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    The Highline

    This reflects the 10Adventures difficulty rating for each route. We aim to keep ratings consistent across regions.
    Very Hard
    This reflects the estimated time the majority of users will take on this trail. If you are slower, add time to the top-end figure. If you are fast, then you may complete this route faster than this time range.
    This reflects the return distance of this route as measured by the GPS file.
    21.4 km
    This reflects the total elevation gained throughout this route as measured by the GPS file. This includes all ascents and descents, and is higher than what is quoted in most route guides, which simply measure the distance between the starting-point and high-point of the route.
    705 m
    User Ratings
    These ratings are completed by users who have completed this trail and not subject to reviews by 10Adventures.
    Overall Rating
    This is the average user-submitted overall rating on a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being the highest.
    Physical Difficulty
    This is the average user-submitted rating on the physical difficulty of this route. In general, green is beginner, blue is intermediate, black is advanced/most difficult and double-black is expert-only. It is recommended that users build up to black and double-black routes.
    Intermediate (Square)
    Suitable for intermediates who are ready for a little bit more adventure.
    Technical Difficulty
    This is the average user-submitted rating on the technical difficulty of this route. In general, green is beginner, blue is intermediate, black is advanced/most difficult and double-black is expert-only. It is recommended that users build up to black and double-black routes.
    Easy (Circle)
    Suitable for beginners, families, young children, and those looking for a casual adventure.
    Read Reviews
    Directions to Trailhead
    Panoramic views from the Highline hike in Glacier National Park, Montana

    The Highline is one of Glacier’s legendary hikes along the Continental Divide. Thanks to the efficient free buses along the Going-to-the-Sun Road, you can take a bus back to your car from the trail – though make sure you know when the last bus is!

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    Route Description for The Highline

    From the Logan Pass Visitor Centre, cross the parking lot and the road towards the Highline Trail sign. This hike is well signposted throughout. At first the trail passes through an alpine meadow and then hugs a rocky cliff as you hike near the road. Luckily for those scared of hikes, a wire handrail has been installed. With views across the valley of Mt. Oberlin, the occasional sound of a car is mitigated. Thankfully, after a couple kilometers of flat hiking you’ll distance yourself nicely from the road and continue to contour along the right side of the valley. You will pass over many streams.

    Because you start so high up, every moment of the hike has wonderful views. As you continue you can see Heaven’s Peak in the distance across the valley, and the views get continuously better into the cirque between Mt. Cannon and Clements Mountain. You can look to the right and see the trail approach a rocky knoll, known as Haystack Butte.

    Finally, after 5.0 km you will start the first of two climbs of the day, up to Haystack Pass, reached at 5.6 km. Completely devoid of any trees, this climb gives you stunning views directly into the aforementioned cirque as you are surrounded by gorgeous wildflowers. Usually this point in the hike many people who just wanted to do part of the trail have turned back, providing you with a little more seclusion as you continue forth.

    Past Haystack Pass the trail continues flat below The Garden Wall. The views remain stunning and the grade remains flat. You can finally look down a gorgeous valley to the massive McDonald Lake and get even more impressive views of Heavens Peak. Continuing along the trail, the Granite Park Chalet comes into view, with a stunning backdrop of snow-capped mountains.

    After 10.8 km there is a junction, with the right-hand path leading back to the Garden Wall, overlooking the Grinnell Glacier. This 1.0 km trail has an extremely steep climb, rising almost 300 m, though the view down to Upper Grinnell Lake and Grinnell Glacier are worth the climb. There are some Big Horned Sheep who like to hang out here and may follow you up – please don’t feed them!

    Hiking another 1.3 km from the junction you will find yourself at the Granite Park Chalet. Built by the Great Northern Railway in 1914, this Chalet was built mimicking the numerous “refugios” found in the European Alps, allowing for relatively comfortable backcountry housing. Listed as a National Historic Site you can still reserve a room here, however it is more basic than the other eight built. If you are just there for the day, however, they do sell chocolate bars at a remarkably cheap rate. If you want to stay here book well in advance and bring your own food.

    From the Chalet, go down the Loop Trail another 6.5 km down to The Loop on the Going-to-the-Sun Road. A 2003 wildfire burned the previously dense forest of the Loop Trail, giving hiking stunning views of Heavens Peak as you descend. On our most notable hike, we were greeted near the end of the trail by an adolescent brown bear, completely at ease with us while he searched for his pre-dinner snack – thankfully not hikers, but some tender roots.

    At the end of the trail you come to the road. Cross the road and go along the right-hand side to find the shuttle stop. The shuttle comes every 15-20 minutes and will return you to Logan Pass, or to wherever you parked your car.

    Find more epic hikes in Glacier National Park

    2024 Highline Trail Hike

    For those planning to hike the Highline Trail in Glacier National Park in 2024, here are some important advisories to consider. 2024 is expected to be very busy, especially during the summer months, therefore arriving early at the Logan Pass Visitor Center is recommended as the parking area fills up quickly, especially after 8 AM (and even earlier on weekends). Consider using the park shuttle service if parking at Logan Pass is full, as it’s the busiest part of the park. Be aware of ongoing road and infrastructure projects within the park that might affect travel times and access to trailheads. Moreover, in 2024 the Glacier National Park still requires reservations for vehicle entry on Going-to-the-Sun Road, where Logan Pass is located, during the peak season from late May through early September which needs to be reserved in advance.

    Insider Hints for The Highline

    • Start early to ensure you don’t miss the last bus back to Logan Pass. The friendly rangers can give you that information, as well it is on the bus stops.
    • If you can, spend a night at Granite Park Chalet, but bring your own food!

    Getting to the The Highline Trailhead

    Drive the Going-To-The-Sun Road towards the famous Logan Pass and park in front of the Visitor Centre. The parking lot fills up very quickly, so plan to either arrive before 8:30am or park elsewhere and take one of the many shuttles to pass.

    Route Information

    • When to do

      June through September

    • Backcountry Campsites


    • Toilets

      Trailhead, Chalet

    • Family friendly


    • Route Signage


    • Crowd Levels


    • Route Type

      One Way

    The Highline Elevation Graph

    Weather Forecast

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    The Highline Reviews

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