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“A step back in time”
Review of Izaak Walton Inn

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Izaak Walton Inn
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Essex
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed December 9, 2013

This place is so cool. It is like stepping back in time to old America at the turn of last century. The woodwork in the building is detailed and beautiful. The Inn has it's own restaurant and with good food. I was pleasantly surprised with their food considering the small amount of people they serve. Kudos to the owners for that.
It goes without saying that Essex is in some of the most beautiful land that America has to offer.
Remember this place is very isolated, cellphone and wireless is spotty and/or non existent - which was exactly what I was looking for.
Disclaimer: It was actually last summer that we stayed there but the calendar only has options for 2013. I stopped by this past July though.

Room Tip: If you want quietness stay on north side, if you love to watch trains stay on south side.
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  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Allen C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed December 5, 2013 via mobile

Played 45's in the jukebox and danced downstairs after playing pool! Great little bar and the help does it all when it's slow like it was during the week when we came (the way we like it). Cozy little rooms with our own bathroom and all the charm of an old inn. Especially nice if you like railroad history. Great skate ski and cross-country trails. Favorite new meal-grilled romaine! Beautiful menu and great staff. Well be back for a quick getaway from our hometown of Whitefish!

  • Stayed: December 2013
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Thank MontanaLaura
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 1, 2013

We have been travelling (usually by Amtrak Empire Builder with a sleeper compartment) from Seattle/Edmonds every year or two since 1985. The place just keeps getting better with age. The staff is obviously very interested in making sure you enjoy the stay.

This trip we had a friend with us. He stayed in a lodge room and had zero complaints.

We stayed in the “JJ Caboose” which is located on the lodge side of the tracks this time. Its set up as deluxe accommodations, the footprint of a caboose obviously limits the spaciousness. JJ has full kitchen facilities and we used them a little. We would have used them more however we kept choosing to be pampered in the Izaak Walton Dining Car.

The Dining Car had a special Thanksgiving Dinner. Lots of “locals” from many miles around came to enjoy. Was great to sit in the lodge room by the fire and share experiences.

There was adequate snow to cross country ski and more on the way. Lots of fun to ski through the wood on groomed set tracks and try to identify the various tracks.

Only there five nights and we left well re-charged and relaxed.

We will definitely be back!

Room Tip: We took a quick look into the new cabins on the trail side of tracks. Fun and cozy for a couple.
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  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled with friends
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Thank Ralph U
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 16, 2013

The inn was originally built to house the workers building the railroad, so the rooms are indeed cozy. When traveling, all I personally require is that the room is clean and well maintained. Mine was and the history and character of the Izaak Walton Inn only added to my stay. I arrived via train, the Empire Builder out of Chicago. I chose the inn because it is more isolated than some of the other options around Glacier NP. I very much enjoyed the company of the other guests, conversations in the lobby sitting area which is really a gathering place in the evenings and on the front porch. The train enthusiasts love imparting their knowledge and the inn does play up the Great Northern Railroad connection. Note that the trains are as close as they appear. Being a city dweller the level of noise from the trains never disturbed me and they never blew their horns.

Dining requires a special mention. I absolutely loved every single meal I ate at the attached cafe. The menu had variety enough that while tempted to repeat something I'd enjoyed previously, I wanted to sample as many choices as I could. I was never even close to unhappy with anything.

Room Tip: If you are at all worried about the trains at night, request a room on the back of the inn.
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  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled solo
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Thank Larry60304
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 11, 2013

We love staying in Essex to take advantage of the cross country skiing/snowshoeing however the hotel rooms are soooo tiny and do over heat incredibly. Luckily our window opened and it was open all night in February! Love to sit in the lobby and read next to the fire at night. Great trails, well marked and groomed. Restaurant is just okay. We expected better for the prices but you won't go hungry :>} The convenience of hopping on Amtrak makes it a hard deal to pass up. The Valentine Day specials were disappointing both in flavor and price. There is a very nice sauna across the parking lot that is a great apres ski option

  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Dawn B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 10, 2013

We have stayed and or eaten here over a couple of owners and many years. It is sort of off the beaten track for Glacier but only 4 miles from a bridge built to let half the parks goat herd get to a mineral lick, with a great viewing platform.

The entire place is like a historic railroad museum and if you love trains and the throbbing of locomotive power units this is the place. Plus you can stay in a restored caboose, eat in view of the tracks or cross country ski. This is a great place.

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank vintagetrailer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 29, 2013

This was my second trip to Glacier National Park, and my second time staying here at the Izaak Walton Inn. The Inn is a very well kept, well run hotel with many of the comforts of home, minus telephone (including cell phone reception), TV's, computers, and even radio stations. Let’s throw in the absence of gas stations, stores, and everything else your use to in your everyday life. It’s pretty much just yourself and the Inn.

What does the Inn have? A Restaurant; good food, but expensive. A bar located in the basement with free Wi-Fi (thank God!). Car-Rentals, Sight-seeing tour pick-up / drop-off, and free shuttle to the Amtrak train station that is just a short walk down the road. The rooms are kept in excellent condition although I have to warn you, don't expect to walk into the LA Hilton. Beds are small using a standard mattress. Sink and toilets are dated, but in perfect condition. Heaters are old cast iron radiators. Mine didn't go on during my stay, then again during my September visit, 43 degrees (a dry 43) is considered summer in Montana. Bring your heavy PJ's! I enjoyed the late evenings on the porch, swinging on the bench swings. The sky is so dark at night, you can see every star, and the peaceful crisp air smells like pine. It was a welcome change from a city slicker such as myself. To add to the enjoyment; every couple hours a train may pass. Noise from the railroad is not an issue, as the trains float by at a cool 40mph. The tracks are far enough away from the Inn not to wake guests. Speaking of trains; historians and train-buffs alike will enjoys the photographs and memorabilia displayed both inside & outside the Inn. An old locomotive and cabooses have been tastefully converted into cabins, where guests can choose to stay (price a bit higher than the rooms inside the Inn). Other lodging options offered by Izaak Walton Inn include a row a small log cabins, they are in the woods across the tracks.

A couple thing's I didn't care for is the cancelation policy; if you can't make it for any reason, your [--] ([--] Out of Luck), that includes sickness, car troubles, or a delayed/cancelled Amtrak train. It’s a lot of money lost. The price of the restaurant is steep. $20 for a small plate of spaghetti on square plates is going a bit overboard. They are trying to play the "gourmet" theme, it’s a little out of place in this area. Lastly, the lack for guests to control heat (when the main burner is off) made the room chilly at night. Wasn't pleasant when you pay almost $200 per night. If they can fix these things, I would give this two-thumbs up Inn, a Three-Thumbs up! Can you do that?

Room Tip: No elevators in this Inn.
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  • Stayed: September 2013, traveled with family
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3  Thank RailfanMotels
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Izaak Walton Inn

Address: 290 Izaak Walton Inn Rd, Essex, MT 59916-9708
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Montana > Essex
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Essex
Price Range: $115 - $170 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Izaak Walton Inn 3.5*
Number of rooms: 47
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Welcome to the Izaak Walton Inn & Resort, a family-owned retreat bordering Glacier National Park, in Essex, Montana. Specializing in outdoor adventure and serious relaxation, the Inn hosts activities year round fitting any age, interest and experience level including cross country skiing and guided back country tours, hiking, horse back riding, white water rafting to slow float and larger boat excursions. No matter what time of year you choose to visit, what pace you'll set your journey to, enjoy the nature, the history, and the hospitality found at the Izaak Walton Inn. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Izaak Walton Hotel Essex
Izaak Walton Essex

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