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“Great Hike in Glacier”
Review of Highline Trail

Highline Trail
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: A popular hiking trail with phenomenal views.
Reviewed August 12, 2010

We hike the 11.6 mile long Highline Trail to the Granite Park Chalet and back down to the loop in August. The best part of the day was when we saw 8 bighorn sheep in the parking lot just as we were pulling up! The Highline Trail is a really nice trail, though. It starts off very rocky and immediately climbs above the Going to the Sun Road. Even though the trail is fairly wide, they have installed a steel cable for hikers to hold on to if needed. After passing the rocky cliff area, the trail continues to follow the road before reaching a saddle between the Continental Divide and Haystack Butte. It then splits away from the road and continues to the Granite Park Chalet. There was a large snowfield near the saddle that apparently never melts! Most of the trail was at or above treeline, and was surrounded by beautiful wildflowers. Halfway into the hike, we were rewarded with incredible views of the mountains surrounding Lake McDonald. After 7.6 miles, we reached the Granite Park Chalet, which was built in 1915 to provide overnight accommodations for hikers and backpackers. From the chalet, we took the Loop Trail back to the Going to the Sun Road, which was steep and very hot in the summer sun. We did take the shuttle back to Lake McDonald, and would NEVER do that again. The shuttle was so slow and it took almost an hour just to get to the lodge.

8  Thank outdoorventurer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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"haystack butte"
in 43 reviews
"granite park chalet"
in 56 reviews
"garden wall"
in 39 reviews
"grinnell glacier overlook"
in 25 reviews
"logan pass"
in 156 reviews
"afraid of heights"
in 30 reviews
"mountain goats"
in 47 reviews
"parking lot"
in 35 reviews
"down hill"
in 13 reviews
"rocky ledge"
in 4 reviews
"four miles"
in 10 reviews
"sun road"
in 42 reviews
"continental divide"
in 23 reviews
"steep downhill"
in 4 reviews
"great hike"
in 26 reviews
"big horn sheep"
in 23 reviews
"parked our car"
in 6 reviews

390 - 394 of 407 reviews

Reviewed August 11, 2010

I hiked this the 2nd day of our trip to Glacier with my fiance. It was awesome and the sites area amazing, so bring plenty of memory for your digital camera. We are from Chicago, so about 4 miles in, we started feeling the altitude. I got dizzy, pulese started pounding, and my legs felt really heavy. I'm in great shape, but I think in retrospect I would've waited a day or so before starting off at 6600 ft and hiking up to around 7250. Also, bring ponchos/rain gear laong with layered clothing. We got caught in a sudden thunderstorm on the way down to the loop from Granite Chalet and were pelted with hail. When it tunred over to rain, the ponchos helped. Keep in mind the descent from the chalet is "punishing" as described ina hiking book. This is totally accurate.

9  Thank JGMaya
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 25, 2010

This hike was amazing, and adding the hike to Grinnell was brutal and exhilarating. Much has already been said about that, but I would like to add one very valuable tip.

Since the trail head is at Logan Pass, most will either park at the Loop and shuttle up, or head straight to Logan Pass and shuttle back up after the trail has ended. On a very quiet day, this might work fine, but if the park is busy, be prepared to wait for a very long time. It can be frustrating, but there is a way around it.

We attempted to shuttle up before the hike, and were in line behind two hikers (we got there around 7:45). About ten minutes later, five more hikers showed up. The first shuttle was completely full, so we had to wait for the next one as our collective frustrations grew. After about 45 minutes of waiting, the second shuttle came, but could only bring two people up. Everyone waiting then agreed on a plan.

The first two hikers took the shuttle up, and my partner and I piled everyone else into our car (we had a Subaru Outback, so it was cozy but workable). We all met at the top, as we were right behind the shuttle. Our car was now at Logan Pass, and the other two groups had their cars at the Loop (both also had very roomy cars).

My partner and I set out on the hike, and would attempt to have the shuttle take us back up after we finished. If either of the groups finished after us and saw us waiting, they would take us instead (if they never passed us and we were gone, they would just head home). If they passed us on the trail, they agreed to wait a certain amount of time, depending on how far apart we were, and how long the line was. It's pretty obvious when you pass someone on this trail.

My partner and I finished first, and saw that the wait was around 2 hours for the shuttle. 15 minutes later, one group finished and took us to the top (they apparently shuttled more people back down as well). It worked like a charm.

If you can find a group of flexible hikers, this could save your day. I would recommend that the fastest set of hikers drive everyone else to the top, as that still leaves the chance of catching a shuttle back up, saving the others a trip. The drive back and forth isn't super quick, but it's a nice way to get some great hiking karma!

6  Thank jkbramer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 19, 2010

Have just been away last 4 days in Glacier. The highline trail is amazing. It starts off a little scary with sharp cliffs on one side, while you are walking along a rock wall holding on to a cable. But the views are breath-taking. We did it on the 17/07/10 and did half of it as a ranger-led hike, upto Haystack Butte. Lots of interesting information. The trail is definitely safe to complete now. We went through independently as the rangers were only doing the first 1/3rd of it, because of a couple of treacherous snowbridges. There are a LOT of people there already, so if you want peace and quiet, this is not the place. We saw many mountain goats, deer and marmots.
We got to the parking lot at Logan's Pass around 830 and half the car park was full. So if you plan to drive, get there early.
The trail starts above treeline and descends from there slowly. After Granite Chalet, the rest of the Loop trail is through the forest and sharply downhill (not easy on the knees). Lots of wildflowers along the way. Beautiful scenery and definitely recommended.

3  Thank Vru85
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed April 10, 2010

the highline trail is a great dayhike if you want to get out of your car but still see a lot of the park. good overlooks, lots of scenery change, and i almost always see mountain goats, bighorn sheep and marmots on this trail.

it's a relatively easy hike because it's mostly downhill from logan's pass. granite park chalet is the perfect spot to rest and eat lunch and stare at heaven's peak. from there the trail down to the Loop is knee-pounding and repetitive, so i would recommend hiking over swiftcurrent pass instead, if you can make it the extra few miles. and the swiftcurrent mountain lookout is absolutely worth the trudge.

4  Thank ladykatherine
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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