FAQ: General Biking Glacier National Park

We love biking. Better for the Earth, better for your health, and a whole lot more fun than driving! We guide biking in Glacier National Park, and rent bikes too, so we know the answers to the most frequently asked questions about biking in our area of the world. Here you go!

#1 I want to ride the Going to the Sun Road in the spring, before it opens to cars. What do I need to know?

We’ve got everything you need to know about this specific, bucket list activity here.

If you’d like to ride the Sun Road in the summer/fall, when it is fully open to cars, please read up on Glacier’s regulations here. There are times you are not allowed to be on the road with a bike.

#2 I want to ride on the west side of Glacier, but not on the Going-to-the-Sun Road. What can you tell me?

Glacier Park is mostly about road biking, especially on the Going to the Sun Road. But there are other places to consider, too:

  • Camas Road – paved
  • Headquarters-to-Apgar Bike Path – paved
  • Road to Kintla – dirt
  • Road to Bowman – dirt
  • Inside North Fork Road – dirt
  • Outside North Fork Road – dirt

Remember, check Glacier Park road status before you go!

#3 I want to ride on the east side of Glacier National Park. What can you tell me?

  • Chief Mountain Highway – paved
  • Many Glacier Road – paved, but under construction and very rough
  • Going-to-the-Sun Road, east side – paved
  • Cut Bank Road – dirt
  • Two Medicine Road – paved
  • Looking Glass Road – paved
  • Duck Lake Road – paved
  • Star School Road – paved

Remember, check Glacier Park road status before you go!

biking east side of Going to the Sun Road
Biking the east side of Going to the Sun Road – almost to Logan Pass! Guide Tom Matelich

#4 I want to go mountain biking in Glacier. Where can I go?

Glacier isn’t a mountain biker’s park, but there are some great dirt roads to ride here. We like the roads to Kintla Lake from Polebridge, and to the old Flathead Ranger Station. We also like the route from Fish Creek to Polebridge, a dirt road, called the Inside North Fork Road. This route is typically at least partially closed to vehicles, and offers a fun dirt surface to play on. Please ride responsibly and stay off Glacier’s dirt roads if wet.

Our bikes and e-bikes are not built for these roads, so you would need to bring your own mountain bike or rent a mountain bike from another outfitter.

#5 I want to go mountain biking, but not in Glacier. Where can I go?

You’ve got lots of options! Here’s a great list of area mountain biking available outside of Glacier.

#6 Where can I rent bikes and e-bikes?

You can rent regular bikes or e-bikes at our office. Then, you have two options. One, you can rent a bike carrier and drive into the park. Two, you can also skip the hassles of driving and parking and instead bike directly from our office. We are located on the Gateway to Glacier Bike Path, which connects to the Going-to-the-Sun Road two miles east of our office. If you leave from our office and bike to Logan Pass, you will ride a total of about 70 miles.

A fun option is to ride from our office to Coram, on the Gateway to Glacier Bike Path, and visit the Glacier Distilling Co., the Stonefly Bar, and the Amazing Fun Center! You can get great pizza at the Glacier Grille and more refined options at Josephine’s.

#7 What are the restrictions on biking in Glacier National Park?

Check the park’s biking page for the latest rules and regulations here.

biking Glacier - Wild Goose Island Overlook
Biking to Wild Goose Island Overlook, on the east side. Guide Tom Matelich

#8 What should I bring with me?

A spare tube, tire pump, and basic bike tools are essential! You should also bring bear spray, water, food, and layers — just like you would if you were hiking. Remember that no matter how warm and sunny the forecast might be, the roads might be wet from melting snow, and you’re likely to get wet, too.

Click here for our Glacier National Park Day Trips Packing List – Biking.

#9 What about bears?

Bears typically begin emerging from their dens in April, so you should definitely have bear spray, wherever you’re biking. We recommend stashing a can in one of the water bottle carriers on your bike — it’s always best practice to keep it handy! Just like with hiking, make noise and let all wildlife, not just bears, know that you’re around.

If you’re on a guided biking tour with us, your guide will have bear spray.

#10 Can my dog go, too?

Sorry, no. During the spring, pets are not permitted past the road closure gates, which are typically at Lake McDonald Lodge or Avalanche on the West Side, and at Rising Sun on the east. You can read more about pets in Glacier here. Whether you’re biking the Going-to-the-Sun Road or some other road in the park, you can check road status here.

Bonus: How long is the bike ride to Logan Pass?

From the west side of the park:

  • Mile –2 – Glacier Guides and Montana Raft
  • Mile 0 – West Glacier, Montana (3,215’ elevation)
  • Mile 1 – West Glacier Entrance Station
  • Mile 11 – Lake McDonald Lodge (3,153’)
  • Mile 12 – McDonald Falls, McDonald Creek
  • Mile 16 – Avalanche Trailhead/Trail of the Cedars (3,301’)
  • Mile 17 – Red Rock Point
  • Mile 23 – West Side Tunnel
  • Mile 24 – The Loop (4,400’)
  • Mile 27 – Bird Woman Falls Overlook
  • Mile 28 – Haystack Falls
  • Mile 29 – Weeping Wall
  • Mile 30 – Big Bend
  • Mile 31 – Triple Arches (6,181’)
  • Mile 32 – Logan Pass (6,646’)

From the east side of the park:

  • Mile 0 – St. Mary Visitor Center (4,484’ elevation)
  • Mile 6 – Rising Sun (4,537’)
  • Mile 7 – Wild Goose Island Overlook
  • Mile 9 – Sun Point (4,690’)
  • Mile 10 – Sunrift Gorge
  • Mile 13 – Jackson Glacier Overlook (5,351’)
  • Mile 15 – Siyeh Bend (5,820’)
  • Mile 16 – East Side Tunnel
  • Mile 17 – The Big Drift
  • Mile 18 – Logan Pass (6,646’)

What did we miss about Glacier National Parking biking? Let us know in the question box or call us a 406-387-5555.

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