158 Hiking trails of Glacier National Park Custom Designed by Lisa Middleton
Glacier National Park Hiking Trails
Located on the Continental Divide in northwestern Montana, Glacier National Park was established in 1910. Before the region became a national park, it was first home to Native Americans, and later the Blackfeet in the east and the Flathead in the west. The Going-to-the-Sun Road provides access to the heart of the park. Nicknamed the American Alps, the park preserves about 1, 013, 572 acres of amazing glaciated landscape. The park is largely a mountainous area that was carved and shaped by the glaciers of the last ice age. The majestic scenery of Glacier National Park is a combination of towering rugged mountain peaks, lush coniferous forests, glacial-carved valleys, lakes, waterfalls, wildflower meadows, abundant wildlife, and prairie grasslands.
The park is rich in multiple species of plants that are native to different areas of North America. Plants that call Glacier home includes ponderosa pine, western red cedar, lodgepole pine, aspen, and Douglas-firs, Engelmann spruce, subalpine fur, limber pine, western larch, and cottonwood. Beargrass- a tall flowering plant can also be found throughout the park particularly in July and August; other wild flowers such as monkey flower, glacier lily, fireweed, balsamroot, and Indian paintbrush also exist in Glacier.
A wide variety and bounty of animals reside in Glacier National Park including bears, moose, deer, sheep, bobcats, coyotes, and mountain goats. Endangered species like wolverines and Canadian lynxes are also present in the park, as well as numerous species of fish, bird, reptile and amphibian.
Also known as a hiker’s park, Glacier has more than 700 miles of maintained trails. The trails have different features that offer particular scenery of waterfalls, lakes, alpine meadows, and forest, along with other features. Hiking trails are located in several different areas of the park including Logan Pass and Many Glacier, Two Medicine, Goat Haunt, St. Mary Valley, and Lake McDonald Valley. Going-to-the-Sun Road boasts almost 50 miles of hiking trail in Glacier, making it the longest of all the trails. A popular hike is the Highline Loop which follows along the Continental Divide and offers spectacular views of wildflowers and wildlife. One of the toughest hikes in Glacier is the Swiftcurrent Pass which goes up and above the Swiftcurrent Valley floor, passing by a few lakes and a waterfall, and offers amazing scenery once above the valley floor.
Glacier National Park hiking trails are many and of varying difficulty, but they all offer a unique view of an amazing scenic wonderland.
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