Highlighting much of the beauty of the park, you’ll be exploring the Trail of Cedars, Avalanche Creek, and finally, be treated to stunning views of the lake and surrounding mountains. The hike to Avalanche Lake in Glacier National Park begins from the Trail of the Cedars Trailhead, located 5.5 miles east of the Lake McDonald Lodge. Highlighting much of the beauty of the park, you’ll be exploring the Trail of Cedars, Avalanche Creek, and finally, be treated to stunning views of the lake and surrounding mountains. One of the best hikes you can take in Glacier National Park to immerse yourself in the wilderness of Montana is the Avalanche Lake Trail. Check ahead of time to see the most recent road status. The gorge actually runs for quite a ways before peeling off into the thick woods. Details . Look closely and you'll also notice the lush green of ferns and mosses growing along the forest floor. You should also check out our tips for finding cheap flights.CAR RENTALWe use Discover Cars to compare car prices, find deals and book rentals.FIND ACCOMMODATION In between Sperry's two visits that summer, an unnamed local resident blazed a path to Avalanche Lake, making it, in all likelihood, the first trail to be constructed for tourists in the Glacier Park area. The park shuttle service runs from July 1st to Labor Day. before using any information on this site. While Avalanche Lake sits in the low-lying valley of the park, a hike to Hidden … We’ve visited nearly 100 countries on all 7 continents. Length: 4.6 miles. After leaving the gorge, the trail is fairly straight forward. Projected Initial Clearing: Winter Status 10/19/2020 per 256 . After you eat all your snacks and take plenty of selfies, all that’s left is to start the trek back to the parking lot. Although the western segment of the loop is slightly shorter, the eastern side is far more scenic. The first section of the hike enjoys fine views of Avalanche Creek. Along the Avalanche Lake Trail, there’s only an elevation gain of about 600 feet. It’s not unheard of to have these beasts of the wild wander up curiously to hikers, especially if visitors have food in their packs. Above the gorge, the trail follows Avalanche Creek for about a mile and then begins to work away from the creek towards the lake. Additionally, the trail c Avalanche Campground in located in one of the most popular sections of Glacier National Park west of the Continental Divide. But where can you find out if this hike is right for you and how to prepare for your trip down the Avalanche Lake Trail? Two popular day hikes, Trail of the Cedars, and Avalanche Lake, afford visitors spectacular scenery and glimpses of birds and wildlife that inhabit the area. 2 miles About half an hour 500 feet Easy TRY OUT AIRBNB Hikers on the eastern portion of the loop travel along a raised boardwalk as they pass through a forest of ancient western hemlocks and red cedars. Gathering my gear I hoped to see other hikers on the trail. Use Glacier's free shuttle service at this campground … You'll also find several make-shift benches to rest on as well. The only drawback will be the massive crowds. Trails The Trail of the Cedars, a wheelchair accessible trail, is a loop hike that begins and ends along the Going-to-the-Sun Road. https://www.alltrails.com/trail/us/colorado/avalanche-creek-trail Taking you step by step, you’ll know each bend of the trail and how to prepare for your adventure. It’s also the best place to enjoy the creek before you enter the gorge and begin heading up to the lake through the cedar forest. Intro. In the summer, Avalanche Lake is a staple hike along Going-To-The-Sun Road in Glacier National Park. It is spectacular in the warmer seasons, but transforms into a rarely seen beauty of a trek in the winter time. Avalanche Gorge from Trail of Cedars Don’t leave home without your own: Lonely Planet USA’s National Parks (Travel Guide). All rights reserved. Protect your investment and yourself. Whether you are bringing your kids along or not, the Avalanche Trail hike provides scenic views, little elevation gain, and a varied hiking experience. Please read this Disclaimer / Privacy Policy With the ice and slush gone, you can explore the park without having to worry about the weather. Coming in at 4.6 miles (round trip) and with less than a thousand feet of elevation gain, this hike is very doable for most school aged children and active adults. One thing that may give more independent hikers second thoughts about hiking the Avalanche Lake Trail is that it can get quite crowded during peak months. The mountain dominating the view towards the south is 7886-foot Little Matterhorn. To avoid the crowds and be assured of a parking space, hike early or late in the day, especially during the summer. Read our Disclosure here. Avalanche Lake is a popular day hike in Glacier National Park, becuase of its easy-to-reach location, gradual elevation gain, and beautiful end destination! Avalanche Lake Trail is one of the best day hikes in Glacier National Park. Comment document.getElementById("comment").setAttribute( "id", "ad2fc39c7522d4cbe7c660e842ce79f0" );document.getElementById("g97c0059f5").setAttribute( "id", "comment" ); We are David & Lina Stock, a married couple from NW Wisconsin who have been traveling together since 2001. The campground is situated within old growth cedar and hemlock trees, keeping the area cool during the summer months. If you’ve ever been to Banff National Park in Canada, this gorge looks just like a mini Johnstone Canyon! The hike to Avalanche Lake is one of the most popular trails in Glacier National Park, and for a good reason. Here, travelers can either pitch their tent or park their RV to truly immerse themselves in the beauty of the park overnight. Avalanche Lake Trail Avalanche Campground - Foot of Avalanche Lake/ 2.0 mi. The boardwalk along this portion of the loop encourages visitors to take their time as they pass through habitat more normally found on the Pacific Coast. Be sure to keep your eyes open; you’ll find all kinds of birds, deer, and sometimes bears on the trail to the lake. Trail Description: The hike to Avalanche Lake in Glacier National Park begins from the Trail of the Cedars Trailhead, located 5.5 miles east of the Lake McDonald Lodge. We use Skyscanner to compare prices and book flights. Avalanche Creek Campground, West Glacier: See traveler reviews, candid photos, and great deals for Avalanche Creek Campground, ranked #14 of 14 specialty lodging in West Glacier … There are two shuttles in Glacier National Park, one starting from St. Mary Visitor Center and the other from Apgar Visitor Center. But even in the peak season, the lake is large enough to avoid people. Difficulty: Moderate. The start of the trail is also located about five miles from the McDonald Lodge if you’re coming from the east. No matter how you get here, this is the start for the Avalanche Lake Trail. When walking through areas where the brush is thick near the trail, be sure to talk with your friends or make noise so that any animals, namely bears, that may be near the trail will not be startled by your presence and can move away before you reach them. Avalanche Lake Trail is a half-day hike starting with the Trail of the Cedars then along the Avalanche Creek gorge. The spur to Avalanche Lake is at the midpoint of the Trail of Cedars loop, just after you cross the bridge spanning Avalanche Creek (if you are coming from the east, as we did). Hats and sunscreen are both essential to avoid getting sunburnt. Avalanche Lake is perhaps the most heavily used backcountry lake in Glacier National Park. Dazzling hikers with its view of Bearhat Mountain, this is the spot where you’ll want to be sure to have your cameras ready. This is also where you’ll find the shuttle that drops passengers off from Apgar Visitor Center. This trail will have plenty of exposed roots and rocks along it, so be sure to watch for that. On a return trip later that summer Sperry would discover the glacier that now bears his name. The trail begins at a wheelchair accessible trail called the Trail of Cedars and starts 16 miles from the west entrance of Glacier National Park along Going-To-The-Sun Road. The hike to Avalanche Lake is one of the most popular trails in Glacier National Park, and for a good reason. Although this trail is considered moderate, it’s still important to know that the hike will take about half the day to complete. The breathtaking centuries-old trees don’t stop at the Trail of Cedars. In mid-December the vehicle closure is moved to Lake McDonald Lodge for the remainder of the winter. The Avalanche Lake Trail is an out and back trail that stretches a total of 4.5 miles. The most popular time of year to visit the park and hike to Avalanche Lake is from June to September. No worries, we have put together a guide highlighting the Best Time to Visit Glacier National Park. Trailhead: In the Avalanche Campground area, hike the Trail of the Cedars until the Avalanche Lake Trail takes off approximately halfway through. Avalanche Creek Gorge This is a very popular Glacier National Park hiking trail, so you won’t be hiking alone. Plant enthusiasts will appreciate the diverse species of flora. Although no longer in direct contact, the trail continues to loosely follow the creek up to the lake. Required fields are marked *. Be prepared for inclement weather and snow-covered, icy roads. ... Highline Trail - Grinnell Glacier Overlook/ 0.8 mi. As you proceed up the rise look towards your right and you'll notice a very dense forest. So pack your bags and lace up your boots; your journey to Montana starts here! The trail starts at Trail of the Cedars and gradually increases in elevation. 7:00 am: Meet outside of The Glacier Institute Field Camp Library/Office. At the Trail of Cedars/ Avalanche Creek Trailhead, you’ll find a large parking lot, perfect for pulling over and exploring the trail before you head back out onto the scenic drive. What we heard was the roaring Avalanche Creek (apparently they use the term "creek" very differently in Montana. Take your time to peek over the ledge and admire the colors of moss, trees and glacial water that squeezes between the rocks. An alternative option is taking the shuttle to Avalanche Creek. If you look closely at the cliffs and mountains that surround the lake you'll notice several long waterfalls plunging hundreds of feet as they make their way towards the shore. Many of these waterfalls originate from Sperry Glacier, which rests beyond Little Matterhorn and can't be seen from the lake. Your email address will not be published. Copyright Along the way, about 1.5-miles into the hike, there are … Just past this point is the Avalanche Lake Trail junction. Avalanche Gorge Avalanche Gorge. 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