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Yes, We're Crazy, Going in April, Need Suggestions

Bonita, CA
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Yes, We're Crazy, Going in April, Need Suggestions

I had an airline voucher and free use of a condo near Glacier Ntl Park, but the voucher was going to expire so we are going mid-April for our wedding anniversary. I KNOW-NOT A GREAT TIME TO GO...but what, if any hikes might be open in the park? Can we at least get to MacDonald Lake/lodge? Are there hikes around there. Where can we get snow shoes to rent and will we need them in April? Other than GNP, what else should we see around Kalispell? Any other local parks to hike? Can we rent horses in the park in April?

Edited: 15 March 2011, 01:54
buffalo
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1. Re: Yes, We're Crazy, Going in April, Need Suggestions

GNP in April.....unusual for visitors....most of the hiking in inaccesible in June....

You will probably be able to drive to Lake McD Lodge (though it won't be open)....any hike would involve snowshoes.....Avalanche Lake might be realistic in snowshoes...if you are really hard-core there are more in that area....

Here is a snowshoe trip up to Mount Brown recently (5,000 feet of gain in not many miles).....

…nationalparkschat.com/phpBB3/viewtopic.php…

Bonita, CA
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2. Re: Yes, We're Crazy, Going in April, Need Suggestions

I know it's unusual ,but that's when we'll be there. thanks for the link, the trip looked phenomenal. Do you know if we can rent snowshoes? Someone said we're more likely to get stuck in mud at the lower elevations.

montana
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3. Re: Yes, We're Crazy, Going in April, Need Suggestions

You can rent snowshoes at the Sportsman Ski Haus, located just north of Kalispell with all the big box stores.

You can take a lovely hike along the Swan River Nature Trail, just outside of the town of Bigfork (which you should visit anyway).

Hiking in Jewel Basin, also outside of Bigfork, will likely be still snowed in, but you can check it.

For horseback riding, try www.artemisacres.com Artemis Acres is just south of Kalispell, and they run half-day trips in the mountains right behind their ranch. Really nice people.

There will be plenty to do in the Flathead Valley, so enjoy your visit!

Arlington, Virginia
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4. Re: Yes, We're Crazy, Going in April, Need Suggestions

The National Bison Range is open in April. Perhaps you would enjoy the drive down there to see the bison.

http://www.fws.gov/bisonrange/nbr/

Bonita, CA
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5. Re: Yes, We're Crazy, Going in April, Need Suggestions

Thank you, that sounds great.

Bonita, CA
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6. Re: Yes, We're Crazy, Going in April, Need Suggestions

Great idea, thanks.

indiana
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for Glacier National Park
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7. Re: Yes, We're Crazy, Going in April, Need Suggestions

Toddnick, what a great link to the snowshoe hike. Last trip to Glacier we hiked to Mt. Brown. Can't imagine doing it in snowshoes. Beautiful photos! Thanks

montana
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8. Re: Yes, We're Crazy, Going in April, Need Suggestions

You can also hook up with the Swan Rangers, an informal hiking group that goes out each and every Saturday, for a day hike into the Swan Range Mountains, which are outside of Bigfork, in the mountains south of Glacier NP. Here's the link: www.swanrange.org then click on "Hiking". You will most likely need snowshoes (rent from Sportsman Ski Haus). You will find yourselves amidst a group of friendly, knowledgable local folks who will welcome you regardless of your ability level.

Have fun being here in April!

buffalo
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9. Re: Yes, We're Crazy, Going in April, Need Suggestions

That looks like one STEEP hike...congrats on doing it!!!! I'm planning on doing similar elevation day hikes...Floral Park from Logan Pass to Sperry Chalet, Mount James (from Cut Bank Trailhead, out and back...20 miles), Red Gap Pass via Swiftcurrent loop dayhike (22.5 miles) in 2011, but to do that kind of elevation it in a lot less distance is impressive...

Spokane, Washington
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for Glacier National Park, Spokane
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10. Re: Yes, We're Crazy, Going in April, Need Suggestions

I did Mt. Brown as a day hike, tried to push to get a good workout. Boy did I! Can't imagine it in snowshoes.......

Toddnick, I've done the red gap, take the shortcut just past ptarmigan tunnel!

When are you doing floral park?? Always been on my list, but reluctant to do it solo as it is sooo much off trail