Tips For Enjoying Logan Pass on the Going To The Sun Road in Glacier National Park
One of the most popular destinations in Glacier National Park is the world famous Logan Pass along the Going To The Sun Road. Not only is Logan Pass the highest point along the Going To The Sun Road, but it is also where the trailheads of two of the most popular Glacier Park Hikes are located. These two Glacier Park Hikes– the Hidden Lake Trail and the Highline Trail are amazing, and are definitely among our “Top Ten Things To Do In Glacier Park”. These Glacier Park hikes are suitable for most Glacier Park visitors who are interested in some incredibly scenic, short and easy hikes.
Logan Pass along the Going To The Sun Road is also home to a visitor center and gift shop which is also a draw for Glacier Park vacationers. With all of these features, Logan Pass is understandably an extremely popular “hot spot” for Glacier Park visitors. And with this popularity also comes a few challenges during the peak travel season, so we’d like to share with you some helpful tips to help you maximize your enjoyment of Logan Pass during your next Glacier National Park vacation…..
Tip #1: Bring A Lunch
There is no food or beverages for sale at Logan Pass along the Going To The Sun Road in Glacier National Park, so it’s really important to bring your own food and beverages. There is a drinking fountain near the visitor center, but that’s it!
Tip #2: Get There Early
If you want to find an easy parking spot without delay, it’s best to get to Logan Pass before 10:30 am. After that, the parking lot really starts to fill up fast. If your goal is to spend your day at Logan Pass along the Going To The Sun Road in Glacier National Park, or at least a good portion of it, the earlier you get to the parking lot, the better.
Tip #3: If Parking Lot Sign Says “FULL”…
For the past few years, the NPS has been putting up a sign that says “Parking Lot Full- Expect Delays”. If you see this sign, we recommend that you pull into Logan Pass anyway, and simply drive around until you luck out and grab a parking spot that opens up. Keep in mind that there are always visitors coming and going from the Going To The Sun Road parking lot. The trick is to drive around and around, along with the twenty or so other cars looking for a parking spot, with the hopes of someone leaving the parking lot just as you are ready to pull in and take their spot. STAY CALM and don’t let your blood pressure go through the roof, and have faith that you’ll eventually find a parking spot. It has been our personal experience that we’ve only had to wait at the most 20 minutes for a spot to open up for us. Again, be patient and stay calm.
Once in awhile there will actually be a ranger at the turnout to the Logan Pass parking lot, waving cars on. If this happens, don’t be discouraged. If you’re heading east, simply drive down to Lunch Creek, which is only about a half of a mile east of Logan Pass on the Going To The Sun Road, and enjoy this area for a short while. You can have your lunch here or take in the gorgeous scenery. After a half hour or so, drive back up to Logan Pass with the hopes that the ranger is now allowing cars back in the Logan Pass parking lot. If you’re heading west and the ranger waves you on, head down to Oberlin Bend, which is just about 300 yards west of Logan Pass and enjoy this area for 30 minutes or so. If this area has no parking, you can always head down to what is known as “Big Bend”, where there is plenty of jaw-dropping scenery and plenty of parking. Big Bend is about 3 miles west of Logan Pass.
Tip #4: Bring Hiking Boots / Shoes
Even if you don’t plan on hiking during your Going To The Sun Road adventure, when you get to Logan Pass, something creeps into practically everyone on the pass. We call it “Glacier Park Magic”, and this magic will overcome you and you’ll find yourself walking along the Hidden Lake Trail boardwalk and ending up at the Hidden Lake Overlook. This is probably one of the most gorgeous 1.5 mile hikes in North America, and we’ve seen literally every walk of life on this trail and every size and shape. So you might as well be ready for the “Glacier Park Magic” and bring appropriate footwear, because we can assure you that you will go on a hike while you’re there, whether you were expecting to or not.
The trailhead to the Highline Trail is also located on Logan Pass, and is another world-class hiking experience, and is also one of the most popular Glacier Park Hikes. The Highline Trail is initially quite level, and you may decide to hike just a few hundred yards or make it a full day hike… it’s completely up to you! Whichever the case, make sure you bring your hiking shoes or boots.
Logan Pass along the Going To The Sun Road in Glacier National Park is without question one of the most popular destinations for Glacier National Park Visitors, and by following these simple tips that we’ve just shared with you, your Logan Pass experience will be far more pleasant and enjoyable.