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Glacier National Park - What to Pack

The key to successfully packing for Glacier National Park is layers. Many people don’t realize that it’s usually 20 degrees cooler up at Logan Pass than it is in town. 

Many people don’t realize that it’s usually 20 degrees cooler up at Logan Pass than it is in town.

In 2016 nearly 3 million people visited Glacier National Park so, I created this packing list to help you out. You can also view a video with more details here.

Upper Layers - pack all of these

Puff coat

Rain coat

Water wicking zip up

Work out tanks or shirts

Upper Layers for Glacier National Park

Bottom Layers - pick one type 

(my preference are workout pants) or pack all of them. Just remember not to exceed your bag weight if flying.

Hiking pants

Workout/yoga pants

Jeans

Shorts and/or hiking workout skorts

Bottom Layers for Glacier National Park

Footwear

Good socks - I prefer smartwool lightweight which you can find at sierratradingpost.com. They keep my feet from rubbing, blistering, and stinking.

Hiking boots or trail runner shoes - I prefer trail running shoes in the Summer months and hiking boots if it is wet or cold.

Water shoes if you plan to swim or wade in any lakes - Glacier National Park has rock beaches not sand

Flip flops - for walking around town or showering at your campsite

Footwear for Glacier National Park

Day Pack, Water, and Trekking Poles

Small hiking pack for your bear spray, sunscreen, water, layers, and lunch

Water bottles or a water bladder to stay hydrated

Trekking poles - these are optional based on your level of activity, hike incline, and natural stability.

What to Pack for Glacier National Park

Necessities and Accessories

Bear spray - do not go far from your car or off the beaten path without this. We have seen bears at the welcome sign while taking photos of our guests. Carry it with you and know how to use it. It costs 30-50 or you can rent it for the day from Apgar Village for around 18. You cannot take it on a plane in your carry on or checked luggage and they will ask if you have it.

Binoculars

Sunscreen

Camera

Bug spray

Sunglasses

Hat

Headband or bandanna 

chapstick

Flashlight and/or headlamp if camping

Beanie hat and lightweight gloves for early morning/late hikes or camping at night - Montana nights get chilly.

Necessities & accessories for Glacier National Park

Swimming and Food

You probably won’t swim in Glacier National Park because the water is chilly even in August. However, we have gone in before on a very hot day and our children swim at Avalanche Lake and Lake Mcdonald on the Rocky Point hike. So, we will go with the boy scout motto here and be prepared just in case. Especially given that this July has been unseasonably hot in the 90’s and 100’s.

Swimsuit

Towel - you will need if you’re camping anyways

Water shoes (from above in footwear)

One of our favorite things to do in Glacier National Park is pack a lunch and hike to a beautiful destination.

One of our favorite things to do in Glacier National Park is pack a lunch and hike to a beautiful destination. It’s always a pleasure to sit and enjoy the million dollar views while rewarding ourselves with a delicious lunch after our hike. 

Pick One

Mountain House meals with a bottle of water or two and Jetboil

Or

Peanut butter and jelly, trail mix, water, and rice krispy treat or the like

Swimwear & food for Glacier National Park

Please remember to respect nature and the park rules for your safety.

I hope this list helps you. I love seeing all of the visitors immersed in the beauty of Glacier National Park. You are going to have an amazing time. Please remember to respect nature and the park rules for your safety. Also, it’s hard to take a bad photo in Glacier National Park so you will have some frameable artwork when you return home.

Enjoy!

6 Hours in Denver with Kids
6 Hours in Denver with Kids
Jun 26, 2017