Glacier National Park Overview
You don’t even need to see what’s around the next bend to be stopped in your tracks at Glacier National Park. The sheer beauty is jaw dropping from every angle. With over 1 million acres of towering, jagged peaks, cascading waterfalls, wild meadows and sparkling waters, plus wildlife watching and recreation opportunities, it is, quite simply awe-inspiring. The raw splendor of glacial-carved terrain is unlike any other place on earth. There’s something to be said about climbing high enough to actually see as far as the eye can see. And when you experience that kind of vastness in Glacier National Park, it’s not a something you’ll soon—or ever—forget.
Glacier National Park has one of the largest intact ecosystems in the temperate zone, and it’s surprisingly easy to explore by road or trail. The Going-to-the-Sun Road—an engineering marvel and National Historic Landmark—takes visitors through the heart of the park over Logan Pass and is one of the most scenic drives in North America.
The Best Things to See in Glacier National Park
The clear blue waters of Cracker Lake are set off by the towering Mount Siyeh that rises up majestically in the background. The view is simply stunning. Rock flour silt, combined with the constant low temperatures of the lake, make it a crystal clear aqua blue.
Glacier National Park is filled with many different species of wildlife. Due to the lack of development, it is a haven for rare and endangered species. Visitors may catch a rare glimpse of the majestic bald eagles that soar near the mountains. The two endangered species that are rarely sighted are grizzly bears and Canadian lynx. This park holds the largest populations of these animals outside of Alaska.
Triple Divide Peak
This 8,000-foot peak is a unique landmark in Glacier National Park because of its status as a hydrological apex. This means that water shed from the peak of the mountain eventually drains into the Atlantic, Pacific and Arctic Oceans. Hikes around this mountain are multiday affairs but well worth the amazing scenery.
Directly in the center of Glacier National Park, Rogers Pass was the first area of the park open to the public. Consequently, it contains some of the most developed areas. A scenic train ride allows visitors to see the pass from the comfort of a rail car.
Bird Woman Falls
Water flowing from a glacier remnant creates this nearly 600-foot waterfall that flows down Mount Oberlin. The large falls can be seen from nearly two miles away. Most visitors view the falls from a nearby highway, but some choose to climb Mount Oberlin. It is ranked as the second easiest peak to climb in the entire park.
The fast melting Illecillewaet Glacier is a good example of the type of glacier that carved the geography of Glacier National Park. The glacier is surrounded by breathtaking mountain views.
Two Medicine Lake
The deep blue waters of Two Medicine Lake perfectly captures the beauty of the far northwest. Stunning snow capped mountains provide a backdrop to the rippling lake. Visitors can rent kayaks, canoes or rowboats or take a guided boat tour and witness the natural beauties from the centre of the lake.
Best Time to Visit Glacier National Park
The best time of year to visit Glacier National Park is during the warm summer months of July, August, and September. June and October are also lovely times to go, but the higher elevations of the Going-to-the-Sun Road, including Logan Pass, may be blocked by snow.
Video Credit: GlacierNPS