Paddle and Pedal: Raft and Bike Glacier National Park 2019-05-22T14:17:23-07:00

Raft and Bike Glacier National Park:

Full Day Paddle and Pedal Adventure — Spring Only!

Morning: Paddle Glacier

On this thrilling Glacier Park rafting experience, everyone gets a “window seat” and has the option to become part of the paddling crew, if they wish!

Difficulty: Moderate

Time:  9:45 AM meeting time, 10:15 AM launch, May 15 – mid-late June

Trip Duration: Approximately 2.5 hours

Minimum Age: 10

Rafting By Morning

Start off your Raft and Bike Glacier National Park adventure with the Paddle portion of the day! Meet at our office at 9:45am for a 10:15am whitewater rafting departure.

Enjoy our exclusive Sport Half Day Glacier National Park whitewater rafting trip on the Middle Fork of the Flathead River.  Why is our Sport trip special? The small number of rafters– not more than 9 — allows for a more intimate experience with the river and a lighter, uncrowded boat. Paddle and become part of the crew that maneuvers the raft through the 9 named rapids by following the simple commands of the guide. Or, if you’d rather sit back and relax on this federally protected Wild and Scenic River, that’s great, too! The trip winds about 8 miles through the John F. Stevens Canyon. The rapids are typically rated class II and III, making for a fun and splashy whitewater rafting adventure!

Raft and Bike Glacier: The More You Know

Be sure to wear clothes you won’t mind getting wet.  See our Packing List – Day Trips page for more information about what you will need for the trip.

Arrive at 30 minutes prior to departure to meet your guide and get fitted for lifejackets, helmets, and any other necessary equipment. If you have an epi-pen or other medication, your guide can stow it safely for you in a dry bag. Next, take a short bus ride — approximately 20 minutes — to the river put in. Your guide will launch the boat there and you’ll be floating down the stunning Wild and Scenic Middle Fork of the Flathead River!

The trip starts off on a mellow section of the river, giving you plenty of time to learn to paddle and to adjust to being on the water. The rapids come towards the end of the trip, and photographs of each boat are taken in the rapid called Bonecrusher. Float under Glacier National Park’s historic Belton Bridge towards the end of the trip. Your guide will take the raft out of the water in West Glacier. From there, it’s a 5 minute bus ride back to where you started.

The length of the trip depends on the river flow. In May and June, trips typically last about 2.5 hours.

No experience necessary.

No maximum weight, but must be able to buckle a 58″ chest life jacket.

Trips depart rain or shine.

Meeting Notes

Please check into our office 30 minutes prior to the departure time, at 9:45 AM. Departure is at 10:15 AM.  We are located 1.5 miles west of West Glacier on Highway 2. Look for our Glacier Guides and Montana Raft sign on the north side of the highway, between mile marker 151 and 152. You’ll see our blue bus, too!

Safety First

Safety is always the #1 priority. Guides undergo training in river rescue techniques, first aid, and more. Many guides return year after year. If conditions call for wetsuits and river shoes, or if you would prefer to wear splash gear, it is always available at no extra cost. Helmets are mandatory.

Afternoon: Pedal Glacier

biking Glacier National Park

Biking the Going to the Sun Road with our interpretive guides is a bucket list experience!

Difficulty: Moderate

Time:  1:30 meeting time, 2:00 p.m. departure, May 15 – mid-late June

Trip Duration: Typically 4 – 5 hours, depending on road conditions and availability.

Biking By Afternoon

Guided biking in Glacier National Park is offered from May 15 through mid-late June. During this time, the alpine section of the Going to the Sun Road is closed to vehicles but open to hiker-biker traffic. Biking the Sun Road is the ultimate spring adventure in Glacier! We like to take advantage of the afternoon warmth and the beautiful light. This departure also typically ensures that the plow crew is finished up with work for the day. That way, we can bike as far as possible. Along the way, we’ll enjoy a delicious, hearty sack dinner.

What If The Going-to-the-Sun Road Is Closed To Hiker/Biker Traffic?

Keep in mind that around here, we joke that we have two seasons, winter and road construction.  When roads are closed or are in rough shape for biking, we may reroute our trip to another area of Glacier National Park.  This may be an area which is open to vehicle traffic, such as the Camas Road. Alternatively, it may involve involve a van shuttle to a road on Glacier’s stunning east side, which will be several hours long. We’ll always keep you aware of your options.

Afternoon Biking the Going to the Sun Road Itinerary

1:00 PM – Return from paddling the whitewater section of the Middle Fork of the Flathead River! Pick up your delicious, hearty sack lunch from the office and head out to our shaded pavilion to savor it.

1:30 PM – Check back into the office to prepare for your biking tour! Meet you guide and get fitted for a bike and helmet.

2:00 PM – Depart for your bike tour. Typically, we bike on the iconic Going to the Sun Road, from the Avalanche trailhead up into the alpine section, but please see above.

7:30 PM – Return to Glacier Guides and Montana Raft.

Guided Biking in Glacier National Park Trip Overview

Distance: About 15 miles, depending on road conditions. 

Elevation Gain: 3,000 feet

Destination: Logan Pass, depending on road conditions.

What’s Included

  • Our highly trained, friendly, and entertaining guides.
  • Transportation to and from Glacier Guides and Montana Raft’s main office.
  • Men’s Raleigh Cadent 3 / Women’s Raleigh Alysa 3 bicycle with front fender and rear rack — small, medium, large, and extra-large frame choices.
  • Children’s Raleigh Alysa 24 or Rowdy bicycle — 20″ and 24″ frame choices. Minimum age is 10.
  • Adults – Diamondback Helmet. Kids – Ultralight Pryme Helmet.
  • Homemade, locally sourced, largely organic sack dinner.

Bike Glacier: What to Bring

Prepare for a Glacier bike tour just as you would for a hike. On a nice day, shorts will work just fine! On a cold day, you’ll want warm, breathable layers. Keep in mind that rain and snow are always possible in the mountains. Check out our Glacier National Park Day Trips Packing List.

Age Limits

Because this Paddle and Pedal adventure occurs in the spring, when the river flows in the whitewater section are typically higher, the minimum age is 10. At other times of the year, the minimum age for rafting are likely to be lower lower. It depends on the river flows and whether the trip is for a scenic float or a whitewater trip. Please call the office to inquire: 406-387-5555 or e-mail info@glacierguides.com

Biking Glacier FAQ

Do I need bear spray? What if the Going to the Sun Road is closed? Find answers to all your biking questions here.

Dates and Pricing

Dates: Daily between May 15 – mid to late June. When the Going to the Sun Road opens for the year, this combination experience will close.

Price Adult: $175 – Lunch and Dinner is included and Whitewater Trip is offered at 10% off in this Combination Experience
Price Child (12 – 10): $165
Additional Fees: $20 park entrance fee ($35 for family — see entrance fee details here), 7% River User Fee and gratuity for guide not included.

Reservations required in advance.

Meeting Notes

Guests should call our office the day prior to departure to check in: 406-387-5555. The day of the trip please arrive at our office by 9:00 AM. We are located 1.5 miles west of West Glacier on U.S. Highway 2. Look for our Glacier Guides and Montana Raft sign on the north side of the highway between mile marker 151 and 152. Our property is just off the highway, tucked in the trees. When you see our sign turn to the north and you will see us shortly thereafter. Detailed directions and maps are available here.

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