There are so many places and things to see and do when on vacation in Glacier Country! If you are visiting the area for your first time, you will undoubtedly have many things on your personal “to do” list. If you need ideas, check out our Glacier National Park, Other Glacier Country Activities and More Area Attractions pages. However, if you are looking for some suggestions of things to do from someone who has “been there, done that”, here are 10 of our personal favorite activities whenever we are staying at the cabin.
The list is in no particular order.
1. Walk Along the South Shore of Lake McDonald
The south shore of Lake McDonald within Glacier National Park is probably one of the most photographed places within the park, and for good reason. It’s “mood” seems to change with the weather and seasons, so you will see something new every time you visit.
2. Walk a Forest Trail
Even if you aren’t into hiking, you can take an easy walk along a forest trail in the area and soak in the natural beauty. Our favorite trail, pictured above, runs along the western side of Duck Lake in the Forest Service land and leads to Spoon Lake.
3. Enjoy a Drink and the View at the Historic Lake McDonald Lodge
Lake McDonald Lodge, built in 1913-1914, is a rustic, historic Swiss Chalet style lodge on the eastern shore of Lake McDonald inside Glacier National Park. Step back in time as you walk through the lobby to the lounge that overlooks Lake McDonald, order a beverage and either sit by a window in the bar or walk outside, take a seat and enjoy the spectacular scenery.
4. Drive Going-To-The-Sun Road to Logan Pass
The scenery along Going-to-the-Sun Road is always spectacular, and you never know what wildlife you might spot along the way. Incidentally, the road is aptly named. It truly feels like you are “going to the sun” as you drive up it!
5. Do Nothing (just relax)
One of our all time favorite activities is getting in some “deck time” at the cabin! Stoke up a fire in the chiminea (outdoor fireplace), kick back with a beverage and watch the world go by. Ahhhhhh….
6. Check Out the Local Brewpubs
We love microbrew beer, and Glacier Country is home to several amazing brewpubs. Flathead Lake Brewing has facilities you can down a pint at in both Woods Bay and Bigfork; Tamarack Brewing has a great pub and restaurant in Lakeside; Kalispell Brewing, located in an old car dealership in downtown Kalispell, has some good beers and a nice rooftop patio. Whitefish has two breweries: Bonsai Brewing Project has some amazing beers and a great outdoor area to sit and enjoy the scenery, and Great Northern Brewing is the area’s first and most famous microbrewery. Then there is our local favorite, Backslope Brewing in Columbia Falls (a mere 10 minutes from the cabin), which has some really tasty beers and good pub food, too!
7. Polebridge Mercantile & Northern Lights Saloon
Drive 45 minutes north of the cabin up a dirt road and you will find the town of Polebridge. Located 22 miles from the Canadian border, Polebridge consists of a few houses, the Northern Lights Saloon (which also serves dinner during the summer), a hostel/ranch, and the Polebridge Mercantile, the most famous place in the area. Polebridge has no electricity; all power is either solar or propane generated. Needless to say, there is also no cell service or WiFi! The Mercantile is famous for its baked goods, and the town of Polebridge is renowned for its grizzly bear population. If you happen to be in the area during July 4, be sure to catch the Polebridge 4th of July parade! It’s the best!
8. Dine Out in Whitefish
Whenever we want to go out to eat, we almost always end up in the town of Whitefish, MT. There are several dining options to chose from, ranging from bar/pub food to upscale, and everything in between. If you want a good burger, go to the Bulldog Saloon! Craving Italian? We recommend Ciao Mambo.
9. Shop Along the Main Street in Whitefish
The resort town of Whitefish has lots of quaint shops lining its main street. It’s fun to wander through them to see what treasures you might find. Be sure to stop in and quench your thirst at one or more of the local saloons as you work your way up and down the street!
10. Taste the Offerings at the Local Distilleries