We decided to do the longest hike of our trip on our final day in Glacier: Iceberg Lake! Located in the Many Glacier area of the park, it’s a stunner. You won’t want to miss it if you’re in the area.
Hiked: Early July
Best time to hike: May-October
Accessibility: The road to the Many Glacier area was under construction during our visit and involved about 40 minutes on gravel road. However, it was doable with a sedan.
Length & elevation: 9.3 miles, 1,450 feet elevation gain
Crowds: Highly trafficked
Trail views: Mountains, lakes, streams, waterfalls, meadows, forest, icebergs!
Parking is easy, it’s in the Swiftcurrent Hotel parking lot area. Alternatively, you can walk the ~half mile from Many Glacier campground if you have a site there.
The start of the hike is a bit of forest and then meadow. It’s prime grizzly habitat, according to the signs posted at the trailhead, so this is definitely a trail you’ll want your bear spray handy for. While we didn’t run into any bears, we did get “led”up the trail for a bit by a deer.
The trail climbs more steeply at the beginning, then levels out for a while as you proceed through the meadowy area. There are absolutely incredible mountain views all along this area. You’ll want to stop and get some pictures.
Ptarmigan Falls is past the halfway along the trail to Iceberg Lake. Initially we had wondered if we might just do that hike, but I’m glad we pushed on, because there was no unobstructed view of the falls. They were mainly blocked by trees. I’d say it would be a little disappointing to end the trail there, especially considering how great Iceberg Lake was.
The trail from the falls to the lake is pretty relaxed. Continued mountain and forest views had us feeling pretty great!
When we got to this view of the lake, we couldn’t resist having a mini photo shoot. Peep the icebergs. Can you blame us?!
The lake has a bit of a rocky shoreline where we ate our trail lunch and appreciated the icebergs up close. Note that the icebergs do fully melt in the summer, so depending on when you visit, you may or may not get to see them.
We really enjoyed the hike to Iceberg Lake. It was a great way to cap off our time in Glacier National Park – perhaps the most beautiful region we’ve ever been lucky enough to visit together.