“One of the most iconic runs in Glacier National Park, with easy access off of Logan Pass.
— Jake Bramante
Birding · Fall Colors · Lake · River/Creek · Views · Waterfall · Wildflowers · Wildlife
This breathtaking run is easily accessible from Logan Pass and, paired with the park's free shuttle, can be quite busy, especially in the peak summer months. The majority of this route hugs the lower contours of the towering peaks of the Garden Wall, running above and parallel to the Going-to-the-Sun-Road.
With spectacular views of the valleys below and panoramic vistas of endless summits coupled with the park's free shuttle, this point to point outing is popular for a reason.
Bring bear spray. Trail opens early to mid-July.
Need to Know
Always bring a warm hat and gloves as well as a rain jacket as travel through this area, even on a hot summer day, can change quickly. Make sure that you either purchase or rent bear spray. It can be rented in Apgar Village.
Trail is busy, so an early start helps you get in front of groups of hikers.
is the scenic apex of the Going-to-the-Sun Road, where the Highline Trail
starts from. Heading north, visitors will follow this trail as it traverses a small shelf along the cliff that was cut out for the road. There is a fixed cable to grab a hold of if needed, but this stretch can cause some anxiety for visitors who are sensitive to heights and exposure.
From there, the trail heads out into alpine meadows with occasional moments ducking into the trees. Continue north, past seasonal streams, avalanche chutes, wildflowers, and more, with ample opportunity to see wildlife along the way – the best that Glacier has to offer. The vistas to the west, across the Logan and McDonald Creek valleys and the beautiful summits of the Livingston Range are truly spectacular.
The most difficult section of the run is climbing up and over the saddle between Haystack Butte and Mt. Gould. From this upper vantage point, though, the views are truly great, making for an ideal spot to take a break for lunch or snacks. This point is also a good time to turn back for those looking for a shorter, out-and-back route.
To continue on the run, keep heading north below Mt Gould to the east, until you arrive at a junction with the Grinnell Glacier Overlook
on your right. If you have extra time and energy, this side trail is just shy of two miles, out-and-back, and provides stunning views of Grinnell Glacier
, over toward Many Glacier.
From the junction with the Grinnell Glacier Overlook
Trail, you are 0.7 miles from the historic Granite Park Chalet, which is another great place to catch your breath and refill your water bottle. Keep your eyes on alert in this area, as the pass and the meadows attract both deer and bears. From Granite Park Chalet, it is four miles of downhill travel through the burned forest to the Loop. The park’s free shuttle is a popular way to experience this route, as you can easily catch a ride back to your starting point.
If you prefer running more uphill than down, you may want start at the Loop in the cool of the morning and work your way up to Logan Pass
This content was created by Jake Bramante of Hike 734. Visit hike734.com
for more expert Glacier content and maps that help you decide which trail to run.
Flora & Fauna
Features many fantastic alpine flowers from the iconic beargrass to the small favorite of the grizzlies, the glacier lily. Alpine birds such as grosbeaks and white-crowned sparrows keep you company through most of the trip. Small mammals such as columbian ground squirrels, marmots, and pikas contrast with the mountain goats, bighorn sheep, deer, and occasional bear found along the trail.
History & Background
The Granite Park Chalet was built by the Great Northern Railroad and served as a stop for visitors traveling through the park on horseback.