Glacier-Waterton National Park

Camping and Lodging
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Glacier National Park
Glacier National Park (Heath Korvola/Photodisc/Getty)

Camping

Ten campgrounds provide just under 1,000 sites. All campgrounds are operated on a "first-come, first-served" basis. Reservations are not accepted. Campgrounds often fill before noon in July and August; plan to arrive early. Quartz Creek and Logging Creek are shown as closed on old maps; this is no longer the case.

Several styles of camping await the visitor. There are eight campgrounds accessible by paved road?Apgar, Avalanche Creek, Fish Creek, Many Glacier, Rising Sun, St. Mary, Two Medicine, and Sprague Creek. Trailer space is provided at all but Sprague Creek, which is closed to towed vehicles. Fireplaces, tables, washrooms, and cold running water are offered at all of these campgrounds, but utility connections are not provided.

To get closer to nature, consider camping off a graveled road where only fireplaces, tables, and pit toilets are provided. This style of camping can be found at Cut Bank, Kintla Lake, and Quartz Creek. The roads to these areas are narrow and rough so inquire at a ranger station before driving into the campground with a trailer or camper. Camp in designated campgrounds only.

Backcountry use permits are required for backcountry camping.

To make a campground reservation, call 1-800-365-CAMP (2267).

Reservation Hours of Operation

Daily: 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Eastern Time
7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Pacific Time
Reservation Center CLOSED Christmas and New Year's Day.

If you are calling from outside the U.S. or Canada, please dial 301-722-1257. The TDD number for the hearing-impaired is 888-530-9796.

The National Park Reservation Service (NPRS) and the National Park Service (NPS) have implemented a reservation window to make booking your camping reservations more convenient. On the 15th of each month, campers will have access to an entire month of available start dates?up to three months in advance (see schedule below)?except Katmai National Park. You may book reservations as late as one day prior to arrival, subject to availability.

Kintla Lake Campground

Kintla Lake Campground is located at the foot of Kintla Lake in the northwest corner of the park and is reached via primitive dirt roads. Large RVs and trailers are not recommended.

The campground is usually open from late May through early September. Kintla Lake has 13 sites, all of which will accommodate vehicles or vehicle assemblies up to 18 feet. There are no flush toilets or disposal station. Boat access to Kintla Lake is nearby. Power boats are not allowed. Primitive camping is available before and after dates listed, as long as road conditions permit.

Bowman Lake Campground

Bowman Lake Campground is located at the foot of Bowman Lake in the northwest corner of the park and is reached via primitive dirt roads. Large RV's and trailers are not recommended.

The campground is usually open from mid-May through early September. Bowman Lake has 48 sites suitable for tents or RVs. Thirty of those sites will accommodate vehicles or vehicle assemblies up to 22 feet. There are no flush toilets or disposal station. Boat access to Bowman Lake is nearby. Primitive camping is available before and after dates listed, as long as road conditions permit.

Many Glacier Campground

Many Glacier Campground is located near Swiftcurrent Lake in the Many Glacier Valley. Full visitor facilities are located within easy walking distance at Swiftcurrent Motor Inn and one mile east at the Many Glacier Hotel.

The campground is usually open from late May through mid-September. Many Glacier has 110 sites suitable for tents or RVs. Thirteen of those sites will accommodate vehicles or vehicle assemblies up to 35 feet. The campground has flush toilets and a disposal station. Boat access to Swiftcurrent Lake is nearby.

St. Mary Campground

St. Mary Campground is located near the foot of St. Mary Lake. Full visitor facilities are located a short distance away in the town of St. Mary, just outside the park.

The campground is usually open from late May through early September. St. Mary has 156 sites suitable for tents or RVs. Ninety of those sites will accommodate vehicles or vehicle assemblies up to 35 feet. The campground has flush toilets and a disposal station. Primitive camping is available through the fall, winter, and spring.

Rising Sun Campground

Rising Sun Campground is located on St. Mary Lake six miles west of the town of St. Mary.

Full visitor facilities are located within easy walking distance at the Rising Sun Motor Inn. The campground is usually open from early June through mid-September. Rising Sun has 84 sites suitable for tents or RVs. Five of those sites will accommodate vehicles or vehicle assemblies up to 30 feet. The campground has flush toilets and a disposal station. Boat access to St. Mary Lake is nearby.

Avalanche Campground

Avalanche Campground is located four miles north of Lake McDonald in a mature cedar/hemlock forest. Gas, groceries, and restaurants are approximately six miles south at Lake McDonald Lodge. The Avalanche Lake trailhead located nearby provides access to one of the most popular hikes on the west side of the park.

This campground usually fills very early each day, July through August. The campground is usually open from early June through late August. Avalanche has 87 sites suitable for tents or RVs. Fifty of those sites will accommodate vehicles or vehicle assemblies up to 26 feet. The campground has flush toilets and a disposal station.

Sprague Creek Campground

Sprague Creek Campground is located on Lake McDonald eight miles north of Apgar. Full visitor facilities are located one mile north at Lake McDonald Lodge.

The campground is usually open from early June through early October. Sprague Creek has 25 sites. No towed units are allowed. The campground has flush toilets.

Fish Creek Campground

Fish Creek Campground is located near the foot of Lake McDonald. Full visitor facilities are located two miles away at Apgar.

The campground is usually open from late May through early September. Fish Creek has 180 sites suitable for tents or RVs. Eighty of those sites will accommodate vehicles or vehicle assemblies up to 26 feet. The campground has flush toilets and a disposal station. Boat access to Lake McDonald is at Apgar.

Apgar Campground

Apgar Campground is located near the foot of Lake McDonald. Full visitor facilities are located within easy walking distance.

The campground is usually open from mid-May through mid-October. Apgar has 196 sites suitable for tents or RVs. Eight of those sites will accommodate vehicles or vehicle assemblies up to 35 feet. The campground has flush toilets and a disposal station. Boat access to Lake McDonald is nearby. Primitive camping is available through the fall, winter, and spring.

Two Medicine Campground

Two Medicine Campground is located near the foot of Two Medicine Lake.

Groceries and gifts are available a short distance away at the campstore. Boat trips are offered several times a day from the boat dock. The campground is usually open from late May through early September. Two Medicine has 99 sites suitable for tents or RVs. Thirteen of those sites will accommodate vehicles or vehicle assemblies up to 32 feet. The campground has flush toilets and a disposal station. Boat access to Two Medicine Lake is nearby. Primitive camping is available before and after the dates listed as long as road conditions permit.

Lodging

A range of lodges and inns located throughout Glacier National Park are available. Visitors may chose from rooms in historic grand hotels dating back to the early 1900s, modern motel type accommodations, or rustic cabins.

The Village Inn Motel, Lake McDonald Lodge, Rising Sun Motor Inn, Swiftcurrent Motor Inn, and the Many Glacier Hotel are operated by Glacier Park, Inc. These are all fine facilities with distinct personalties. For reservations and information, contact Glacier Park, Inc. , P.O. Box 2025, Columbia Falls, Montana 59912; phone: 406-892-2525.

For reservations at the Apgar Village Lodge, contact them Apgar Village Lodge, P.O. Box 410, West Glacier, Montana 59936; phone: 406-888-5484.

The historic Granite Park and Sperry chalets are wonderful trail-only-accessible lodges in the Glacier backcountry. Contact Sperry Chalet for more; phone: 888-345-2696.

Lodging in Waterton Lakes National Park

Lodging is available at Kilmorey Lodge (phone: 403-859-2334) and Aspen Village Inn (phone: 403-859-2252). Kilmorey remains open in the winter for winter-sport trippers.

Outside the Park
Izaak Walton Inn (phone: 406-888-5700) is located right on the park's border in Essex, Montana. The property was built as a retreat for the employees of the Great Northern Railway. Nowadays it's a cross-country ski destination for anybody. Amtrak stops practically at their doorstep.

The Resort at Glacier (phone: 888-778-6279) is a big 117-room resort at the east entrance of the park in St. Mary. Standing as the gateway to the park's legendary Going-to-the-Sun Road, the 1930s lodge-style resort has modern amenities as well as unrivaled views of the park.


Published: 29 Apr 2002 | Last Updated: 15 Sep 2010
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication

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