Date: July 2014
Destination: Glacier National Park
Activity: Day hike and picnic
The beautiful Western Montana country boasts the majestic landscape of Glacier National Park. This summer on our RV trip we decided to make our first official “glamping” spot at the base of GNP in the town of Polson, Montana. Just about an hour and fifteen minutes from the western entrance of the park. Polson is the home of Flathead lake.
The area of Polson is absolutely beautiful. Trent had done a little research before we headed so far north and made a reservation for us at Polson Resort RV park. This upscale RV park is only open for newer model A class RV’s but it does back up to the local KOA. Since the owner knew we would be arriving with six kids he booked our slot right next to the KOA so the kids would have easy access to the pool, put put golf, and gift shop. We had the best of both worlds. This park was very beautiful with some amazing RV’s and like most of our experiences in the RV world we stuck out like a sore thumb since we were under the average age of 65 and heaven forbid we brought kids!!!
Our main goal was to visit Glacier National Park so we scheduled our day with a 5:30am wake up and we were out the door by 6:30. Another perk of being in an RV is that we didn’t have to try and find a place to feed the kids! I already had breakfast made so we warmed up our pancakes and we were out the door. Our drive to GNP was beautiful but a little windy so I suggest making sure any young kids with motion sickness problems have something for it. Since we have two in our family we had a patch for them and they were fine all day.
Entering the park there is a $25 entrance fee which is pretty reasonable since many parks will charge by the person and not just the vehicle. Plus this pass was good for seven days so had we decided to come back we would have just had to pay the one time fee.
At first it was hard to see much. The trees were very clustered on the right and the lake on the left made our kids antsy to find wildlife. Unlike Yellowstone there isn’t a lot of wildlife (or maybe we were just there at the wrong time of year or at Yellowstone at the right time). Also Yellowstone has many more natural attractions but that could also be because it is much larger than Glacier. However, there was still beauty to be seen we just had to drive a little farther in.
The entire drive through GNP is 50 miles. The drive is very windy and had a few switch backs, cliffs, and wet roads. In July the weather was a chilly 47 degrees and very wet on the western side, however when we got past Logan Visitor Center it warmed up quite nicely and we had a picturesque picnic in Rising Sun Campground right off of Going to the Sun Road.
Our favorite sites were Heavens Peak, the Weeping Wall and the Haystack Waterfall. The kids especially loved getting up to 6500 feet and at some parts being in the clouds. There was even snow and for Texans that is always a welcome site.
We had a great day and we were glad we made it to the park early before the crowds and the cars packed every stop off on the side of the road. Since it is a smaller park with less to see than Yellowstone it does seem to feel more crowded. However since we got over to the Rising Sun picnic area before the lunch crowds made it to the eastern side of the park, we almost had the area to ourselves and that gave the kids plenty of time to fool around. That is my best advice for a great day at Glacier….get there early!
Goodluck and Safe and Happy Travels!!!