Wildflower Workshop | 2-Day Guided Educational Hike

Glacier National Park is a wildflower aficionado's paradise

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Distance

6 Miles

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Elevation Gain

1,200 Feet

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Difficulty

Moderate

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Cost Per Person

$495

Hike Overview

Glacier National Park is a wildflower aficionado’s paradise. With nearly 1,000 species of wildflowers located within its boundaries, Glacier provides an abundance of beauty and learning opportunities for those who know where to look. In this course, participants will have the opportunity to identify plants in the diverse biomes of Glacier National Park. At the end of the class, students should be able to identify many common wildflowers, recognize at least seven plant families by sight, list plant adaptations, and be able to compare plant limiting factors for habitats that were viewed.

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Wildflower Workshop | 2-Day Guided Educational Hike

Hike Overview Continued

Instructor: Janet Paul Bones

With nearly 1,000 species of wildflowers located within its boundaries, Glacier National Park provides an abundance of beauty and learning opportunities for those who know where to look. In this Glacier Institute course, participants will have the opportunity to identify plants in the diverse biomes of Glacier National Park. At the end of the class, students should be able to identify many common wildflowers, recognize at least seven plant families by sight, list plant adaptations, and be able to compare plant limiting factors for habitats that were viewed. The majority of the class will be taught as hands-on in the field in a non-technical manner. Botanical terms will be discussed as they are observed while identifying plants. Both common and scientific names as listed in Peter Lesica’s Flora of Glacier National Park, 2002, will be used. This Glacier Institute course is for anyone who enjoys observing wildflowers and learning about plant adaptations which enable them to survive.

Meeting Place: Glacier Institute Field Camp

Itinerary: (subject to change due to weather, trail closures, and blooming season)

Day 1: We will meet at Glacier Institute Field Camp at 7 a.m. for an introduction and orientation to the workshop. Then we will travel by Glacier Institute van around the south edge of the park to the Two Medicine Valley. We will search for flowers along the lower section of the Scenic Point Trail or the Aster Park Trail depending upon the flower display. Returning to Field Camp by 4 p.m.

Day 2: We will meet at 7 a.m. at Glacier Institute Field Camp and load into our vehicles for a drive over Logan Pass to Sun Point along St. Mary Lake. From Sun Point we will walk along the St. Mary Falls trail as far as Baring Falls, then up to the Sun Road at Sunrift Gorge. From here we will continue as far as time allows along the Siyeh Pass Trail before returning to the bus and back to camp by 4 p.m., course will not be cancelled due to weather.

Food: The following meals are included: lunch on Day 1 through lunch on Day 2.

Accommodations: One night of lodging is included into the course fee. Our student cabins are basic, hostel-style cabins with 5 single beds, bedside lights, and electrical outlets. Students should be prepared to share a cabin with up to 4 other people. Cabins are separated by gender. Couples may be paired up in the event there is ample space. We provide a bottom sheet for your bed as well as a pillow and pillowcase, but please bring a warm sleeping bag. Be sure to bring a flashlight or headlamp for night trips to the bathroom.

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 you register. Most importantly, bring comfortable hiking shoes, at least 1-2 liter water bottle, backpack, rain gear, hat, and sunscreen. Binoculars and hand lenses are also highly recommended. A simple identification key will be provided for use during the workshop as well as a variety of plant books. A small notebook is helpful as are any of your favorite plant identification books. Participants may wish to have a copy of Shannon Kimball’s Wildflowers of Glacier National Park and Surrounding Areas to use during the class.

Physical Requirements: Moderate Difficulty. We will be hiking up to six miles round trip and up to 1,200 feet of elevation change. Frequent breaks will be taken along the trail.

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What to Expect On Your Wildflower Workshop | 2-Day Course

We will spend the day in the field identifying wildflowers growing Glacier. Hiking distance may cover up to 6 miles and up to 1,200 feet of elevation change. Frequent breaks will be taken along the trail.

Hike Details

  • This program meets at Glacier Institute Field Camp, West Glacier.
  • Instructor: Janet Paul Bones
  • The program will begin at 7 a.m. on day 1 and end at 4 p.m. on the final day. Please arrive 15 minutes early.
  • Hiking distance covers up to 6 miles with up to 1,200 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