Glacier National Park in Canada is not to be confused with the park in Montana of the same name. It stands alone as a place of unspoiled scenery. Take a look at some facts about Glacier and the surrounding area.
Nearby Cities with Budget Rooms
Revelstoke is 72 km. (44 mi.) to the east and offers a variety of rooms and restaurants.
Camping and Lodge Facilities
Within the park, the only rooms available are at the Glacier Lodge at Rogers Pass. Glacier has three campgrounds within its boundaries: Illecillewaet opens in late June with sites and flush toilets. Loop Brook and Mt. Sir Donald both open July 1.
Back country permits cost $9.80. If you'll be in the area for more than a week, an annual permit is available for $68.70.
Top Free Attractions in the Park
Glacier is less visited than its neighbors to the east, so much of the attraction here involves back country experiences like hiking, fishing and camping.
Glacier and its western neighbor Mt. Revelstoke National Park are in the Columbia Mountains, an area distinct from the Rockies to the east. Because these mountains are the highest between here and the Pacific Coast, you find temperate rain forests and areas with nearly permanent snow cover. The trails here tend to attract more experienced hikers and campers. Be sure to inquire locally at the start of your visit to get updated conditions for trails and mountains. Natural threats such as avalanches are reality here.
Parking and Transportation
Highway 1, also known as the Trans Canada Highway, crosses Glacier N.P. Near the middle of the park, Rogers Pass Discovery Centre is open year-round except Dec. 25. and the month of November. Everything else is closed in winter due to heavy snowfall (depths routinely reach seven feet in places). Keep in mind that unlike its national park neighbors immediately to the east, Glacier is on Pacific Time.
Canadian national park entry fees do not apply to people simply driving across a park with no intent of stopping. But when you actually visit the overlooks, hiking trails and other attractions, adults pay a daily fee of $9.80 CAD, seniors $8.30 and youth $4.90. This adds up quickly, but fortunately you can pay a fixed fee for your entire carload of $19.60 per day. The fee can be paid at visitor centers, and for convenience it's best to pay for all the days at once and display your receipt on the windshield.
These fees also entitle you to enter any other Canadian national park during the time of validation. Those who try to avoid paying the fees become subject to big fines, so don't try it.
Nearest Major Airports
Rogers Pass Interpretive Center is about 340 km. (208 mi.) from Calgary International Airport. There are small commercial airports to the west at Kamloops and Kelowna, British Columbia.
Budget Airlines to Shop
WestJet is a budget airline serving Calgary.
For more information, visit Glacier National Park within the Parks Canada Web site.