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April 17-18 Weekend Road Update for Glacier National Park
Contact: Amy Vanderbilt, 406 888-5838
Contact: Wade Muehlhof, 406 888-7895
WEST GLACIER, MONT. – Officials at Glacier National Park report that the east side of the park received nearly a foot of new snow this week, sending the plows back to areas already cleared once. It’s a reminder that the progress of the plowing, and subsequent road openings, is completely weather dependant and can change day to day.
Going-to-the-Sun Road (Sun Road) is currently open for vehicles 10 miles to Lake McDonald Lodge on the park’s west side and six miles to Rising Sun on the east side. The road into Two Medicine Valley is currently open to vehicle traffic to Running Eagle Falls. Kintla Road is open from Polebridge to Big Prairie. Many Glacier Road opens to vehicle traffic Saturday, April 17. All other park roads remain closed to motorized vehicles due to snow and ice.
Plowing is complete on the west side of Sun Road from Lake McDonald Lodge to about one mile past The Loop, but parts of the road are covered with ice. Parking remains at the Lodge until the ice melts out. There are usually no restrictions on hikers and bicyclists in effect over the weekend, but that is always subject to change.
Starting Monday, April 19, spring construction starts on the west side of the Sun Road, with crews working between Logan Creek Pit and the West Tunnel. Construction, plowing and weather will determine where vehicle and hiker/biker access will be allowed.
The Camas Road has been plowed, but a few miles of the road surface are covered with ice. The road remains closed to motor vehicles at this time.
Glacier National Park remains open year round for various recreational opportunities, but weather and snow conditions dictate when park roads are open for vehicle access.
April 17 through 25 is National Park Week, and entrance fees are waived all week. National Park Week, a program of the National Park Service, is an opportunity to engage families and communities in America’s Great Outdoors, reconnecting them with nature and creating close to home opportunities for people to get outside, be active, and have fun.
Through April, the Apgar Visitor Center is open weekends only from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. During the week, visitors can stop at park headquarters in West Glacier for information and backcountry permits. Headquarters is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Visitors can also phone 406-888-7800 for general park information, including the specific location of hiker/bicycle closures.
Current road conditions for Glacier National Park are available by calling 511, the Montana Department of Transportation Traveler Information System. If a phone does not support 511, call 1-800-226-7623. Both numbers are toll-free. Select “Glacier Park Tourist Information” from the main menu to hear Glacier’s road report. An interactive map showing current vehicle access points is available online at: http://www.nps.gov/applications/glac/roadstatus/roadstatus.cfm.
- NPS –
Did You Know?
Lake McDonald is the largest lake in the park with a length of 10 miles and a depth of 472 feet. The glacier that carved the Lake McDonald valley is estimated to have been around 2,200 feet thick.