“a classic glacial feature”
Lake McDonald Valley is the hub of activity on the west side of Glacier National Park. Once occupied by massive glaciers that carved this area thousands of years ago, the valley is now filled with spectacular sights, hiking trails, diverse species of plants and animals, historic chalets, and the grand Lake McDonald Lodge. Ten miles long and nearly 500 feet deep, Lake McDonald, the largest lake in the park, is a direct result of glacial carving. High peaks surrounding the lake all show evidence of the power of glaciers to carve even the hardest of rock. The powerful glaciers that carved the broad "u-shaped" valley that Lake McDonald sits in also carved smaller hanging valleys with wonderful waterfalls that are accessible by numerous hiking trails.
Around Lake McDonald, there are four campgrounds, a visitor center, and loads of nearby day hikes, and close lodges and restaurants. Plus, you can rent boats, and even schedule a horseback ride. You'll definitely want to hit up Going-to-the-Sun Road if you visit Lake McDonald.
Beautiful lake!! It's wonderfully clear! There's so many entrance points to the lake because it is so large, you're sure to find somewhere along it where you can be at least somewhat secluded. Be aware: It is ALL rocks, no sand, so make sure to bring water shoes!! Otherwise you might have some foot pain! No seaweeds, so that's a huge bonus.
A gorgeous view of Glacier Parks mountain range.
I grew up in Montana and it is fair to say I'm not very objective when I say Glacier NP is my favorite and Lake McDonald is the reason. I have waded into the crystal clear water of the lake and the beautiful pebbles. A friend and I camped nearby on a motorcycle trip before taking the Going to the Sun road. I have been on the banks of the river that feeds Lake McDonald during salmon snagging time. I have recently retired and will be moving back to the area and will make sure I go back to the area. Beautiful!
Just GO!!! You wont regret it
This place is beautiful! I have dipped my toes in at multiple points on this lake. There is nothing better than being in this beautiful place, with fresh air, wilderness all around, and miles upon miles of peaceful hiking amongst wildlife. The most popular spot on the lake. in my opinion is in Apgar village. So, if you are looking for a quiet lake experience, pull over at one of the view points lower on Going to the Sun Rd. and stroll down one of the footpaths to the lake. It is 1 million percent worth it!
Is there any possible way to purchase a small bag of these stones???? Pls reply
If you have the chance, visit Lake McDonald in the winter. All of the concessions and lodging inside Glacier National Park will be closed but there are places to stay and eat in West Glacier. And here's why you should visit: seeing (and photographing) the snow-covered mountain reflections in the lake is pure magic. Although most of Going-to-the-Sun Road is closed in winter, the park service keeps 10 miles plowed to Lake McDonald Lodge. Stop along the way to take those gorgeous photos of the lake that I suggested. The, park in the lot at the closed lodge to hike, snowshoe or cross-country ski as far as you'd like on Going-tho-the Sun Road.
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