Peakbagging In Glacier National Park, 1995


My first backpacking trip was in Glacier National Park in 1971. I really was a novice at the time but the trip taught me a lot about glories of the northern Rocky Mountains. I finally returned to the Park in 1995. We were hosted by Scott an Karin Bates in Whitefish, Montana, a resort town similar to Ketchum, Idaho. We hiked to the top of Big Mountain on our first day. Big Mountain is a downhill ski hill. It is a long way to the top but the resort’s gondola was operating and we rode it down.

We used A Climber Guide To Glacier National Park by J. Gordon Edwards, 1984, for route information. I’m not sure if there is a newer edition but the 1984 edition is a great resource. I recommend using a guidebook as the routes are often steep and cross narrow ledges and climb through cliff bands. You need to find the correct spot to climb the cliff bands and the guidebook will help you get it done.

There are a lot of challenging peaks in the Park. The Park is characterized by deep valleys and steep peaks. The best, high access is from the Going to the Sun Highway at Logan Pass. We climbed four peaks starting at or near Logan Pass.

9/11/1995. Pollock Mountain, 9,211 feet, via E Coulior, Class 3. Piegam Mountain 9,230 #17-95 via W slopes. Both peaks accessed from the Going to the Sun Highway E of Logan Pass.

Starting up Pollock Mountain.

Mount Pollock from Mount Reynolds.

Pollock Mountain from Piegram Mountain.

Climbing into the cliff bands on Pollock Mountain.

Ascending the crux east coulor on Pollock Mountain.

following the ridge up to the cliff bands.

Looking out in the distance from a narrow ledge on Pollock Mountain.

Pollock Mountain on the left and Piegram Mountain on the left.

Ascending Piegram with Pollock Mountain in the background.

Crossing talus.

Piegram Mountain from Pollock Mountain.

9/12. Mount Reynolds 9,125 feet, via SW face route which was accessed from Logan Pass and the Hidden Lake trail. Clas 3.

Mount Reynolds.

A game trail on Mount Reynolds lower slopes.

Working our way across Mount Reynold’s south face.

The summit of Mount Reynolds.

Clements Mountain from Mount Reynolds.

Glacier National Park is a vertical world broken by deep valleys.

Cataract Mountain.

9/13. Logan Pass to Granite Park Chalet and the Loop on the Going to the Sun Highway with a side trip to Swiftcurrent I Mountain 8,436 feet,via the trial.

Swiftcurrent Mountain.

Hiking along the Garden Wall Trail.

The Garden Wall from Pollock Mountain.

The Garden Wall Trail.

Hiking toward the Granite Park Chalet.

Swiftcurrent Pass.

Approaching the Granite Park Chalet.

The Granite Park Chalet.

Looking back to the Granite Park Chalet from the ridge leading to Swiftcurrent Mountain.

The summit of Swiftcurrent Mountain.

9/14. Crowfeet Mountain 8,914 feet, via N ridge and W face from Ptarmigan Tunnel. Class 3 summit tower.

The headwall above Ptarmigan Lake. The Ptarmigan Tunnel is the dark spot below the top.

Ptarmigan Lake.

Ptarmigan Lake from the Ptarmigan Tunnel.

The entrance to the tunnel.

Looking through the tunnel.

Elizabeith Lake from the north side of the Ptarmigan Tunnel. On my first ever backpack I spent the first night at this lake.

Below are a few other peaks worth considering if you visit the park.

Bearhat Mountain from Mount Reynolds.

The Dragon Tail from Mount Reynolds.

Haystack Butte.

Mount Clemments on the left and Mount Oberlin on the right.

Cataract Mountain from Mount Pollock.

Going to the Sun Mountain.

The Piegram Glacier,