Glacier National Park: Going-to-the-Sun Road (West Glacier to Saint Mary)

#8 of 134 trails in Glacier National Park

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Glacier National Park: Going-to-the-Sun Road (West Glacier to Saint Mary) is a 48.7 mile point-to-point scenic drive located near Essex, Montana that features mountains, lakes, spectacular views and wildlife.

Going-to-the-Sun Road in Montana's Glacier National Park spans 50 miles through the park's wild interior, winding around mountainsides and treating visitors to some of the best sights in northwest Montana and the whole US.

References:
Going to the Sun detailed FAQS: http://www.nps.gov/glac/planyourvisit/gttsrfaq.htm
Construction: http://www.nps.gov/glac/planyourvisit/gtsrtop10.htm

Going to the Sun Road in Glacier National Park is in the northwest corner of Montana along the spine of the Rocky Mountains.

West Entrance Near Kalispell, Whitefish, and Columbia Falls, the West Entrance accesses the Lake McDonald area, Park Headquarters, the Apgar Visitor Center and the west entry point to the Going-to-the-Sun-Road. From Kalispell, take Highway 2 north to West Glacier (approximately 33 miles).

Ample parking along the route, with major parking near Lake McDonald, Logan's Pass VC, and St. Mary VC.

Also camping, lodging, etc.

Detailed info here: http://www.nps.gov/glac/planyourvisit/hours.htm
http://www.nps.gov/glac/planyourvisit/reservations.htm

Glacier National Park
Park Headquarters
PO Box 128
West Glacier, MT 59936

Visitor Information (406) 888-7800

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505 Completed 169 Reviews

While you can drive this in 2-3 hours, we made a day out of the Going to the Sun Road, pulling over and taking several hikes along the way. Stops included McDonald Falls, Avalanche Lake (4 mi. RT), Birdwoman Falls Overlook, Weeping Wall, Hidden Lake Overlook Trail (3 mi. RT and had lots of snow along the trail in July!), Logan Pass VC, the start of the Highline Trail, Jackson Glacier Overlook, St. Mary's Falls, Sunrift Gorge Overlook, Baring Falls, Sunpoint Nature Trail, and the Wild Goose Island turnout. While the clouds were in an out, we stayed dry, saw Rocky Mountain Goats and Big Horn Sheep, as well as some really spectacular views. One of the most spectacular drives in the US. Not to miss!

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7 Completed 6 Reviews

July was hot and busy in Glacier N.P.! We had decided to go the week after Independence day and it was crowded! Despite that, we had the most fabulous trip! We saw so many beautiful things! We camped in the park the night before driving the "Going to the Sun" road and it was one of the most amazing sights I've seen in the US. Definitely in the top 10 Drives for me! The spectacular views, the waterfalls coming right over the road in spots, wildflowers everywhere and someone else to drive so I could take the pictures!
I will never forget that. I was astounded at the sheer rugged beauty that surrounded me. Amazing!

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338 Completed 340 Reviews

One of the most scenic drive that I've been on in the Western US

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96 Completed 56 Reviews

Going-to-the-sun road is one of the best ways to view and capture the essence of Glacier National Park, with little effort. Overall, this scenic drive will offer magnificent shots of towering mountains, stretches that wind by lakes, cool mountain air, and marveled engineering feats all in one go. This is a popular drive and, as such, people are out in droves. I highly recommend taking this trek early in the day. This will also offer one interesting lighting for photographic moments. Make sure to fill up on Gas, however, as there is none available while on the scenic byway. Also, anticipate 2-3 hours for drive time (especially if one chooses to frequently pull over for photographs, which I recommend). I also highly suggest one pulls over at the Wild Goose Island viewpoint, near St. Mary Lake. I think this provides the best view on the entire stretch of road!

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24 Completed 6 Reviews

This was absolutely the most beautiful road I have ever been on, and I live in Utah and have been on some spectacular drives there as well. From the cascading waterfalls everywhere to the beautiful wild flowers, the towering peaks and green valley below it was a snapshot everywhere you turn. We were also able to see mountain goats up at Logan Pass which was very cool. The road has very heavy traffic, so don't expect to breeze through unimpeded, but this should be on the bucket list of anyone who loves stunning scenery.

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334 Completed 334 Reviews

This road is just about as scenic as you can get. My problem is that is just too far from Texas!

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21 Completed 19 Reviews

Most Spectacular road I have ever driven on !! Beauty around this place leaves you speach less at times. I am certainly going back there

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33 Completed 11 Reviews

This drive is so beautiful!

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68 Completed 61 Reviews

Glacier National Park is one of the prettiest, most scenic areas in the entire state. Between the lakes, trails, hillsides, fauna, and wildlife there is plenty to see and enjoy!

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133 Completed 132 Reviews

While many of the glaciers are no longer visible from the road, it was nevertheless a beautiful drive, which we plan to repeat in a few months. It is worth stopping at St. Mary Lake, Lake McDonald, and especially Logan Pass, where a short hike provides not only great scenery, but the potential for up-close and personal encounters with mountain goats, if not bears. At one stop, we had a great binocular view of a near encounter between a foraging black bear and a foraging grizzly. I'm not sure if I regret their missing each other or not. Even if you don't do anything else along the road, the drive is worthwhile.

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