Who needs National Parks…?

October 3rd, 2013 by teresa

canyon logo
Well, we do!  Glacier National Park is the biggest attraction that draws our guests to our area and we think its certainly worth travelling from the four corners of the world to experience.

However, there is much. much more to experience in our backyard than Glacier National Park, and the silver lining of the current park closure, due to government shutdown, is that we can draw the attention of our guests to the supporting cast whilst the main star has temporarily left the stage.

For guests craving spectacular vistas you can take a trip up to Desert Mountain in the Flathead National Forest and view the peaks of Glacier National Park from a different perspective.  Whilst you are in the park you are in the midst of this snowcapped majesty, and we all know how hard it is to see the wood for the trees sometimes.  Bike, hike or drive this trail for breathtaking views of peaks and valleys right up to the US/Canada border and beyond.

Or, stay on the flat (in comparison), and enjoy the still water and tall pines around Hungry Horse Reservoir.  Great Northern peak (pictured above) dominates the views on this drive right around the reservoir.  Great for wildlife viewing, a spot of fishing or stopping off for a picnic at one of the many sites you’ll pass.  The Hungry Horse Dam in itself is well worth the visit and full of the history of the area (spot the huge ball on your drive through Hungry Horse used for clearing trees during the construction).

Polebridge Bakery tingles your tastebuds and takes you back in time to the days of the mercantile (its compulsory to bring us back some of their bear claws!).  The drive up offers yet another perspective of park peaks.  Jewel Basin, in the opposite direction, offers hiking options and scenery away from the park.

Take our word for it, there are outstanding vistas and hiking everywhere you turn.

Feel like you’re missing out on that famous scenic drive? Take a drive around 27 mile long Flathead Lake instead, stopping at art galleries in Bigfork, the Miracle of America museum in Polson and various microbreweries for a great day out.  The sunsets over the lake are beyond spectacular.

Looking for some history and culture?  Check out the Conrad Mansion for a glimpse into days gone by, and don’t forget our lodge!  Built originally to greet visitors to the park there are more than 100 years of history in those solid log beams!

Don’t be sad because the park is closed, be glad because you get to experience all the hidden gems that most visitors don’t find the time for.

Book your stay today and fall for all the Flathead Valley has to offer.

Whatever Washington is up to, WE can promise you you will not be disappointed!

Fabulous Fall in the Flathead Valley

September 22nd, 2013 by teresa

Have you had the opportunity yet to visit with us in the Fall?  We think its just the best time of year in our little corner of Northwest Montana.  Beautiful blue skies and warm temperatures continue into September and October and fewer crowds mean more space to enjoy the Fall colors and crisp mountain air.

The lodge stays open year round providing full four-season facilities for our guests whether dropping by for a coffee by the fireplace, enjoying a fabulous Fall vacation, or staying longer term in one of our cabins throughout the winter.

This year, you can access Logan’s Peak from the West Side of Glacier National Park right into October.  Park facilities close down for the season by September so this means you get no lines and very little traffic.  Its a totally different experience, and one not to be missed!  The lakes are so still and offer perfect looking-glass reflections of Montana’s ‘big sky’ and the tamaracks turning shades of gold.

And there’s plenty more to see and do…..

Traditional Fall events in the Flathead Valley includes the Le Grizz Ultramarathon (a 50 mile footrace around the Hungry Horse Reservoir), the Great Northwest Oktoberfest (two weekends of German beer, food music and fun) and there’s always pumpkin picking at the pumpkin patch along with indoor entertainment at The Zone Family Fun Center for our younger guests (or the young at heart!).

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Glacier National Park Retreat

September 13th, 2013 by teresa

Individual log cabins in a forest setting available to rent October – April. Property backs onto the Flathead National Forest with opportunities for hiking, fishing, snowshoeing, cross country skiing and snowmobiling. Facility is plowed throughout the winter months and is conveniently located off US Highway 2. 10 mins to Columbia Falls, 10mins to the West Entrance of Glacier National Park.

Studio size through to two bed units with private decks available. Cabins are fully furnished with private bathrooms, fully-equipped kitchens, satellite tv and wireless internet connection. Even linen service and housekeeping are available on request.

All that’s missing is you ! Come home to your Winter mountain retreat.

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Glacier National Park Winter Lodging

September 6th, 2013 by teresa

Collage_FotoFlexer_PhotoLooking for a winter mountain retreat?  Relocating and need lodging while you search for your perfect home? Our cabins are available for long-term rental on a monthly basis from October 1st through April 30th for prices starting at $500 including utilities.  All cabin types available from one bed unit cabins with private bath, refrigerator and microwave through to our new studio cabins with full sized, fully equipped kitchen to our largest, two bedroom cabins.  Whatever your needs, you can rest assured that we have a cabin available at rates to suit. Linen and laundry are available at extra cost, our facility is plowed through the snow season and we are located right on Highway 2 for easy access.  Don’t forget, our backyard is the Flathead National Forest with groomed trails that provide awesome opportunities for snow shoes, xc ski and snowmobiling.

Contact us on 877-387-4420 to get up-to-date info on rates and availability.

 

Fall in Glacier National Park

September 5th, 2013 by teresa

Fall_83Operating hours for many visitor services including campgrounds, concessions, boat inspections, and backcountry permits in Glacier National Park will begin to change after Labor Day weekend.

Rehabilitation work on the Going-to-the-Sun Road continues through the fall season. Paving between Avalanche Creek and Logan Creek has been completed. Minor delays will continue in this area to accommodate striping, wheelstop and rumble strip installation, signing, rock placement, and other road work. Rehabilitation work on the east-side between Rising Sun and Siyeh Bend will continues with 20-minute maximum day-time delays. Night closures continue in this area after 9 p.m., Monday through Thursday. Sun Point is closed to the public and being utilized as a staging area for rehabilitation activities.

To allow accelerated fall season rehabilitation on the Going-to-the-Sun Road, the last day to access Logan Pass by vehicle on the east side will be Sunday, September 22. Vehicle traffic will be restricted on the east side near the St. Mary Campground beginning Monday, September 23. Vehicle access to Logan Pass will be available from the west side of the park through Sunday, October 20, weather permitting.

Campground operating dates are as follows:

Campground Closing Dates (Through night of dates listed) Primitive Camping Operating Dates    (No water available)
Apgar October 13 Primitive camping in picnic area October 14-31, and April 1-May 2: $10 per night, November 1-March 31: Free with valid entrance pass
Avalanche September 2 No primitive camping
Bowman Lake September  6 Primitive camping September 7- October  31 (weather dependent) $10 per night  November 1 through closure: Free with valid entrance pass
Cut Bank September  8 Operated in primitive status all season, closes Noon September 9
Fish Creek September  1 National Recreation Reservation System Campground, no primitive camping
Kintla Lake September 6 Primitive camping September 7- October 31:(weather dependent) $10 per night November 1 through  closure: Free with valid entrance pass
Logging Creek September  22 Operated in primitive status all season, closes Noon September 23
Many Glacier September 22 Primitive camping September 23 -29 (weather dependent) $10 per night. Closes Noon September 30
Quartz Creek October 30 Operated in primitive status all season, closes Noon October 31
Rising Sun September 2 No primitive camping
Sprague Creek September 2 No primitive camping
St. Mary September 8 June 1-September 1: National Recreation Reservation System $23 per nightSeptember 2-8: $20 per night

Primitive camping September 9-October 31: $10 per night

November 1-March 31: Free with valid entrance pass

Two Medicine September 8 No primitive camping

 

Campgrounds in primitive status have pit toilets available, no potable or drinking water, limited number of sites, and fees are reduced to $10 per night. Visitors are encouraged to plan ahead and reminded that any water taken from streams or lakes requires treatment before use. Current campground status is available athttp://home.nps.gov/applications/glac/cgstatus/cgstatus.cfm.

Hours of operation for the Apgar Back-Country Permit Office will change after Labor Day.  From Labor Day through September 30, the office will be open 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.  During October hours will be 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.  Back-country permits will be issued until 30 minutes prior to closing.

Hours of operation to conduct boat inspections and receive permits will also change this fall:

West-Side Boat Inspections
September 8 – September 30October 1 – October 31

November 1 – May 1

7:00am to 4:30pm, Apgar Back-Country Office8:00am to 4:00pm, Apgar Back-Country Office

Monday-Friday, Head-quarters Office

Weekends Apgar Visitor Center

East-Side Boat Inspections
September 1 – September 14 (St.Mary)September 1-September 21 (Two Medicine and Many Glacier)

September 14/22 – late May

8:00am to 4:30pm8:00 am to 4:30 pm

8:00am to 4:00pm, expect delays & call ahead if you can estimate your arrival time, 888-7800

Many concessioner services will begin closing mid-September including lodging, transportation, food service, retail shops, and boat rentals:

Belton Chalets, Inc.

(1-888-345-2649 or www.sperrychalet.com orwww.graniteparkchalet.com) Backcountry Chalets:

Location Closing
Granite Park Chalet* September 9 (after breakfast)
Sperry Chalet** September 9 (after breakfast)

*The historic Granite Park Chalet is available for overnight use as a rustic hiker shelter.

**Services at the historic Sperry Chalet include traditional overnight accommodations and food service for overnight guests and day hikers with meal reservations.

Glacier Park Boat Company (406-257-2426 orwww.glacierparkboats.com) Boat tours and rentals:

Location Closing
Apgar (rentals only) September 2
Lake McDonald September 22
Many Glacier September 15
Rising Sun (tours only) September 2
Two Medicine September 8

Glacier Park, Inc. (GPI) (Central reservations:  406-892-2525 orwww.glacierparkinc.com) Front country lodging, food and beverage services, retail, tour and transportation services:

Location Closing
Lake McDonald Lodge & Camp Store September 29 (after breakfast)
Jammer Joe’s Restaurant September 2 (after dinner)
Many Glacier Hotel September 22 (after breakfast)
Rising Sun Motor Inn & Camp Store September 15 (after breakfast)
Swiftcurrent Motor Inn September 16 (after breakfast)
Swiftcurrent Campstore September 16 (closes at noon)
Two Medicine Camp Store September 8 (open all day)
Village Inn September 16 (after check-out)
Red Bus Tours Tours operate the same dates as the hotels.
Hiker Shuttle September 2
East-Side Shuttle September 22

Sun Tours (1-800-786-9220 or 406-226-9220 orwww.glaciersuntours.com) Road-based tours highlighting Blackfeet culture and history:

Location Closing
Various Locations October 15

 

Swan Mountain Outfitters (1-877-888-5557 orwww.swanmountainoutfitters.com/glacier) Horseback rides:

Location Closing
Apgar September 2
Lake McDonald September 29
Many Glacier September 15

 

Waterton Inter-Nation Shoreline Cruises, LTD (403-859-2362 orwww.watertoncruise.com) Waterton Lake boat tours:

Location Closing
Goat Haunt Landing September 22

 

Ranger-led activities such as guided hikes and evening programs are offered throughout September. View the ranger-led activity schedule on the park’s website athttp://home.nps.gov/applications/glac/inforequest/inforequest3.cfm.

Autumn visitors to Glacier National Park will find less crowds, cooler temperatures, and changing vegetation colors. Area residents and visitors are reminded that the park is open year-round and park recreational opportunities can be found during all seasons.

For additional park information, visit the park’s websitewww.nps.gov/glac or call park headquarters at 406-888-7800.

 

Fall facilities in Glacier National Park

August 17th, 2013 by teresa

Fall_47Whilst shortening days and cooler temperatures see many of the facilities in and around Glacier National Park beginning to close for the season, there is still plenty to do and see.  The Historic Tamarack Lodge and Cabins stays open year round to enable visitors to our area to enjoy Glacier National Park through all four seasons.  Each season has its own particular beauty and Fall is no different.  Low water leads to mirror-like lakes reflecting the beautiful colors of the changing foliage creating fantastic opportunities for photographers.

Cooler, autumnal temperatures and fewer visitors make for excellent hiking and biking on the trails in and around Glacier and the Hungry Horse Reservoir, and hunters can find opportunities with local outfitters throughout the season.

Our Espresso Bar and Gift Shop will stay open, offering visitors and passers-by the opportunity to enjoy the history of the lodge.  Relax in the Great Room and enjoy a latte or cappuchino while you warm your toes by the fire.  Catch up on emails with our free wifi, or browse our Gift Shop for that perfect treasure to remind you of your stay.

We think Fall is the best time to visit the mountains of Glacier Country and we look forward to welcoming you to your Fall home away from home.

Book your stay today and take advantage of our low seasonal rates (our cabins are also available for long term rental from October-April).


 

Glacier National Park Limited Edition Print

August 12th, 2013 by teresa

 

Glacier National Park Art by Colt Idol

Support the Gateway to Glacier Trail by purchasing a giclee print via Freedom Bank, Columbia Falls, MT

Now is Your Chance to Have Your Own Copy of an Amazing Piece of Art by a Local Artist While Supporting a Great Cause!  

36” x 24” Giclée Print of “Discover Freedom”

Premium quality print in museum wrap format, limited to 200 copies – $350

$100 of the purchase price counts as a tax-deductible contribution to Glacier Gateway Trail 501(c)(3)

** Preorders will receive Colt Idol’s original signature on the canvas print and Colt will also embellish the print with original oil paint at the August 22, 2013 unveiling celebration at Freedom Bank**

Support the creation of a lasting pathway to Glacier National Park that will provide a safe and scenic experience for our community when you purchase a limited edition print of Glacier National Park art.  The Gateway to Glacier Trail group has already raised 95% of their goal and your donation will help them in this final stretch.  In addition to the print, every buyer’s donation will be recognized on a trail plaque honoring all contributors by name.  This is a great opportunity to enhance our area while enjoying an incredible piece of art created by a local and upcoming artist.  To place an order, please stop by Freedom Bank or contact them at (406) 892-1776 and ask for Cameron or Stefanie.

 

Going-to-the-sun Road Fall Opening Times 2013

August 12th, 2013 by teresa

bend_in_roadThere has never been a better time to experience the beauty of Glacier National Park in all its Fall splendour.  With access to Logan Pass available until October, Fall 2013 offers a chance for visitors to enjoy the glassy waters and golden tamaracks without the crowds of summer.

Make the Historic Tamarack Lodge and Cabins your lodging choice and select a private cabin or stay in our 100 yr old lodge.  We are the closest lodging facility to Glacier National Park open ALL year round.  Enjoy coffee and pastries in the lodge espresso bar while you plan your stay using our maps and brochures.  Our discounted Fall rates make this a great time to enjoy the quite and stillness of Glacier National Park in Fall.

Book your stay today and take advantage of extended opening hours for the Going-to-the-sun Road.

Here are some dates to remember:

  • September 22, 2013 - The last day to drive the entire 50 miles.
  • October 20, 2013 - The last day to drive to Logan Pass.
  • October 21, 2013 - The alpine section of the road will be inaccessible to vehicles.

(NB Logan Pass is 32 miles from the west entrance and 18 miles from the east entrance.)

 

Things to do in the Flathead Valley when it rains.

August 5th, 2013 by teresa

Glacier National Park lodging|Rainy Days

What to do when it rains during your Glacier National Park vacation

As a mountain community we can have periods of wet weather (which are welcomed in the hot, dry Summer months!).  For guests to the Glacier National Park area, this can mean a change of plans is necessary until the weather improves. The Flathead Valley offers a diverse range of activities for a change of pace during wet weather.  To ensure the rain doesn’t dampen your spirits, here’s some suggestions to keep you busy:

Explore our museums and art galleries.  The Conrad Mansion once belonged to a wealthy family responsible for building much of Kalispell and the surrounding areas.  The Mansion has been preserved to show life as it was for the family many years ago and gives an interesting glimpse into another world, now long gone.

The Hockaday Museum of Art, also located in Kalispell, has permanent exhibits, workshops and events related to local life.

Visit the Stumptown Historical Society in Whitefish and learn all about the influence of the railroad on the local community.

Founded in 1981, the Miracle of America Museum in Polson offers a selection of unique memorabilia and a fun day out.

For something just a little bit different, check out the Montana Vortex and House of Mystery!

If that’s all too much culture for you there are bowling alleys, indoor play centres, antique shops and a movie theatre in nearby Kalispell.

Guests of the Historic Tamarack Lodge and Cabins are welcome to use the outdoor pavilion to continue to enjoy the great outdoors whatever the weather, or come on inside and enjoy an espresso in the lodge while you plan your next Glacier National Park or Flathead Valley adventure using our selection of maps and local guidebooks.

Book today – whatever the weather, we’re sure you’ll find yourselves in great company! 

 

North Fork Road Opening

July 26th, 2013 by teresa

polebridgeWith news from Glacier National Park that the entire North Fork Road is scheduled to open this weekend, it seems like a great time to visit Polebridge!

The Inside North Fork Road was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1996. It is a narrow, gravel road and use of recreational, towed, and low-clearance vehicles is strongly discouraged. In ideal conditions, at least two hours are needed to travel the entire length of the Inside North Fork Road. Visitors are advised to prepare for travelling this road by carrying plenty of water and food. Also be prepared to encounter possible downed trees. 

A general store and bakery, the 100 year old Polebridge Mercantile is a favored destination for visitors to Glacier National Park.  Along with the Northern Lights Saloon beside it, the Merc offers a true taste of mountain living with few changes to its original features.

We highly recommend the bear claws!  Make Polebridge a must-see on your itinerary.

 

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