Glacier National Park also known as “Crown of the Continent” is considered one of the spectacular national parks of US. Park is popular for its astonishing scenery and wilderness. Glacier National Park is wide spread over million acres making the park to separate in different areas namely Many Glacier, Two Medicines, North Fork , Goat Haunt, Going-To-The-Sun road.
Many Glacier is not accessible from within the main part of Glacier National Park (along the Going to the Sun Road) unless you hike in from Highline Trail at Logan Pass. If driving, you must exit the park at St. Mary Entrance station and then drive for 30 minutes to enter the Many Glacier part of Glacier National Park. Drive to Many Glacier is rough and bumpy. Expect big Poth holes and free roaming cattle on the road.
To see the entire park in one or two day is not possible due to its large area and 50 miles scenic narrow roads. The speed limit is 35 mph on the famous Going-To-The-Sun road. There are number of Things to do at Glacier National Park.
Things to do at Many Glacier
Many Glacier Hotel
The Many Glacier historic lodge standing amidst traditional rugged mountain peaks with glaciers along the Swiftcurrent lake is a spectacular place to begin the adventure. The Many Glacier area looks different than the West Glacier area. The scenery is extremely beautiful and serene. It looks like Switzerland.
Many Glacier Hotel opened to visitors from 1915 was built with Swiss Chalet architecture style. The hotel has an impressive rustic look build with wooden beams and a big lobby area with huge fireplace. Apart from enjoying the lobby, there is a big gift shop, snack bar, restaurant, public restrooms, water fountain.
Don’t forget to enjoy the view of stunning Swiftcurrent lake from different level patios of the hotel. Even if you are not staying at the hotel, a visit to the hotel is a must. Parking is available at the parking lot above hill next to the hotel. The Glacier National Park Red bus tours also stop there.
As the name suggests, Many glaciers had ancient ice age glaciers that are shrinking and reducing in numbers. There are few glacier left which can be viewed from Many Glacier Hotel or for closer look one can opt for boat, horse ride or foot. Grinnell Glacier and Iceberg Lake are the famous glaciers that can be reached with strenuous hiking. Global Climate Scientists have predicted that all the glaciers will be gone by 2030 due to global warming.
Swiftcurrent Lake Nature Trail
Trailhead: Swiftcurrent Lake Parking Lot/ Picnic area.
Trail Feature: Trail around Swiftcurrent Lake through forest.
RoundTrip: 2 miles
The Nature trail is the best way to spend time and explore the wilderness with family and young children. Swiftcurrent Lake nature trail start from Parking lot or from Many Glacier Picnic area or from Many Glacier Hotel. The trail is flat and goes around swiftcurrent lake through dense alpine forest with amazing views of lake and mountain peaks throughout the trail.
The nature trail is wonderful for seeing the wild flowers and sometimes the wildlife. It’s possible to encounter deer, mountain goats or bears on this trail. So always keep the bear safety in mind.
Boating & Kayaking
If hiking is not your choice of interest, then you can take a boat tour. The scenic boat tour takes on two lake tour for 1.5 hours. Enjoy the stunning views of Swiftcurrent lake and Lake Josephine. If you want to enjoy the solitude of Many glacier area then you might take canoe, kayaks or rowboats on rent that are available near the Many Glacier hotel.
Famous Hikes at Many Glacier
For visitors there’s not as much to do on this side of park. But the Many Glacier area is Hiker’s paradise. The most popular trails of Glacier National Park are in the Many Glacier area
Grinnell Glacier – 10.6 miles, Strenuous
Grinnell Lake – 7 miles, Moderate
Iceberg Lake – 9.6 miles, Moderate
Ptarmigan Tunnel – 10.6 miles, Strenuous
We already spent our vacation days exploring and hiking other trails at Glacier National Park and were left with no more time to hike these trails at Many Glacier. Hike to St. Mary Falls and Virginia Falls, Highline trail, Hidden Lake Lookout and Hidden Lake are famous day hikes at Glacier National Park.
Somehow we manage to roam around Many glacier famous pull out points. We will be going back again for exploring the trails at Many Glacier.
Camp grounds of Many Glacier are the most popular camping grounds at Glacier National Park. Due to its popularity, It is recommended to reserve the sites earlier. There is also the option of Primitive Camping depending on the Climate conditions.
Many Glacier Hotel/Lodge does provide the opportunities for dinning , interpretive programs, boat tours, horse rides, shuttle service, and Red Bus tours. So don’t forget to have a glance in to the historic hotel.
Where to Stay at Many Glacier
Swiftcurrent Motor Inn and Cabins – To avoid commuting time in park, visitor/hikers prefer to stay in rustic cabins at Swiftcurrent Motor Inn and Cabins. The Cabins are located near to the trailhead leading to famous trails of Iceberg Lake, Ptarmigan Lake and Ptarmigan Tunnel.
Many Glacier Lodge/Hotel – If budget is not an issue then Many Glacier Lodge is the best place to stay in at Many Glacier. The Swiss architecture , the rustic style and the unique location of the historic hotel on the shore of Swiftcurrent Lake attracts the visitors. It feels like living in Switzerland.
Waterton Glacier Suites – Budget friendly stay in Canada.
If you’re planning on staying in the Many Glacier Lodge/Hotel make the reservation well in advance. Due to the scenic location of the hotel, it tends to get fully booked during vacation time.
Have you been to Many Glacier? Feel free to comment below and tell me what all you did at Many Glacier. We will be definitely going back to Many Glacier to do some of the epic hikes.
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