Glacier Outdoor Center Blog

Posted: January 21st, 2013 by kali

Glacier National Park will waive their entrance fees today! In honor of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, Monday, January 21st, 2013–so get on up here!

Be sure to take advantage of this great opportunity to get outside!  Glacier Park is not closed during the winter, there is limited access however.

Some great activities are snowshoeing to Rocky Point from the Camas Road bridge.

snowshoe to rocky point glacier par

Cross-country skiing the McDonald Creek Loop from Lake McDonald Lodge

snowshoe glacier park mcdonald creek

Or take a scenic drive up to Polebridge. Although the Mercantile is not open in the winter the road is plowed up to the Canadian Border.  Usually, you can stumble upon a heard of elk on the North Fork Road.

Elk in Glacier Park



Posted: January 8th, 2013 by kali


Up here in West Glacier, we’ve received quite a bit of snow since the beginning of December.  The landscape is covered with the white stuff, making it a winter wonderland. So be sure to come check out our little piece of heaven sometime this winter! Glacier National Park’s gates aren’t closed for the winter season and it is an amazing time of year to come cross-country skiing, hiking, snowshoeing and wildlife viewing.


Posted in Montana | No Comments
Posted: January 4th, 2013 by kali

All of us at the Glacier Outdoor Center hope you and your family had a Safe and Happy Holiday!

glacier raft company employee photo

Posted: November 30th, 2012 by OM

Chestnuts are roasting on an open fire and now that we’re finally able to stand after the Thanksgiving festivities, we’ve embarked upon our next adventure – cutting down our own Christmas tree.


Now, if you’re new to Montana then you may or may not know the proper steps to go into the forest to cut down a Christmas tree. Lucky for you, Glacier Raft Co. is here to help. Follow these tips for a proper cutting experience.

1. Permits to cut down your own Christmas tree are only $5 – a small price to pay for bragging rights to your very own tree.

2. Families can obtain up to three permits. Permits are required if you want to avoid fines when you’re chopping.

3. Tree cutting is NOT allowed in wilderness or BLM-wilderness study areas. So don’t even go there.

4. When you purchase your permit you will be provided with an info sheet. READ IT! They don’t just write these things for fun.

5. The Forest Service and BLM offices are open weekdays 8:00am – 4:30pm. If you can’t make it here during business hours, you can get your permit from these other locations.

Anaconda: Hardware Hank

Boulder: Ace Hardware Store

Wise River: Wise River Mercantile

Ennis: True Value Hardware

Harrison: Wheat and Thistle

Sheridan: McLeod Mercantile

Butte: Bob Ward and Sons Sporting Goods

Lima: Ralph’s Exxon

For more information contact the Forest Service at (406) 683-3900, or the BLM at (406) 533-7600.

Happy Chopping!


Posted: November 15th, 2012 by kali

Ever been curious about where we store all our gear at the raft co? When you come to hang out with us in the summertime, you see our colorful array of boats, PFDs, coolers, tables and fishing gear but when you’re finished with your trip it all seems to disappear, leaving behind an immaculate campus.

Where does the gear go?  Well, our guides and managers take pride in organization.  There is a place for everything. Trailers go into the proper queue, boats go into the stalls, rafts get cleaned and rolled up in the barn loft, coolers hang happily from the rafters, busses await their winter maintenance and all is good on the western front at  Glacier Raft Co. –see for yourself in the pics below!


Posted: October 18th, 2012 by kali

You may have noticed the hillside turning yellow.  Thankfully, it is not the bark beetle in action, and the trees are not dying.  These yellow-needled trees are Western Larch trees, otherwise known as Tamaracks.

western larch needles

Tamaracks are the only deciduous conifers in the west.  They are related to the Eastern Larch which is East of the Mississippi. The largest Western Larch is actually located in Seeley Lake, MT.

western larch in the fall

Western Larch are one of the only deciduous cone-baring trees that loose their needles.  They are also highly sought out for firewood because they burn hotter and they are easy to split.

glacier park

During the spring, Western Larch are a lighter green in the spring and eventually turn a dark green so they are hard to distinguish from the rest of the forest.  In the fall, after the aspens and cottonwoods have lost their leaves, Western Larch needles loose their chlorophyll and turn yellow. Eventually all the needless fall to the ground and they are left bare for the winter.

cabin and larch

So, this fall take a moment to view these magnificent Western Larch colors.  They are quite a sight and cover many mountains around Glacier Park and the Flathead Valley.

western larch in montana

Reference -

Posted in Montana | 1 Comment
Posted: October 3rd, 2012 by kali

October 3rd graced us with a heavy dusting of snow in the higher elevations.

On the drive to work Teakettle Mountain was covered with snow.  You know it’s going to be a good day when this mountain has fresh snow on it!

teakettle mountain snow

Driving into West Glacier all the surrounding mountains had quite a bit of snow.  Apgar Mountain in Glacier National Park was something spectacular this morning.

apgar mountain glacier park october snow

There are still a few clouds over the mountains in Glacier National Park but hopefully they will clear up later today so we can get a spectacular show from mother nature!

glacier national park october snow


Posted: September 27th, 2012 by kali


whitewater rafting montana glacier

In case you didn’t get a chance to see them while you were in Montana, check out your trip photos. You can order them online or give us a call at 800-235-6781 to order digital photos!

We appreciate being a part of your 2012 vacation.  We hope we provided you with awesome, unforgettable memories.  As always, we enjoyed our guests and sharing this wonderful place with you all.

Have a fun winter and come see us next year!

Posted: September 14th, 2012 by kali

glacier raft company employees

It’s hard to leave West Glacier and Glacier Raft Co (really really hard for some – who don’t actually leave), but we must move one, at least for the winter.  Ever wonder where everyone goes?  Here’s a few of our guide and staff off-season activities and where they move to:

  • Reservations gal, Kirstin moved to Fort Collins, CO to attend Veterinarian School.
  • Guide, Reid is going to school at Boise State for Anthropology and also enjoys snowboarding at Bogus Basin.
  • Fly Fishing Guide, Chad will be heading down to Asheville, NC to continue being a fishing guide.
  • Jake H, Jordan, Patrick, Paul, Abi, Maddi, Mitch, Graham, LeAndra and Kelsey are all attending the University of Montana in Missoula. Go Griz.
  • Seasoned Veteran Guide, Travis will work up at Whitefish Mountain Resort attending lifts.
  • Chris, Tyler, Erik, Nate, Fred, Sam and Siri all move to Utah to go to school and/or work at Alta Ski Resort.
  • Kitchen Manager, Elizabeth will be teaching kindergarten in Tirana, Albania.
  • Downtown office staffer, Kylynn joined the Peace Corps and will be heading to Paraguay.

And a few of us are lucky enough to enjoy this area in the winter – Kali, Sally, Deb, Darwon, Jess, Sam, Jake, Bry, Adam, Jimmy, Chirs, Connor, Jeff, Mike, Marc, Bill and Zach. We all find various jobs around the valley including Whitefish Mountain Resort, teaching at one of the local schools and some of us spend winters preparing for next season.

Thank you to all of our staff this year!  We had an amazing season and we always wish you the best in the off season.  See you next summer!



Posted in Montana | No Comments
Posted: September 3rd, 2012 by kali

We can’t state it enough – fall in Glacier National Park is one of our favorite times of the year.  Not only do the crowds dissipate, but the colors are always spectacular.  The changing of the leaves and the cooler temperatures always make our hearts skip.  It’s a time of year like none other.  Fly fishing is also at an all time high during the fall and our log cabins are so peaceful and quite.  So get yourself out for a great fall experience in Glacier National Park!