Panoramic view of North Circle Backpacking Trail in Montana, USA
Wildflowers along the trail in Glacier National Park, Montana, USA

backpacking trails in Glacier National Park

Region in Montana, United States
Glacier National Park Backpacking Map

Backpacking in Glacier National Park is spectacular, with some of the best scenery in North America. We’ve shared some of our favourite backpacking routes here, and this includes some of the classic trails in Glacier National Park.

Whether you are looking for a weekend trip, or planning on booking an epic, week-long backpack, you’ll need to get permits. While there are often walk-in permits, it is preferable to reserve your permits in advance. The NPS website for Glacier National Park has great information about how to use their modified lottery system. We’ve used this system, and found the lottery system to function very well.

So start planning your next backpacking trip to Montana’s Glacier National Park!

Best Backpack Trails in Glacier National Park

  1. North Circle Trail (89.3km, 4026m, 4-6 days): This is the backpack in Glacier. Though it’s hard to get a permit, this is an incredible route, providing enormous variety and some of the best views in Glacier National Park.
  2. Pitamakan-Dawson Loop (28.4km, 958m, 1-3 days): Another great backpack in Glacier National Park, this route can be done in a single day, but it’s much more fun to do it as an overnight backpack.
  3. Boulder Pass (39.6km, 968m, 2-3 days): Another great backpacking trail in Glacier National Park, this one goes into a more remote part of Glacier. This can be done in 2 long days, but is best done as a 3-day trip.
  4. Extended Highline (61.8km, 3035m, 3-4 days): While many hikers enjoy the lower highline hike, from Logan Pass to Granite Park Chalet, this trail continues along the Upper Highline trail, home to some of the best views in Glacier. It’s very hard to get permits for this route, however it is spectacular if you do get them.
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The best backpacking trails in Glacier National Park

Wildflowers along North Circle Backpacking Trail in Glacier National Park

01. North Circle
Difficulty

89.3km 4,026m 5-6 days

The North Circle Loop in Glacier National Park is a strenuous and rewarding backpacking trip… Read More

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Beautiful lake on Pitamakan Dawson Loop Backpacking Trail in Glacier National Park

02. Pitamakan Dawson Loop
Difficulty

28.4km 958m 1-3 days

The Pitamakan-Dawson Loop is a strenuous and rewarding backpacking trip on the east side of… Read More

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Great scenery on Boulder Pass Backpacking Trail in Glacier National Park

03. Boulder Pass
Difficulty

39.6km 968m 2-3 days

Backpacking through this northern section of Glacier National Park is a very wild experience. With… Read More

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Grinnell Glacier views from Highline backpacking trail in Glacier National Park, Montana

04. The Highline
Difficulty

61.8km 3,035m 4-5 days

The Highline is one of Glacier’s legendary hikes along the Continental Divide, and this backpacking… Read More

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Only 4 backpacking trails?

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