Skiing and Snowshoeing

Enjoy Glacier’s winter landscape, but take into account your skiing ability, and check with rangers for local weather and snow conditions. Severe weather, lack of snow, winter rains, or melting conditions can quickly alter the difficulty of any winter trip. Most ski routes are not marked. A topographic map will help. Plan to break trail on less popular routes. The Middle and North Forks of the Flathead River present major barriers to travel on the west side of the park. Skiing on frozen lakes is dangerous and not recommended. Skiers, snowshoers, and hikers are asked to maintain separate tracks and register at the trailhead registration boxes. Climbers should complete the Voluntary Climber's Registration form, available at ranger stations, Park Headquarters, and the Apgar Visitor Center. For information on current closures, please visit our Area and Trail Closures page.

As winter snows start to melt, emerging vegetation is revealed. Please stay off these fragile areas. In spring, warming conditions greatly increase avalanche activity. Cross park trips contain extreme avalanche and terrain hazards and should be attempted only by experienced and well-equipped parties. A permit is required for backcountry camping.

Pets must be on a leash at all times. Pets are not allowed on trails, unplowed roads, or in the backcountry. Snowmobiles are not permitted anywhere in Glacier National Park. Ice is common on roads and on heavily skied trails.




Winter backcountry travel increases the risk of hypothermia and frostbite. Hypothermia, the “progressive physical collapse and reduced mental capacity resulting from the chilling of the inner core of the body,” is the primary killer of outdoor enthusiasts. Drink liquids, stay dry, carry survival gear, wear layers of clothing, and snack frequently. Be alert to symptoms of drowsiness and confusion. Once hypothermia sets in, external sources of warmth are necessary to revive the victim. Frostbite can occur on the ears, fingers, toes, face, or any exposed skin.

Ski Trails in the Park - click on map for trail information in that area


Apgar - West Glacier   Lake McDonald - Avalanche   North Fork
St. Mary   Two Medicine   Marias Pass