Glacier, why you so ugly?

Glacier National Park

We’ve visited this park many times… but never before in the fall.

We feel soo stupid now…

Going to the sun road fall Glacier National Park

It was decided as we drove, and had to pick our jaws off the floor of Lola, that fall is the ONLY time to visit this National Park.

  • Less crowds (they have 2.2 million visitors a year)
  • Going-to-the-sun-road is open to Logan Pass (it typically closes the third Monday in October and it takes the brave snow removal team until the start of July to have it open)
  • Most importantly- the fall colors!

The views are amazing…. but Glacier isn’t a one trick pony!

Going-to-the-sun-road is approximately 50 miles and traverses an epic climb to 6,646 feet at Logan Pass. As you climb in elevation the views get more spectacular.

Most people start at the west entrance, drive to the visitor center located at Logan Pass and then travel back down the same way.

It’s a shame…

Although the East side of the park doesn’t have the butt puckering drop offs like it’s sister to the west, it does offer…

  • More elbow space (AKA less visitors)
  • Typically more wildlife (we saw 5 bears and 1 moose this trip)
  • Breath taking change from the Rocky Mountains to the plains

And no… We didn’t manage to get any good photo’s of the bears…

toyota landcruiser st.mary lake glacier national parkAs you keep heading East, St. Mary’s Lake appears to your right. It offers a boat launch where  you can hop aboard a scenic boat tour. It’s unneeded if you are short on time to fully enjoy this breath taking place.

You leave the Park in St. Mary, Montana and we choose to head south towards Two Medicine Lake and the town of East Glacier as we heard that there was an amazing Mexican restaurant calling our names.

We came across some cattle that gave us our first traffic jam of the day before we came to the turn off for Two Medicine Lake. It was this area where we marked bears off of wildlife bingo.

Two Medicine Lake feels different from the visitor packed west side of the park. The camp store was boarded up and closed for the season, but that isn’t what we came for anyways…

upper two medicine lake glacier national park

We back tracked to the main road and continued south where we hit some road construction that escorted us to Hwy 49 or as the locals call it, Looking Glass Hill. We pulled over and let others go around us as they seemed to be in a hurry after waiting for the pilot car.

When we hit the highway again, we noticed a dirt road…

Correction… more like two ruts on their way up a hill

We decided that Lola had been forced to drive the nice paved road long enough and we let her do what she was born to do. We had no idea where this road (using that term loosely) was going to take us, but when we got there it was a beautiful place to capture where the mountains meet the plains.

looking glass hill toyota landcruiser montana

As we entered East Glacier we passed the Glacier Park Lodge. Neither of us had seen it before and it was an impressive building. We drove under the tunnel and found the Mexican joint… and the long line of other folks who had heard about it…

Our stomachs weren’t going to wait quietly– so we decided to back track to the Glacier Park Lodge and enjoy dinner there.

The lodge was started in 1913 by rail road workers, and the train is still active and many people travel to the lodge this way. The lodge is even more impressive on the inside. The large timbers that construct the lodge were a main topic of conversation as we ate and drank the local spirits.

The food was delicious, but the ambiance could be kicked up a notch or two. Either way, we both agreed that we should come back and stay for a night… and perhaps visit that amazing Mexican restaurant.

Have you visited Glacier National Park?

If so, leave a comment below and be sure to check out our Instagram!


One Comment on “Glacier, why you so ugly?

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