Glacier’s Grazers | Guided Educational Hike

Glacier Park is full of wild animals, there are 6 ungulate species

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Distance

3 Miles

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Elevation Gain

800 Feet

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Difficulty

Moderate

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Cost Per Person

$100

Hike Overview

During this one-day course, we will discuss in detail the ungulates of Glacier National Park, with emphasis on life histories, distribution, habitat requirements, and predator-prey relationships. There are six ungulate species now in the park, and three more that were historically present. Management practices, including possible reintroductions, will also be discussed. Most of the day will be spent driving and hiking in ungulate habitat.

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Glacier’s Grazers | Guided Educational Hike

Hike Overview Continued

Instructor: Dave Shea

During this one-day course, we will discuss in detail the ungulates of Glacier National Park, with emphasis on life histories, distribution, habitat requirements, and predator-prey relationships. There are six ungulate species now in the park, and three more that were historically present. Management practices, including possible reintroductions, will also be discussed. Most of the day will be spent driving and hiking in ungulate habitat. We will also talk about flora, geology, birds, and cultural and fire histories along the way, and how these affect ungulate habitats.

Meeting Place: Glacier Institute Field Camp

Itinerary: (subject to change due to trail closures and weather)
The day will start at 7 a.m., with a general overview of Glacier National Park’s ungulates. We will include skulls, horns and antlers, animal track castings, and a slideshow presentation. Depending on restrictions, we may travel up the North Fork River by bus towards Polebridge and take a 2.5 mile hike (round-trip) into Hidden Meadow, and also explore deer and elk winter range in Big Prairie. Alternatively, we may drive to the Many Glacier Valley to view mountain sheep and goats on Altyn Peak. The course will wrap up by 4 p.m. and will not be cancelled due to weather.

Food: Please bring a trail lunch, plenty of water and snacks for the day.

Park Entrance Fees: Participants are responsible for purchasing their park entry passes prior to the course. These can be purchased online at: https://www.recreation.gov/sitepass/74280

Equipment: You will receive a Glacier Institute Field Camp gear list once your register. Most importantly, bring comfortable hiking shoes, at least 1-2-liter water bottle, sack lunch, backpack, rain gear, hat, and sunscreen. Weather can be varied so please be prepared with appropriate clothing, with warm layers. Please bring binoculars, a field notebook, and a camera if you wish. Your favorite field guides are helpful and if you have a spotting scope, you are welcome to bring it along.

Physical Requirements: Moderate difficulty; on-trail or off-trail hikes in Glacier National Park will be up to 3 miles and/or 800 feet elevation gain.

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What to Expect On Your Glacier's Grazers | One Day Guided Hike

We will spend the day learning about Glacier’s ungulates while hiking in the North Fork Valley. The hike will be up to 3 miles, on-trail or off-trail, with up to 800 feet elevation change.

Hike Details

  • This program meets at Glacier Institute Field Camp, West Glacier
  • Instructor: Dave Shea
  • The program will begin 7 a.m. and ends at 4 p.m. Please arrive 15 minutes early.
  • Hiking distance covers lup to 3 miles with up to 800 feet elevation change.
  • On-site parking available.
  • There is a maximum number of 13 hikers per trip.
  • This program has a minimum guest count of 3 people. In the unlikely case we don’t reach that number, you will be notified prior to the event.

What to Bring

Please remember that weather in NW Montana during all seasons can change quickly from warm and sunny to freezing at any time of the year. We recommend checking the weather prior to your trip. Please also check your course information sheet for specific gear requirements in addition to those listed below.

  • Lightweight hiking boots or a sturdy pair of hiking shoes
  • 2 liter sized water bottle or Camelback
  • Day Pack with plastic bag liner or cover
  • Waterproof rain jacket and pants
  • Sunhat, sunglasses, sunscreen, insect repellant & lip balm
  • Camera (optional)
  • Trekking poles, if you like to use them for hiking (optional)
  • Binoculars (optional)
  • Field Notebook notes and sketches

Download complete checklist here