Friday, July 31, 2009

Glacier National Park

Later today I will be leaving for one of my favorite national parks - Glacier National Park in Montana.

Glacier has a very extensive backcountry trail system. I have travelled most of its trails over several visits and have always come back impressed. I can still remember my very first backpacks into Cracker Lake and Gunsight Lake, as well as my last extended backpack over Boulder Pass (pictured above) and into Hole in the Wall. Memories from these trips are plentiful!

For this trip, we will be doing the North Circle - or Highline Trail. We will begin our 7 day backpack at Logan Pass and hike the Garden Wall to Granite Park. We will then continue on to Fifty Mountain before starting the most interesting part of our trip - climbing over the shoulder of Mt. Kipp and descending the Chaney Glacier to Sue Lake Bench for a remote backcountry camp. From there it is on to Stoney Indian Pass before descending the Belly River Valley to Elizabeth Lake. Finally, we will climb to Ptarmigan Tunnel and end our trip at Many Glacier. We also hope to summit a handful of peaks along the way.

I will be joined by my friend Greg, whom I met last year during a climb of Bonanza Peak in the North Cascades. Greg and I really hit it off on that trip and I am excited to be able to spend time with him again while doing what we love - hiking and climbing!

Wish us luck, and hopefully I will be able to share accounts of a successful trip upon our return!

Edit: The Highline Trail is a mere section of the North Circle, which is also comprised of the Stony Indian Pass Trail, Ptarmigan Trail and Garden Wall Trail.

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