll around Lunch Creek where Big Horn Sheep might wander into view—this spot is candid-camera ready with its flowy creekside vibe. Siyeh Bend offers another scenic trail worth exploring with wildflowers galore under clear skies above St Mary Lake—from here shoot east afternoons or west mornings without sun squints.

Non-hikers note: near Wild Goose Island overlook there're steps equivalent to four flights—for some photographers, climbing may be tough but don't miss MG Valley vistas featuring Lodge-lake-mountain trios captured from the waterfall-bridge leading towards them. 

The Majesty of Avalanche Lake

At Glacier National Park, find your way to Avalanche Lake. You're in for a sight – clear water reflecting Bearhat Mountain's peaks with Little Matterhorn nearby. Keep an eye out for mountain goats up on the cliffs; they love it here too!

It’s friendly enough even if you have a stroller, but prepare for some lifting in spots. Despite cold waters, brave souls may dip into the lake as a refreshing treat. Remember: parking can be tight near Going-to-the-Sun Road by Avalanche campsite - come early!

More beauty awaits at the lake end – don't miss out on those waterfall views from Sperry Glacier. 

Visiting The Bitterroot Mile Club

As you gear up for an adventure in Glacier National Park, don't miss the Bitterroot Mile Club. Start at Lolo Pass with a day of cross-country skiing or snowshoeing on well-marked trails; they stretch over six miles and offer stunning mountain views. Grab your Winter Recreation Pass from the visitor center—just five bucks a day—to hit these picturesque paths.

After working up an appetite, treat yourself to wood-grilled steak perfection at Lolo Creek Steakhouse. Wrap up the evening under Montana's star-filled sky back at Grand View Cabin where morning coffee comes with epic peaks as your backdrop. Explore downtown Stevensville before hitting Lake Como’s trails for more scenic vistas that will take your breath away—it offers superb fat biking too!

And if it gets warm there, switch to snowshoes like we did! Before leaving this winter wonderland behind, visit a local farm harnessing geothermal heat to grow exotic fruits year-round—a true marvel not just for taste buds but also showcasing innovative farming techniques right here in Montana.


Scenic Boat Tours for Families

Take your family out on the water with scenic boat tours. Glide over crystal waters; look up at towering cliffs above. These tours suit all ages, letting kids and adults alike feel nature's calm and beauty without a tough climb or walk.

You might spot wildlife from your safe seat in the vessel as you learn about this park’s rich stories from knowledgeable guides who know every hidden gem. Boat rentals are available too if you prefer to steer your own adventure! Just remember to dress warmly – it can get cold out there among Glacier National Park's snowy scenes, even under bright sunshine.

Pack some food for an impromptu picnic aboard; make memories that will last far beyond these peaceful waves.

Ready for adventure at Glacier National Park? You'll find trails ripe for hiking, waters perfect for kayaking, and landscapes begging to be photographed. Witness wildlife in its natural habitat or camp under starlit skies.

Drive the scenic Going-to-the-Sun Road; don't miss this breathtaking journey! Every turn offers a memory so pack those bags with curiosity and a spirit ready to embrace nature's wonders. Discover yourself amidst the wild beauty of Montana's prized jewel where every moment is an invitation to explore.