EXPLORE: Howe Lake Trail

By Beacon Staff

Ten years ago, the Robert Fire ripped across the Howe Ridge, on the west side of Lake McDonald in Glacier National Park.

The fire forced the evacuation of the west entrance of the park twice that summer, according to Marti Alltucker, who was working in the park at the time and remembers the fire running along the ridge.

“It was a huge wall (of fire) and it looked like everything was going to be gone by morning,” she said.

The two-mile Howe Lake Trail through the burn shows hikers how trees, plants and animals have recovered over the last decade.

At the end, Howe Lake provides excellent views of the surrounding mountains and a perfect spot for a picnic.

With only a few hundred feet in elevation gain, the trail is perfect for hikers of all abilities and can easily be completed in just a few hours.

How to get there:

From West Glacier, drive into the park and take a left on the Camas Road.

Drive 1.5 miles and turn right onto the Fish Creek Campground Road, which eventually becomes the Inside North Fork Road.

The trailhead is 5.5 miles from the campground.

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