A mountain goat crosses Glacier National Park’s Going-to-the-Sun Road’s at Logan Pass on July 13, 2020. Hunter D’Antuono | Flathead Beacon
Glacier Park

Alpine Section of Going-to-the-Sun Road Closes Early for Season

Sustained winter weather prompts season-ending closure to motorized access along Glacier National Park’s most scenic stretch of highway

By Tristan Scott

Due to continued winter weather, the alpine segment of the Going-to-the-Sun Road in Glacier National Park will remain closed for the season. Park officials announced the season-ending closure late Wednesday afternoon.

Currently, visitors can drive 15.5 miles from the West Entrance to Avalanche Creek, and 13.5 miles from the St. Mary Entrance to Jackson Glacier Overlook.  

The Going-to-the-Sun Road typically closes between Avalanche Creek and Jackson Glacier Overlook on or before the third Monday in October, depending on road and weather conditions.  

A temporary road closure was first implemented on Oct. 10 due to inclement weather. Since then, several inches of snow have accumulated at Logan Pass atop the Continental Divide and the upper sections of the road remain icy. The National Weather Service forecasts additional snowfall on Oct. 13 as well as wind gusts up to 20 mph.

“As a result, the Going-to-the-Sun Road closure between Avalanche Creek and Jackson Glacier Overlook will continue for the remainder of the season,” according to the park’s news release announcing the closure.

Visitors should be aware of road crews prepping for winter operations, which include removing guard rails, displays, and signs, and installing snow poles along the road closure. Hiking and biking is permitted on most closed roads in the park as far as the hiker/biker closure signs; however, risks include falling ice or rocks, and ice-covered or snowy road conditions. Closure points are determined by changing road crew activity and conditions. Bicycling is not permitted on snow-covered roads. 

Elsewhere in the park, seasonal closures have already taken effect. The Many Glacier Entrance is closed at the boundary to all traffic due to construction. To stay up to date with changing road conditions, visit the park’s Current Road Status webpage

Construction on U.S. Highway 2 is slated to continue into November along the southern border of Glacier National Park and visitors can check the Montana Department of Transportation website for updates. Camas Road remains under construction until the beginning of November causing 30-minute delays in both directions during the day. 

Most visitor amenities in the park have closed for the season. Two Medicine, Bowman Lake, Kintla Lake, and one section of Apgar (Loop B) campgrounds, are open for primitive camping on a first come, first served basis until Oct. 31, when they will move into winter camping and remain open as winter road conditions permit. St. Mary Campground opens to winter camping on Nov. 1. Visitors may check campground status on our website

The Apgar Wilderness Permit Office and Aquatic Invasive Species Boat Inspection Station close October 31. No boating in the park is permitted after Oct. 31. Free winter wilderness camping permits are available Nov. 1 – April 30 and can be reserved three to seven days in advance by email or phone (406-888-7857).  

The Apgar Visitor Center is open on weekends through Oct. 24, weather permitting, but Wi-Fi, restrooms and potable water remain available at this location year-round.

The park is open year-round and recreational opportunities can be found during all seasons. Learn more about winter operations at Glacier National Park on our Visiting in Winter webpage. For additional visitor inquiries, contact park headquarters at 406-888-7800.

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