Explore the most popular trails near West Glacier with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

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West Glacier, Montana Map
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awesome out and back. great way to end a weeklong trip. don't get fooled by the great opening just shy of the peak take photos and go all the way to top as it is worth the extra couple hundred feet ascent.

hiking
20 days ago

We hiked up and back Mt Brown in about 5.5 hours. It was moderate temperature on the first 2.5 miles or so - we took most layers off as the exertion of hiking up steeply inclined trail got us pretty warm. After about 2.5 miles, we started getting into more weather and by the top, there were a couple inches of snow and it was blowing very hard. We put all our layers back on by then and were grateful for them. The view was pretty though we were mostly surrounded by clouds as the day was overcast so it was hard to see too much. The lookout building at the very top was a cool summit find as well. Our fitness levels are moderate to fit and we found the hike to be difficult but entirely doable, particularly as we kept a low key, steady pace. One thing to note is that from the Lake McDonald lodge parking lot, it is 5.3 miles to the lookout building at the summit making the round trip 10.6 miles (not 9.2 as the Mount Brown Lookout Trail info on AllTrails indicates).

walking
26 days ago

Easy, ADA accessible trail. Shaded with large cedar trees. We were not planning to stop, but decided to at the last second. Good for kids too.

walking
30 days ago

More of a stroll than a hike, there isn’t a lot to see on this trail, but it does serve a purpose.

The entire trail is boardwalk and pavement with handicap accessibility throughout. The loop winds through heavy forest, and the park has installed signs to educate walkers about trees on the trail. The entire path is covered by the forest canopy, so there is no exposure. Overall the trail is reminiscent of an eastern US nature trail.

If you have children, mobility issues, or are just tired from some other trails, this is good way to spend a half hour or so. It can help you warm up for a more strenuous hike and learn more about the trees that populate a portion of the park.

A nice hike with fantastic views for the last mile and a quarter. The rest of the trail is in the woods with very little scenery. The trail is also overgrown so morning hikes will be soggy from the waist down. Once you clear the trees and get to the steeper section near the top the trail is worth the effort. The trail is rated "hard" and I agree. I did the 12 miles round trip (from parking lot at Bowman) in 4.5 hours which was pushing it hard. If you take your time it wouldn't be as tough.

hiking
1 month ago

Some areas along the trail are muddy and overgrown with brush. Expect plants to get up to 4' high. Very remote trail compared to some of the others in Glacier. I saw more bears than people on the trail (and I saw 1 bear). It does offer some good views. Is it something that'll blow your socks off? Probably not... but I don't regret doing the whole trek.

hiking
1 month ago

A friend and I hiked from the trail head to Grace Lake (the far east end of the trial) and back. We camped at Logging Lake campground on the way out and the way back, and spent one night at Grace Lake campground in between. There is also a campground about 3.5 miles past Logging Lake campground called Adair, but I would skip it if your itinerary allows. Of course you need a permit for any camping in the back country at Glacier NP, so plan ahead. This out-and-back route is a bit overgrown in places (especially as you get closer to Grace Lake), but it is a good relatively level hike with some rewarding views near the campgrounds. The park service cabin on the north end of Logging Lake is a nice stop and the grizzlies have done a number on the logs. You may be disappointed to get this route if you applied for another route, but you will enjoy it nonetheless. If you get to Grace Lake, don't miss the opportunity to make your way to the east end of the lake for a great view back of the peaks back to the west (you can't see them from the camp ground side of the lake).

Great winter hike! We hiked this in January and March.

Whether you’re biking the road in May, driving it in the crowds of July, or enjoying the quiet after 10pm, this road is unbelievable.

Our family of four loved this hike! It was a fairly strenuous hike due tonsteep grade of incline... but so worth the burning legs!

We loved our friendly tour guides. the mountain goats! Several of them followed us, walking when we walked, and stopping with us when we stopped.

Both the view and snow up top at the lookout were super welcome treats following the ascent!

Would definitely take this hike again!!

hiking
2 months ago

This would be a great option if you're looking for a workout and not much more. The initial climb is pretty grueling with no real scenery. There are some huckleberry patches beyond that which might attract some bears, although we didn't see any. The lake at the end of the trail makes for a nice spot to break for lunch before turning back.

hiking
2 months ago

Relative to the effort the reward is just ok, not great. Positives: Not many people, nice views at top, comfortable well maintained trail. Negatives: Very buggy all the way including at the top, the lookout tower appeared to be closed to the public when we arrived - there was a chain across the staircase leading up to the lookout with a "privacy" sign. Also noticed several people in the tower - perhaps it was rented/reserved? Is this possible? So after a long hike, we never got to go up to the tower, sat outside under the the tower and got eaten alive by mosquitos and flies. Compared to other hikes in Glacier this is average at best

What a great hike with a gentle graded trail to a firetower with awesome views.

Couldn't get to Bowman or Kintla since the parking lots were full, so we settled on Logging Lake. We only hiked for a total of 5 miles before we needed to go get ready for our elopement in the evening, but the 5 miles we did had nice views for what we did see.
This hike was super buggy though.
We didn't see anyone else on the trail the entire time either.

Be warned, not for the faint of heart! we took about 5 hours making it up the hill, make sure you bring lots of water and food! Make sure to tell the man on the mountain hello and stop to hear his stories if he is there! It is absolutely and whole heartedly worth it. Please don't shy away from this because it is a difficult hike.

This was a somewhat tiring hike near the end, but a fun challenge. The signs at the beginning warn of the frequency of bear sightings so we made sure to talk (almost yell!) as we walked to keep the bears at a safe distance. We saw almost no people along the way and we were gifted beautiful views at the top. I only wish we had brought more food to enjoy during our lunch break looking out over the mountain ridges and lakes!

hiking
2 months ago

Parking available at Logan Pass. Highline Trail shares a parking lot with Hidden Lake Trailhead, so lot generally fills prior to 08:00.

Climbing up the Garden Wall was previously a bucket list item of mine. Almost a year ago, researching the Highline Trail prompted my father and I to spawn a trip to Montana. Twelve months and thousands of miles later, we clipped our packs and proceeded past the Highline Trailhead. The trail begins somewhat intimidatingly, carved into a mountainside with sheer cliffs to your left, metal handrail to your right. This marks the most unsettling portion of the trail. Gradually separating from Going to the Sun Road, the hike gradually increases in both serenity and enjoyability.

Arguably Glacier's most recognizable image- Reynolds Mountain behind Oberlin Bend- presents itself around 2.5 miles into the hike. The Highline Trail encounters dramatic scenery shortly thereafter. Haystack Butte sits behind a 180-degree view of Glacier National Park, a welcome backrest to the breathtaking vistas of Mount Cannon, Mount Gould, Reynolds Mountain, and Mount Oberlin bathed in sunlight. This vista could surely knock you off your feet. Presently, views of McDonald Creek Valley with sporadic forest occupy the mind until the Garden Wall junction.

Devoid of switchbacks, deceivingly steep, and rocky, the Garden Wall spur demands respect. This 0.6-mile cut shoots up over 800 feet in elevation over the western drainage basin. In return, however, this magnificent venture yields perhaps the greatest views in Montana. Indeed, even before the glacial overlook, the western views of Heavens Peak and waterfalls are- for lack of better term- unforgettable. Yet the climax of the Garden Wall is undoubtedly Glacial Overlook. A steep trail suddenly turns flat, dotted with four trees, and you emerge on a saddle between Peak 7980 and Peak 8479.

The view's reveal is unrivaled by anything I've ever done. Ralston Peak in Tahoe, Eagle Peak in Yosemite, Frigid Air Pass in Colorado; these falter in comparison to the dramatic uncovering of Upper Grinnell Lake. Three steps mark the difference between rock obstruction and complete vista. It's impossible to take in everything at once: indeed, the insurmountable slopes of Mount Gould giving way to Grinnell Glacier is stunning enough. Throw in the crystalline waters of Upper Grinnell Lake, the distant Lake Josephine, Allen Mountain, and you're overwhelmed by beauty.

Upon emerging at the Glacial Overlook, I thought the view couldn't possibly get better. Then, heeding the advice of fellow hikers, I trekked an additional 200 feet towards point 7980. The vista expanded. Almost the entirety of Grinnell Drainage Basin was visible, ranging from Salamander Glacier to Lake Sherburne. This additional trip, even after 800 feet of grueling ascent, marked the complete climax of this hike.

Everything thereafter is simply dispensable gravy. Admittedly, the descent down to The Loop is decent at best; surely my expectations were inflated by Heaven spilling onto the Garden Wall. Granite Chalet is little more than a historic tourist trap, the Granite Park Trail weaves through the remnants of a devastated forest, and the 3,500 feet of descent don't lift spirits. However, if we were to walk through a mosquito-infested hellhole laced with the occasional muddy leech, this hike still would've commanded five stars. The experience of the Garden Wall is simply that powerful.

My father and I begun hiking at 06:45, passed two groups of hikers, and escaped a swiftly-moving third. We had the Highline Trail to ourselves thereafter. I would recommend hiking by 06:15 if you desire serenity; even if you don't mind crowds, an early start is integral to sunrise views. Our two-man crew was the second group up the Garden Wall (summit 09:15). After a 25-minute experience of ripping winds and scintillating vistas, we passed some 25-35 people on the descent.

If you have a single day to spend in Glacier, this is your trail. Don't overthink it. This is perhaps Montana's most remarkable view, on Montana's most acclaimed trail, in Montana's renowned national park. Above all, it was worth waiting an entire year for.

hiking
2 months ago

Short, nearly flat loop through a cedar grove with a few other types of conifer trees. Mostly asphalt or boardwalk. Popular because it is the easiest trail in Glacier National Park. Many people also hike this trail as the start of a hike to Avalanche Lake. Overall, a pleasant short walk if you are not up for one of the park's harder trails.

hiking
2 months ago

We did a ranger-lead tour. The individual was quite knowledgeable about the flora and fauna. This hike is not as busy as some of the other ones in the park, is fairly easy, and offers good views at the rocky point of Lake McDonald.

Bring bug spray on this trail with a lot of deet.

hiking
2 months ago

We hiked this trail and there’s a nice little bonus hike here to go out to the lake. Beautiful historic cedars!

carry bear spray.

Pretty and steep. Last portion to the lake is absolutely amazing. It was so quiet!

hiking
2 months ago

Get there early - 9 am parking will go fast. The hike is relatively easy but the views when you get there are worth it.

hiking
2 months ago

Easy, beautiful as always!

hiking
2 months ago

Fantastic trail with awesome views the entire way. Steep for the last 0.6 miles before the turn around but worth the view.

*when you get to Garden Wall overlooking the valley at the turn around walk up the other side of the pass another 0.1 miles as it make the view much more breathtaking.

scenic driving
2 months ago

SO BEAUTIFUL! Pictures doesn’t serve the scenery justice.

trail running
2 months ago

Another great run/hike in Glacier! Lots of wildflowers, gradual grade until the last .80 miles then it got very steep. But worth the views! A lot of people but not overly crowded. week day run for us.

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