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  1. #1
    Registered User backtrack213's Avatar
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    Default Transportation to Glacier NP

    I am flying into Kalispell and have no idea how to get to Glacier NP from there. I read of free shuttles but do they run from the airport? If I have to pay for a ride what's the cheapest option? I would prefer getting over to the east side to hop on the CDT rather than start on the west side and make my way over to the CDT.

  2. #2

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    I took Amtrak. It stops at both east and west Glacier.

    Fly someplace with an Amtrak station. Or just get on the train at NYC. It takes a couple of days, but is an interesting ride.
    The AT - It has it's ups and downs...

  3. #3
    Registered User Ben795's Avatar
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    GNP is incredible! Went a couple years ago, stayed in West Glacier. Drive Going to the Sun road to East, and back. Lots of folks driving around out there. Montana folks are super nice. I bet you could do alright hitchhiking to GNP from Kalispell. We Day hiked, did Avalanche Lake just outside WG, and Hidden Lake up at Logan Pass on The Road.. beautiful! Ptarmigan Tunnel hike is on my list for my next visit. Enjoy... itís one of the most beautiful places on this planet. Been to most NP in the US, and this is my fave.. less crowd, incredible scenery. One suggestion.. get a Bear Spray. We saw a mother Griz and cubs on Avalanche, scared the You know what out of my wife. She almost wanted to turn back but for a really nice Ranger who calmed her down, and we waited for the family to move way off trail.
    Last edited by Ben795; 06-18-2019 at 13:56.

  4. #4
    Registered User backtrack213's Avatar
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    I might give hitching a try but I would prefer some kind of shuttle or something to speed the process up. Thankfully I land early afternoon and have plenty of time to travel there and get on trail.

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    Registered User Ben795's Avatar
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    We took a day trip to Kalispell, from our home base in West Glacier, as well as a drive to Whitefish, And Hungry Horse Dam. Kallispell to WG (where youíll get shuttle to EG) is not really that far, about an hour drive as I remember, we travel a lot, we drove there from Ma. An hour out there is a trip around the block. we even drove around Flathead Lake and to Missoula just to check it out. Being from the Northeast, Boston area, I probably wouldnít pick up a hitchhiker around here, but we would have there in a heartbeat. Lots of folks with backpacks, and if youíre looking friendly, smiling and non-threatening, youíll get a ride without issue. We Spent a week out there, itís a special place, and Montana folk are really nice. Have fun, you will love Montana, we did, and plan to go back. Google: Eagle Transit Kalispell, info and shuttle schedules on their website. Ben795
    Last edited by Ben795; 06-18-2019 at 19:46.

  6. #6
    Registered User Venchka's Avatar
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    The Glacier Park website explains all of the Park Service free bus routes and the fee based private shuttles between the east side hotels.
    If you want to get to the Chief Mountain CDT start hitching from the east side is probably the best way.
    Are you planning to do the CDT this year? The permits might be all gone. You could try for a walk up permit at Apgar. Then take the free shuttle across the park. Hitch to the border and hit the Chief Mountain alternate.
    I have no idea how you can get from the airport to Apgar. Check the airport website. Make some phone calls.
    Good luck!
    Wayne

  7. #7
    Registered User backtrack213's Avatar
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    I'm planning on hiking through Glacier to the GDT in Canada. The plan I think now is get to Columbia Falls and hitch over to East Glacier to pick up a box I'll have sent there with my poles and other things that won't get on the plane with me. Theres a ranger station there that I will try my luck at a walk up permit to get to Waterton lake and continue north from there. If hitching doesn't go well I will take the shuttle from the west side to the east side.

  8. #8

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    When are you going? Any time soon? If so, best check on trail conditions. There was a lot of snow up there this winter and iit's been slow to melt.

    I went to Glacier on July 1 a few years ago on a low snow year and the trail to Waterton Park was not yet passible without technical gear. We had to start at Chief mountain instead. It may not be possible to hike to Waterton Park until August.
    The AT - It has it's ups and downs...

  9. #9
    Registered User Venchka's Avatar
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    Cool

    Glacier NP will decide when and where you can hike.
    This map shows Backcountry Campsites, opening dates (maybe-these are snow melt dependent), number of sites, etc. Learn how to read the map.
    https://www.nps.gov/glac/planyourvis...uide-2019a.pdf
    You can get a walk up permit at the Two Medicine Ranger Station. Not in East Glacier, MT.
    There are other advisories on the National park web pages. Like Going to Sun Road Might open this weekend. Or not. Goat Haunt may or may not be functional this year.
    Bring your PASSPORT!
    https://www.nps.gov/glac/planyourvis...CP_JUMP_850358
    Have fun!
    Wayne
    Eddie Valiant: "That lame-brain freeway idea could only be cooked up by a toon."
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  10. #10
    Registered User backtrack213's Avatar
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    I'm flying in June 27th. I will bring micro spikes if the rangers think it's necessary.

  11. #11
    Registered User Venchka's Avatar
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    While youíre waiting you might enjoy the Glacier NP backpacking videos at MyOwnFrontier on YouTube.
    Wayne

  12. #12
    Registered User Venchka's Avatar
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    Here is the best Backcountry camping information for Glacier.
    Bookmark this on your phone.
    The list updates daily.
    https://www.nps.gov/applications/gla...escgstatus.cfm
    Wayne

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by backtrack213 View Post
    I'm flying in June 27th. I will bring micro spikes if the rangers think it's necessary.
    The high country will be snowed in, possibly beyond safe travel. Contact GNP backcountry desk for current details.
    "It's fun to have fun, but you have to know how." ---Dr. Seuss

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by backtrack213 View Post
    I'm flying in June 27th. I will bring micro spikes if the rangers think it's necessary.
    Good luck, bring an ice axe too (and know how to self arrest) or they may not issue a permit. There are some pretty hairy snow chutes to cross.
    The AT - It has it's ups and downs...

  15. #15
    Registered User Venchka's Avatar
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    And unbridged streams are lethal. Drownings in Glacier are not uncommon.
    Be dry. Be warm. Be safe.
    Wayne

  16. #16
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    Kalispell Int AP is an outdoorsmans(hikers) AP. Chat it up on the flight and share a ride. That's how I met Snorkel and Frogger, on a flight from the east coast to MT to SOBO the CDT, all splitting a ride to East Glacier to obtain our permits.

  17. #17
    Garlic
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    My partner and I hitched a ride to Missoula, rented a car one-way to East Glacier, then rode NPS shuttle to Chief Mt.
    "Throw a loaf of bread and a pound of tea in an old sack and jump over the back fence." John Muir on expedition planning

  18. #18
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    Okay, so there is no bus (public or private) from the airport to Glacier. When you get to FCA (Glacier Airport) there are taxis. Getting to Glacier is about 30 miles or so. Hitching from the airport is easy but there are two towns that can hang you up a bit, Hungry Horse and Columbia Falls. When you first get to Glacier you will probably be in W. Glacier not in the park proper. W. Glacier is about a hundred yard strip that I would call a village. A lot of rafters and tourist hang here. There is a bar there (W. Glacier Bar) that EVERYONE drinks at (cause it's the only place). at the end of the village is the Flathead River. Cross that bridge and you are in the park proper. There is nothing really there except housing and offices (hidden from tourist view). The place you want to get to when you first get in the park is Apgar village (about a mile in). In Apgar is the ranger station (for permits), visitors center (where you catch the Glacier shuttles: free), campground (Yes, they have small hiker-biker area in the campground for only a few dollars). Neither Apgar or W. Glacier have showers or laundry (W. glacier use to have laundry but it was converted last year into a rental property). Warning, getting from Apgar to the east side is going to take half a day on the shuttle. Second warning, Browning is a hellhole slum.
    * Warning: I bite AND I do not play well with others! -hellkat-

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