Glacier National Park, Montana
Check out our other hiking adventure: Bryce, Zion, Escalante this October 21-26, 2017.
Climate Hike Glacier National Park departures are limited to 30 participants. Climate Hike Glacier is a charitable hiking challenge that explores the wildest national park in the United States, and the ecosystem most threatened by environmental degradation and climate change. By fundraising and participating in Climate Hike, you are raising awareness of our generation's greatest challenge - and seeing first-hand just what is at stake.
From the first moment when we enter Glacier National Park, you will see that Climate Hike is more than a hiking trip — it's an inspiring journey with a small group of like-minded people who are united by their passion for the environment, sustainable transportation, renewable energy, and preserving our planet for generations to come.
On Climate Hike Glacier, you'll spend four days hiking the iconic trails on the 'Crown of the Continent'. You'll see majestic 500-year old cedar forests under threat of wildfires and glaciers in fast retreat. Over four days of hiking, you'll cover 40+ miles across the park — traversing aretes and high alpine mountain passes and glacier lakes and waterfalls. Professional Glacier Guides will accompany us on each day to teach us about Glacier's unique ecosystem, so you can bring this knowledge home to your community.
Climate Ride (the organization) takes care of all the details, so you can focus on fundraising, training, and then trekking 6-15 miles per day along carefully planned routes. Each day the group will be divided into smaller hiking groups led by a knowledgeable and friendly Glacier Guide. Our group hiking pace is at a minimum of 2-3 miles per hour and we have medium and long route options, designed for hikers who are in good health and regularly hike. You should be comfortable hiking a minimum of 8 miles a day and be able to ascend 1,500 feet in a normal day.
It's meant to be challenging yet doable, and you have all day to hike and learn. Our support team is always nearby to assist you, keep you happy and healthy, and make your trek worry-free and memorable. The final day of the trip includes a beautiful 1/2 day raft trip along the Class II-III section (moderate) of the Flathead River.
All breakfasts, dinners, packed lunches, snacks, camping, guiding, and shuttles are included. Participants must bring their own tent, sleeping bag, and pad or can rent this equipment in advance through Glacier Guides. Hikers will carry a daypack with snacks, water, and personal items. Our camp staff handles luggage and food.
Climate Hikers will have access to our superb personal fundraising software and the full support of our team. Participants may select their beneficiaries from our list of more than 100 extraordinary non-profit organizations.
You can learn more about what's included on the FAQ page.
For more information on each day's hiking, please read on.
|Start Location:||West Glacier, MT|
|End Location:||West Glacier, MT|
|Fundraising Commitment:||$3,000 minimum|
|Trip Length:||5 days|
|Activity:||4 days hiking + 1/2 day whitewater rafting|
|Total Mileage:||35 to 50, with multiple daily mileage options|
|Average Daily Mileage:||11|
|Accommodations:||Camping (hotel options available)|
|Maximum Group Size:||30 people|
|Other Trip Notes:|
|$500 to be raised by:||TBA|
|$1000 to be raised by:||TBA|
|$2800 to be raised by:||TBA|
Day 1 – 6 or 10 miles
Hikers will depart West Glacier, MT and enter Glacier National Park. After traveling along the Going-to-the-Sun Road, we begin with a warm up hike to get our bodies moving and to start to meet the rest of our group.
This evening, we'll meet at our first camp in Apgar Village along the shore of Lake McDonald to socialize, dine and tuck in for the night under the towering lodgepole pine trees.
Day 2 – 15 miles
Today begins with an early shuttle up the Going-to-the-Sun Road to Logan Pass at nearly 7000 feet. Our skilled Glacier Guides will lead us on an all-day hike from the west side of the Continental Divide to the east side at Many Glacier Valley. We're entering the country of mountain goats, big horn sheep, wolverines, grizzly and black bears. Our epic day will include forests, lakes, aretes, stunning vistas and finally, an exhilarating descent into Many Glacier.
This evening, we'll soak our feet in mountain streams before shuttling to our camp in St. Mary. (Hot showers available.)
Day 3 – 12 miles
After a shuttle back to the Many Glacier Valley, we'll begin our exploration of Grinnell Glacier, an iconic receding glacier hanging in the valley. This out and back hike will challenge and delight, and our Glacier Guides will show us firsthand the effects of climate change in the park.
Tonight we return to our camp in St. Mary. (Hot showers available.)
Day 4 – 12 or 5 miles
Today brings a new challenge in the Two Medicine Valley, a spectacular and less visited part of Glacier National Park. Two Medicine Valley is particularly special to the Blackfeet Nation, whose reservation borders the eastern side of Glacier National Park. We'll learn about Blackfeet history as we begin our last hike in this valley. You will have the option of hikes today. The longer option is a gentle hike to a beautiful alpine lake or waterfall, while the shorter option is a steep climb up to an incredible vantage point with panoramic views.
Tonight we shuttle to our camp in the Two Medicine area.
Our final morning is time to rest our feet and return to West Glacier by raft. With the Glacier Guides, we'll travel by raft along the Middle Fork of the Flathead, viewing an ecosystem shaped by fire and rocks etched with the story of geologic time.
After lunch we'll say goodbye and provide transport back to Kalispell or Whitefish.
Climate Hike Glacier is a 4-night, 5-day camping trip in Glacier National Park. Imagine falling asleep under the stars, beneath the trees, in your own tent after an amazing day of hiking. It's the best! In camp, we take care of all the details so you're free to relax and connect with other Climate Hikers.
Amenities in camp include beautiful scenery, hot showers (3 of the 4 nights - where there's no shower, we have excellent swimming opportunities), clean restrooms, electricity, potable water and a great spot to set up your tent.
We camp at nearby 'frontcountry' campgrounds where our camp chefs can prepare delicious, healthy, warm meals for the group. Think hot, filling breakfasts with coffee and tea, and tasty dinners with delicious desserts. Each morning you will pack snacks and a nourishing lunch to bring on the trail. Our morning snack table will have items to keep you energized all day while hiking. We reduce waste by using compostable items for our picnics and pack lunches, and for dinner, we use real plates & cutlery. The only thing we ask is that you help us by washing your own dishes – a small price to pay!
Glacier is huge, encompassing more than 1 million acres. In order to reach our trailheads, there will typically be up to an hour of shuttling each direction, each day. Shuttles are a great opportunity to see the full expanse of the park while learning from our Glacier Guides and connecting with your group.
On Climate Hike Glacier, camp becomes a dynamic community. Hiking in Glacier doesn't get better than on Climate Hike.
The following details are provided to help you plan for your travel to and from Climate Hike Glacier.
The Trip Start
Climate Hike Glacier begins in West Glacier, MT at 8am. Please arrive in West Glacier with your luggage and ready to hike. We recommend you arrive in northwest Montana at least one day before the departure of your trip.
Getting to West Glacier
PLANE: The closest airport is in Kalispell, Montana (airport code: FCA). The airport is a 20-minute drive to Whitefish or a 40-minute drive to West Glacier. Delta, United, Allegiant and Alaska/Horizon are the main carriers. There are several rental car companies at or near the airport. Reservations are highly advised. We recommend Dollar Rent A Car (800-800-3665), Avis (800-331-1212), or Budget (800-527-0700). Car rentals are also available in West Glacier. For a shuttle to and from the airport to West Glacier or Whitefish you may contact Glacier Taxi (406-250-3603). To West Glacier, the cost is approximately $50-55. To Whitefish, the cost is approximately $32. Please call for exact rates and to reserve your taxi.
TRAIN: Amtrak has service from Seattle and Chicago to the Whitefish station or to West Glacier/Belton station (where the trip starts). NOTE: Amtrak can be delayed several hours to days. There is no checked baggage service at the West Glacier/Belton stop.
CAR: You may park your vehicle at the trip start while you are on Climate Hike. There is ample shaded and safe parking. Approximate driving times to West Glacier:
Whitefish, MT – 40 minutes
Missoula, MT - 3 hours
Calgary, Alberta - 5 hours
Spokane, WA – 5 hours
After the Hike in West Glacier
Climate Hike will end back in West Glacier at approximately 1pm on the final day. There, we'll celebrate the end of the hike with a picnic lunch and group photo, before collecting our luggage/gear and departing. We recommend not making flight arrangements from the Kalispell Airport (FCA) before 4pm.