My first trip to Glacier National Park was in 2006 when I went hiking with a buddy. It was an amazing trip, the park is truly one of the gems of the National Park Service. I went back recently for another trip, and the park was just as beautiful as I remembered, and in many ways the second trip exceeded the first. Spring is when I typically start to plan for summer hiking trips, with a baby due this summer I don’t see that happening, but I still thought I would pass on a review of one of the trail guides I found very helpful: Glacier Day Hikes Alan by Leftridge.
I tend to collect trail guides. When I start planning a trip I start perusing the offerings at Amazon trying to find the best guide. Glacier Day Hikes by Alan Leftridge was the one that worked best for me. Leftridge organizes the hikes by region on a map of Glacier Park and then again by difficulty. My trips to Glacier have both been early in the season – the park isn’t as crowded in June and you have a great chance of seeing more animals if the snow-pack is still large, but you have to be flexible in selecting trails due to trail conditions. This book allowed us to find trails quickly and adapt sometimes at the trail head.
A few of my favorite Glacier Day Hikes:
Logging Lake Trail: This is a great trail if you want a full-day of hiking and a trail that is not generally crowded. The trail is 8.8 miles round trip and classified as Moderate. Early in the season, expect several muddy trail sections and we found quite a bit of bear evidence on the trail, but overall a peaceful and a great hike.
Fish Lake Trail: This trail shares the trail-head with Snyder Lake Trail and is a 6 mile hike. The initial hike out of the Lake McDonald Lodge area is on the steep side in places, but the trail is well-traveled and in good condition. When the Fish Lake Trail separates, the trail becomes easier and is a nice hike up to the lake.
Running Eagle Falls: This is a “must-see” and is easy. It is only 0.3 miles round trip, but the view is worth the quick stroll. You can’t really call this a day hike, but it is worth the few minutes it takes to walk from the parking lot.
Appekunny Falls: A Moderate hike, but worth it. The distance is only 2.0 miles but it does have a rock scramble the last 0.5 miles of the trail. If you go early in the season, expect snow at the base of the falls.
This trail guide – Glacier Day Hikes by Alan Leftridge – is one I would highly recommend. Mine is battle-scarred and filled with notes. When I hike a trail, I note in the trail guide the date I hiked it and notes about the trail. It makes a fun, quick diary, and makes it easier to recommend trails to friends or if you go back for a second hike.
To order from Amazon: Glacier Day Hikes by Alan Leftridge
A quick thank you note if your order through the link above, it helps us support this blog.