Avalanche Lake

Avalanche Lake

The classic Avalanche Lake hike. My guess is that it’s the most travelled hike in the park due to its length, accessibility and fantastic views. It was a rainy day, but yielded some nice wildlife. Of course the waterfalls and views were stunning as ever.

Avalanche Lake
Bald Eagle

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11 responses to “Avalanche Lake”

    • Thanks Carrie! I tried to keep the scary stuff out on this one. 😉 (I can’t promise there won’t be snakes and bears in future episodes though)

  1. Strangely, we have never done this hike. Many excuses- too short, too easy, too crowded. Now I’m definitely going to get around to it. Crowds in Glacier can always be avoided by hiking very early, i.e. 7 A.M.- first hikers on the trail always see the most animals.

    Loved the mountain goats in the mist!

    • You know Mike, those same excuses are what keep many locals from the Park at all. Too sad. Glad you’re inspired! Get out and see it. I agree that early in the morning is a great time… of course, I always have a time getting early myself. Also, I recommend just being aware. I’ve caught myself walking past animals this year that were frozen solid and I just happened to see. Had I been just looking down, I would have missed them… like most people do!

  2. Jake,
    My Dad is Mike Kinsella and he introduced me to your site. I love the videos and commentary and dearly wish I was making Glacier this year from Arizona. My own girls, nine and ten, did their first hike two years ago completely in the snow with their Grandfather to the Hidden Lake Overlook. Quite an adventure for two little girls who live with heat and sun year-round. I beg to differ with my father though, I have done the Avalanche Lake hike and agree it’s a classic with a beautiful end result. A great beginner hike in Glacier.

    • Thanks Shannon! I agree that it’s a classic and beautiful hike. I think my video got him to rethink the trail which is great. I will, however, agree with him on the crowded part. During peak times, there are quite a few people on the trail. Hitting it earlier in the season, or just earlier in the day is recommended. During peak times, check out many other trails that people don’t go on such as the trail on the west side of McDonald Creek in the Apgar area. Saw a bear cub, orioles, sapsuckers, hummingbirds and loads of other birds!

  3. We visited Glacier for the first time in August, and Avalanche Lake was my first hike there. It was stunning to see all the waterfalls cascading into the lake. It was a bit crowded, but we actually found a parking spot near the handicapped parking & campground entrance. I think people thought it was a handicap spot. I’m enjoying your documentary on some of the other hikes, so that when I return someday I’ll know what other good hikes to do.

  4. Very busy trail but if done earlier in the day it can be a very pleasant hike. It seems like I do it at least every other year yet it never looks the same. It can be a pretty muddy walk in June.

  5. Hi Jacob – Purchased your guides. We will have limited time in GNP – gonna do the road and a couple shorter hikes – Hidden Lake and Avalanche Lake. Any need to rent bear spray for these two? Sounds like in late August we won’t be alone.

    • Avalanche Lake has seen quite a few grizzlies this year. If you decide that you aren’t going to rent it, just make sure you’re hanging out within some closer distance with more people. I always recommend it regardless. I think you’re fine for Hidden Lake.

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