When we were planning our road trip to Yellowstone, we figured we should see other spots along the way since we didn’t know when we’d get back to that area of the US. So along the route, we diverted North through Montana to see Glacier National Park. We didn’t know much about it, other than we knew it would be beautiful. When we booked the trip and did a little research, it looked like not everything would be open in May when we would be visiting since they are usually still plowing snow in parts of the park. That ended up being true, including the Going to the Sun Road which is supposed to be stunning and drives you through the whole park, however that’s not to say we still didn’t see a lot and were able to take in the park in late May.
We started exploring West Glacier National Park, entering through the West entrance which is about 45 minutes from Kalispell, Montana where we were staying. The highlight upon entering the West entrance is definitely Lake McDonald, which spans for a long way and offers stunning views of the mountains in the distance and colored rocks along its shores. Make sure you stop along the pull outs to take in all the views out over Lake McDonald, it really is stunning. We went first thing in the morning and the stillness was so peaceful. The early morning light held a blue tint on everything, which made the scene so tranquil and quiet.
When we were there in late May, we could drive the Going to the Sun road only just past the lodge. But not to worry, you can still see more of the park on the East side which I’ll be talking about tomorrow!
Tips for Glacier National Park
-Have $30 prepared to pay the entry fee to the park for a single vehicle for a week.
-Be prepared to drive a lot.
-Stop in the pull outs, don’t pull over on the side of the road.
-Have your camera ready as amazing spots just appear suddenly.
-Bring a paper map as there isn’t much cell service in the park and we found that the signage isn’t great to help you figure out where to go.
-The Going to the Sun Road which runs through Glacier National Park isn’t usually open fully until mid-July, but there is still much to see if you go at other times of the year as well.