The following Destination Inspiration about Glacier National Park is courtesy of Shore Looks Nice.
Glacier National Park
There are few places that give the word "spectacular" a new meaning. Glacier National Park is one of these rare gems that everyone should visit at least once in their lifetime. You have to plan your trip accordingly, because it's only accessible for part of the year. It's well worth the extra planning to make it happen.
The West Glacier KOA
The newly remodeled West Glacier KOA was our favorite campground in all of 2016!
It's easy to see why we loved it so much. The staff is friendly, the million dollar views in all directions, it’s minutes from incredible hiking, and it has nice amenities.
You'll be happy to know that there's an electric fence around the campground so you can hike with your kids and dogs and not have to worry about grizzly bears.
One of the benefits of getting here early in camping season is that you won't have to worry about availability. In fact we love going to popular places in the off-season so we can enjoy great sites that normally wouldn't be available during peak camping season.
Having a larger 5th wheel (44 ft), it's really tough to find campgrounds in national parks. Just outside of these state and national parks there are usually fantastic campgrounds that accommodate the larger rigs. This one was easy to fit and navigate through.
Start here. This is a great spot to get any supplies and have your breath taken away. After watching a double rainbow over the beautiful lake with glaciers in the background, visit the local stores and get all the supplies you still need.
Get some bear spray at the local outfitter. We rented ours for a week at Glacier Outfitters. You may decide this spot is too beautiful to leave and rent a boat to head out for a closer look at a glacier.
This is one of the most popular hikes on the west side of Glacier and for good reason - 4.5 miles round trip and gorgeous views the entire way. Most of it is shaded forest so make sure you pick up bear spray. The trail is excellent. Well maintained, great length and top notch scenery.
It's easy to become lost in nature without actually getting lost here. Any turn of the trail could open up to a scenic vista or waterfall.
When you get to the lake take some time to relax, stretch, eat/drink, and soak in the views! You can continue down the trail to take you along the lake.
Make sure you spend some time relaxing around the fire. The stars are bright out here and it's a nice quiet place to enjoy some quality campfire time.
If you’re looking for a sweet campfire treat, we recommend putting a Rolo in the middle of a hot marshmallow. So good!
The Flathead River
The south boundary trail goes along the breathtaking Middle Fork of the Flathead River. We started at the beginning of the south boundary trail in West Glacier.
We saw a few people fly fishing and they were consistently catching fish. The color of the water was so incredible we ended up spending a lot of time just hanging out at different spots along the trail.
The Belton Bridge used to be the gateway to Glacier back in the early 1900's, but hasn't been used for vehicles for many years. It gives you a beautiful view from above the river.
We saw quite a few rafters zipping down the fast-flowing river. There are a number of outfitters that have everything you need to enjoy floating down the river, or even hitting some rapids.
Danielle hung out on the bridge with Ella while I watched this guy reel in his catch.
A must do is to head over and get some fresh huckleberry pie at Luna's Restaurant. You'll notice all around Glacier people are selling huckleberry items like the huckleberry jam we bought. They pick and make it all locally and it tastes incredible. It's a beautiful drive to Luna's on the other side of the park and gives you a reason to explore a different area.
Have you ever worked up such an appetite from hiking that you tried to eat the menu while waiting for your food? The food was worth the wait but the big draw here is the Fresh Huckleberry Pie. Make sure you stop in at the World's Largest Purple Spoon next door.
Biking Sun Road
This was an adventure I highly recommend to anyone who wants to push themselves in some of the best scenery in the world.
There's a bit of timing involved, the road is only open certain months of the year due to snow/avalanches being cleared out. There are other times where cars aren't yet allowed but bikes are, this is when you can have the entire road to yourself and pedal on up the mountain.
It's easy to be grateful and enjoy life when you're in such an incredible place.
It's a pretty steep upgrade so make sure you're in shape or have been doing a little training before storming this challenge.
Once you get up higher you can almost look straight down at the road that you started on down below.
What a scenic place to rest for a minute.
How incredible to know that you're about to fly down this mountain road with no cars and end up down there somewhere. WOOHOOOO!
Meeting a True Road Warrior
David was at the campground at the same time as us. We both had a Heartland Road Warrior so we started chatting about our units and ended up hitting it off.
It turns out he and his wife are a big inspiration! He has kidney failure and is on dialysis; rather than letting the situation take charge, they used it as motivation to see the country.His wife got certified to do dialysis and as they wait most likely for a few years for a transplant, they're traveling and seeing the sights they always wanted to.
See more of David's story here.
Lake McDonald Lodge
If you're looking for extreme scenery without having to hike or even head out into nature the Lake McDonald Lodge is the place for you! The drive to get there is exceptional.
Once you're there and have explored the lodge, it's a great place to venture outdoors and have a picnic.
You can rent a boat and head out to explore this gorgeous lake.
Or just sit back and view the reflection of the mountains on the water. It doesn't get much more scenic than this...
Glacier National Park is huge and you probably need an entire camping season here to really scratch the surface on what it has to offer. Let us know what should be added to the list of things to do in and around Glacier National Park.