Self Guided Going-To-The-Sun-Road Tour
THEPARKGUIDE tour of the Going–To-The-Sun Road is available for download exclusively through the TravelStorys App for $12.99. The tour automatically tells you everything you need to know while you drive. It’s like having a tour guide sitting in the back seat. The guide simply follows you wherever you decide to go in the park.
The Tour: Includes all of the Going-To-The-Sun Road, as well as the roads leading to it from the park entrances, and a few more that you would be likely to use. The tour gives you detailed information about views, stops, services, food, trailheads and bathrooms! It includes the Logan Pass, Apgar and St. Mary Visitor Centers, as well as the Apgar, Lake McDonald, and Rising Sun resort areas. You will be encouraged to get out of your car and interact with the park to see the animals, rivers, lakes, mountains and, of course, glaciers.
The Drive: This remarkable road is 50 miles from end to end, and passes through a huge variety of habitats and ecosystems on the way over Logan Pass. The geology, plants and animals are packed together in a short distance because of the change in altitude and the confluence of so many weather patterns. Glacier National Park is wild country, and wildlife may be present anywhere along Going-to-the-Sun Road. Mountain goats and Bighorn sheep are consistently seen near Logan Pass.
Glaciers! There are still glaciers in Glacier National Park, but they are on their way out, so see them while you can! Jackson Glacier Overlook affords the best opportunity to see a glacier from the road. Jackson Glacier Overlook is located on the east side of the Going-to-the-Sun Road between Logan Pass and St. Mary.
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Things To Know:
When is the road open?: If you are taking the Glacier National Park Tour, understand that the Going-To-The-Sun Road is not always open to drive from one side to the other. It has a massive accumulation of snow in the winter that has to be plowed off before it is completely open. But, portions of Going-to-the-Sun Road remain open all year and provide access to many locations and activities. The opening of the alpine portion varies, based on snowfall and plowing progress.
There is no set date for the road to open. Typically the road has been fully open in late June or early July. Closing portions of Going-to-the-Sun Road is also weather dependent. Typically the road is fully open until the third Monday of October, but that can change due to weather conditions at any point.
Vehicle Size Restrictions: The road was originally built for smaller cars. Vehicles, and vehicle combinations (i.e., including trailers), longer than 21 feet (including bumpers) or wider than 8 feet (including mirrors), are prohibited between Avalanche Campground and the Rising Sun picnic area parking. Likewise, vehicle and vehicle combinations over 10 feet in height may have difficulty driving west from Logan Pass to the Loop, due to rock overhangs.
- Time: Without stopping, it takes at least 2 hours to drive the full 50 miles of Going-to-the-Sun Road. You will definitely stop!
- Altitude: Logan Pass is the highest point on Going-to-the Sun Road at 6,646 feet – there is real mountain driving to get there.
- Distance: Logan Pass with the Visitor Center and Ranger Station is 32 miles (51.5 km) from the west entrance and 18 miles (29 km) from the east entrance. Parking can be a mess, the parking lot at Logan Pass is usually full between 9:30 am and 4:00 pm, though this can vary during peak weekends.
- Cost: There is no cost specific to driving Going-to-the-Sun Road. Your normal park entrance fee allows you to experience this engineering marvel.
Amenities along the road:
- Gas is not available anywhere in the park or on the Going-to-the-Sun Road.
- Food and lodging can be found along the road at Rising Sun, Lake McDonald Lodge, and Apgar Village.
- Picnic areas may be found at Rising Sun, Avalanche Creek, Sprague Creek, and Apgar.
- 5 of the 13 campgrounds in Glacier are located along the road: Apgar, Sprague Creek, Avalanche, Rising Sun, and St. Mary. See the Glacier NP Camping section for more information.
- There are three visitor centers located along Going-to-the-Sun Road: Apgar Visitor Center, Logan Pass Visitor Center, and St. Mary Visitor Center. All have restroom facilities, trip planning information, bookstores, drinking water, and exhibits.
- For information on specific points of interest along Going-to-the-Sun Road, visit the Shuttle Stops page on the NPS site.
Glacier National Park Tour – General Information: