Wildlife Sightings And Scenic Views Await You On The Glacier Lake Trail In Montana
If you’re an avid hiker in Montana, you know that half the fun of the experience is discovering new off-the-beaten-path trails that lead to beautiful destinations — and the Treasure State is full of them. And since there’s plenty of time left to get in a few more great hikes before winter weather sets in, we thought we’d highlight one of our favorite hidden gems, the Glacier Lake Trail near Red Lodge. This stunning terrain deserves more praise.
The Glacier Lake Trail sits near the Montana and Wyoming border, about 19 miles southwest of Red Lodge.
The lovely lake itself sits nestled in a deep glacial bowl high in the Beartooth Mountains.
To reach the trailhead, take a scenic drive down Highway 212 from Red Lodge for 10.9 miles and take a right onto FS-421.
From there, follow the road past the Limberpine campground to the end of the pavement. Take a left toward the trailhead, but take note — this is a rough ride with a lot of potholes best taken in a high clearance vehicle.
The trail is about 4.6 miles in length, and it's considered a moderate hike in terms of difficulty.
The trail can get quite steep at times, so if it's been a while since you've gone hiking, you may want to build up your endurance a bit first.
The trail is mostly a series of switchbacks as it rises about 1,300 feet in less than two miles.
From the ridge top, the trail drops about 300 feet in elevation to the lakeshore — and yes, this means you have an elevation gain on both the hike to the lake and the return back to the trailhead.
Glacier Lake is a popular spot for fishing in the summertime.
It's large in size, however, so you'll have no problem avoiding other people if that's your goal.
The trail is well marked, easy to follow, and leads to some seriously stunning views.
The lake is pristine, with water so clear you might get a glimpse of the fish swimming in it.
Summer is the best season to enjoy this beautiful trail, but you'll see hikers on the path well into October.
Once the snow hits the area, though, it tends to shut down for the winter for everyone's safety.
Have you ever heard of Glacier Lake?
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Glacier Lake, Montana 59868, USA