Swan Mountain Outfitters Retains Glacier Park Horseback Contract

National Park Service announces local company awarded new 10-year contract

By Beacon Staff
Danielle Weber and Hannah Neel help some new riders on to their horses at the Apgar corral. - Justin Franz/Flathead Beacon

The National Park Service announced Thursday that Swan Mountain Outfitters was successful in its bid for another 10-year concessioner contract to provide horseback trail rides and other packing services in Glacier National Park.

NPS Intermountain Regional Director Sue Masica said Swan Mountain Outfitters will be awarded a new 10-year contraction for guided interpretive horseback trail rides and pack animal services in the local park. The new contract is anticipated to commence Jan. 1, 2017. The agency began accepting bids for the services this spring.

Swan Mountain Outfitters – Glacier Division LLC is a wholly owned subsidiary of Swan Mountain Outfitters, a local outfitting company.  Swan Mountain Outfitters has over 12 years of experience providing trail rides and pack trips out of seven locations in and around Glacier National Park including providing these services in the park since 2007.

The horseback concessionaire runs three corrals within the park’s boundaries, located at Apgar, Lake McDonald, and Many Glacier. The Apgar site tends to run trail rides on six major loops, the Lake McDonald site typically includes four major trails, and the Many Glacier site regularly covers seven trails.

Specific operating standards and requirements include offering daily horseback trail rides, ranging from one hour to all day, as well as having one wrangler per nine riders.

Swan Mountain Outfitters, which also runs outfitting trips outside the park’s boundaries as well, had its busiest year ever in 2015.

The horses hit the trail in Glacier Park typically in mid-May, and continue their work until after Labor Day.

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