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Iceberg Lake Glacier National Park

Iceberg Lake Glacier National Park

Snow Location: The dominating feature towards the west is foot Mount Wilbur, and lying towards the northwest, in the direction you’re heading at this point, is the Ptarmigan Wall. It has it all. Be prepared for many travelers lakeside and on the trail.

Iceberg Lake, Glacier National Park

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When I had a chunk of time off in the summer a few years ago, my girlfriend and I finally took a trip up to Glacier from Jackson where we spent the better part of week camping and hiking. We chose the Iceberg Lake Trail as our first hike upon arriving in Glacier and I felt like it represented much of the beauty and character of this amazing park.

For fit and experienced hikers, Iceberg Lake is a relatively mellow half-day hike that takes you through open meadows with big views. The destination, Iceberg Lake, features a picturesque lake surrounded by steep cliffs.

True to its name, chunks of ice from the winter snowpack calve off into the lake early to mid-summer every year, making for an entirely unique and dramatic setting.

Distance and Elevation Gain Difficulty: For a reasonably fit and experienced hiker, this is a relatively easy trek due to the gradual elevation gain.

For a less experienced hiker, I would consider this a moderate-level hike mainly because of the distance. Distance: 9. This hike is an out-and-back. This map covers the entire park as well as neighboring Waterton Lakes. Iceberg Lake Glacier National Park Illustrated also sells region-specific maps for different sections of the park, including Many Glacier which covers the Iceberg Lake Trail. How to get to Iceberg Lake Glacier National Park trailhead From St. Mary, the trailhead is about a minute drive, all on paved roads.

Upon reaching the Many Glacier area, follow the signs to Glacier National Park To Great Falls Mt Swift Current Motor Lodge and park at the north end of the lodge area near the cabins.

Look for a sign marking the Iceberg-Ptarmigan Trailhead, which is where your hike will begin. Trail Breakdown and Highlights The trail starts out by ascending gradually across open meadows on the southwest-facing slopes of Mt. Henkel while paralleling the Wilbur Creek Valley below. The views on this section of the trail occur early and often, with expansive panoramas in the distance of the cirque where Iceberg Lake lies.

Keep an eye out for beargrass — the tall white flowers that Glacier is famous for. After 2. Stay left at this trail junction and continue the final 2 miles to Iceberg Lake.

Make no mistake, this is Glacier National Park To Great Falls Mt popular hike, but for good reason.

That being said, the best time to do this hike is in July and early August when the trail to the lake has dried out and there are icebergs are in the lake. Wildflowers are at their peak during this time, too. Average highs at the Many Glacier weather station are in the 70s during July and August, but when I did this hike during the second week of July, there was an ongoing heatwave with dry conditions and high temperatures at Many Glacier were getting into the upper 80s. June can be quite wet in Glacier with frequent showers and thunderstorms and occasional heavy rains.

July and August are drier but afternoon thunderstorms sometimes occur. When it comes to thunderstorm potential and lightning exposure — the trail stays in the lower portions of the valley, but it is open and fairly exposed for much of the way. Keep in mind that cold fronts can bring cool and wet conditions at any time of the year, and snow can fall as late as June and as early as September.

Glacier National Park does update its current trail conditions periodically throughout the season. Wildlife, bugs, and water Wildlife viewing opportunities are numerous on this trek….

How to get to the trailhead

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However, this is incredibly dangerous. However, as you proceed further along, the trail enters a fairly dense section of pine forest, roughly 1. Before the trail tucks behind Mount Wilbur, look left toward the glaciers flanking Swiftcurrent Mountain.