Few highways in the world can compete with Glacier National Park’s Going-to-the-Sun Road. Climbing from the shores of McDonald Lake to the jaw-dropping snowfields along the Continental Divide, the road tunnels through mountains and parallels foaming rivers.
Though Glacier National Park is the heart and soul of this region, there’s tons more to do. Start by walking the upscale streets of downtown Whitefish, where you can find custom jewelry and breathtaking art. Just miles away, Whitefish Mountain Resort is one of the nation’s leaning ski areas, with bottomless cold smoke snow and four seasons of adventure.
Flathead Lake is one of the West’s biggest lakes – its cobalt-blue waters are framed by dense forests and soaring mountains. Kalispell is the economic heart of the region, home to an international airport and historic downtown. Plenty of other towns will keep your attention though – spend a day in Bigfork at its renowned playhouse or use Columbia Falls as a gateway to the deep valleys of the North Fork.
Around the area you’ll find upscale restaurants, award-winning breweries and distilleries, and farm-fresh produce from orchards along the lake shores.
Glacier National Park
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America’s ultimate road trip is a day on the Going-to-the-Sun Road in Glacier National Park.
This 50-mile two-lane road dissects the park. Low down, motor along Lake McDonald before climbing past cascades, waterfalls, and trailheads, then rising into stunning alpine scenery at Logan Pass. Here, a carpet of wildflowers and curious mountain goats greet hikers trekking across snowfields to memorable overlooks. The east side of the road features more lakes, waterfalls, and wildlife.
Glacier is one of the nation’s marquee national parks – more than 1 million acres of forest, mountains, lakes, rivers, wildlife and, of course, glaciers.
You can see the park’s namesake attractions from many spots, but this park is also home to heart-pounding adventure. Hundreds of miles of hiking trails lead through temperate rainforest and across alpine meadows. Long lakes pierce the deep wilderness. Historic spots and ranger-led hikes keep kids and grandparents alike happy.
Bring your hiking boots to Glacier Country to enjoy hundreds of miles of trails.
One gem is the mellow trail to Birch Lake, which starts in the mountains above Bigfork. Or, catch a gondola up at Whitefish Mountain Resort and let gravity carry you down.
For the view of a lifetime, huff up to Stahl Peak and its fire lookout. For family-friendly fun, hop on the Great Northern Greenway, a former rail line.
With a name like Glacier Country, you should not be surprised that the snow is good. Skiers and snowboards come here from around the world to sample powder and jaw-dropping views.
Whitefish Mountain Resort is known for its slopeside lodging, smiling service, and long season. The locals head to Blacktail, a down-home mountain which features dirt-cheap prices and uncrowded slopes. From the top skiers can peer into Glacier National Park.