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Old 12-05-2012, 12:02 AM   #1
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Which campground to reserve in Glacier?

We are heading up to Glacier this summer and have been thinking of taking our AS 23FB. We camped last time at Fish Creek but are wondering whether this or the St. Mary campground would be better to reserve since we want to have confirmed reservations.

We tend to like more rustic/quieter campgrounds so would love to get people's opinions and even better yet some photos of the campsites if any of you have them so we can get a sense of these 2 campgrounds.

Thanks!
Sandy
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Old 12-05-2012, 12:37 AM   #2
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One more question- can you camp at Many Glacier CG witha 23 foot AS and tow vehicle (pickup truck)? Do they have sites that will fit that large of a trailer? Thanks!
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Old 12-05-2012, 05:45 AM   #3
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Many Glacier is the best campground, but you cannot reserve. There are many sites where a 23 ft AS and truck will fit...unhooked of course. Glacier has a website where they tell you at what time of the morning each campground fills up. This is quite useful for going to a campground where reservations are not available (such as Many Glacier and Two Medicine, which is also beautiful). Here's a suggestion...reserve at St. Mary's (which in my opinion is a desolate campground...fish creek is much prettier) for a day or two and drive over (about 30 minutes) to Many Glacier early in the AM and find a site...then stay there for the duration of your stay.

Don't miss the Many Glacier Hotel. They have an afternoon tour and it is well worth taking it...free. The hiking trails around Many Glacier are the best in my opinion...but don't miss going across the Going to the Sun Highway...some beautiful sights and hiking at Logan Pass.
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Old 12-05-2012, 06:08 AM   #4
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How is the West Glacier KOA? We'll be at Glacier in mid-August.
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Old 12-05-2012, 10:34 AM   #5
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Many Glacier is the best campground, but you cannot reserve. There are many sites where a 23 ft AS and truck will fit...unhooked of course. Glacier has a website where they tell you at what time of the morning each campground fills up. This is quite useful for going to a campground where reservations are not available (such as Many Glacier and Two Medicine, which is also beautiful). Here's a suggestion...reserve at St. Mary's (which in my opinion is a desolate campground...fish creek is much prettier) for a day or two and drive over (about 30 minutes) to Many Glacier early in the AM and find a site...then stay there for the duration of your stay.

Don't miss the Many Glacier Hotel. They have an afternoon tour and it is well worth taking it...free. The hiking trails around Many Glacier are the best in my opinion...but don't miss going across the Going to the Sun Highway...some beautiful sights and hiking at Logan Pass.
Thanks for the advice! Do you know how long it takes if we were to drive from the Many Glacier CG via Route 2 to the Fish Creek CG? We also want to stay on the other side of the park and just wondering how long a drive it is realistically between the two if towing our AS.

Thanks!
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Old 12-05-2012, 11:41 AM   #6
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You camped at Fish Creek with an Airstream? There are a very limited number of sites that would fit an Airstream in that campground. It's more of a tent, teardrop or popup campground. I couldn't give you a list of the barely handful of sites that might fit a travel trailer (and two or more of those are campground host sites).

We drove through Sprague and it has a few more possible sites. Hard to go that far up the road without being sure you could get into such a small campground.

Apgar, Two Medicine and Many Glacier are attractive -- all are no-reservation if I recall correctly. Being first come, first served, it might work to stay a night outside the park and get in line early to get into the park.

St. Mary's is open, unattractive and hot (considering there will be no power to run air conditioners).

There are some good discussions if you search the forums on the single word 'Glacier'.
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Old 12-05-2012, 12:59 PM   #7
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One more question- can you camp at Many Glacier CG witha 23 foot AS and tow vehicle (pickup truck)? Do they have sites that will fit that large of a trailer? Thanks!
Yes, the majority at Many Glacier will fit. Many of the sites are a shallow semicircle pull-through with trees between the pad and the campground lane -- common to a lot of nat'l parks. I set up on a site I could pull into but would never be able to pull through -- my choice -- so I had to back out of it. Most sites you could chose from are more forgiving than that.

We were at Glacier late in August with our 25'11" Safari 3 years ago. Started at Apgar about Tuesday night before Labor Day weekend -- it would fill to about 20% full each night. At that same time Fish Creek was mostly full. We moved to Many Glacier Thursday morning before any Labor Day weekend traffic might arrive and had about 5 sites to choose from at midday -- probably would have been better off getting there at 10:00AM. I can only imagine that would need to be earlier yet in high summer season. Even being late season Many Glacier filled by early afternoon every single day.

We finished up with a couple nights at Two Medicine -- less camping pressure there compared to Many Glacier. It too was nice. A bit smaller on what it offers but pretty, lake nearby, relaxing. Watch out - you can only approach Two Medicine from the south through East Glacier Village side on MT-49. MT-49 north of Two Medicine is posted closed to rigs over 25' or so total length. This is because of many sharp switchbacks in that section; theoretically it could be negotiated with a moderate tow but not with any oncoming traffic -- a certainty most of the time. So you probably should go eastward to Browning if you're changing between east and west sides of Glacier.
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Old 12-05-2012, 01:13 PM   #8
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We were there this past summer and camped at 2 Medicine campground. My goal was to get into Many Glacier CG and we spend the night before outside. But, to my dismay, a bit to far outside. I had no idea that they would fill up so early. We got there before noon and they were already full. So, the moral of the message is, if you plan to stay the night before outside the park make it close by. We were about 1.5 hrs away and that was too far. I think there is a private campground right outside the east gate so see if you can find out the name and maybe stay there. We fit our 30'er into 2 Medicine but most sites were better suited to smaller units. We enjoyed it there and although it was busy it was nice and quiet enough for us.
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Old 12-05-2012, 02:33 PM   #9
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Don't overlook the private campgrounds just outside of the park on the eastside or those as far south as Co Falls, MT on the west side. I spent several seasons as an LE ranger in Glacier NP and many folks reported very favorably on the private CGs that they had visited - as well as the NPS CGs.
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Old 12-05-2012, 02:41 PM   #10
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There are several very nice campgrounds in Columbia Falls, MT, just outside the west entrance. They are not cheap, but would accommodate a trailer easily and you could then drive in to the park during the day.

Columbia Falls is also a really nice community, with all the shopping you would need before and after a trip into the wilds of Glacier.

Being small, and with friends with a truck camper, we had no problem last summer finding sites early mornings in the first come, first serve campgrounds within the park. There were also trailers and some motor homes doing the same thing, successfully, although those larger sites are more limited.

Glacier is a spectacularly beautiful place. You'll love it.


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Old 12-05-2012, 03:00 PM   #11
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http://tabadabadoo.wordpress.com/201...o-so-worth-it/


My view from a park just outside the south end if the park. "spruce park on the river" in Kalispell, MT. I had a 16ft T@B then, so got a water spot.
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Old 12-05-2012, 03:01 PM   #12
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Old 12-05-2012, 03:03 PM   #13
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The view the other direction.


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Breakfast view.
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Old 12-05-2012, 03:32 PM   #14
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No doubt, breakfast was a much better perspective!
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