Archive for Hiking Glacier National Park – Page 2

Consider taking this GNP hike. It will give you memories to recall for many years.

Otokomi Lake – 11 miles round trip

A strenuous hike with a 1900 ft. elevation gain.

Starting at the Rising Sun Motor Inn in Glacier National Park, follow the trail towards Otokomi Lake. The trail parallels the east side of Rose Creek. Rose creek drainage from St. Mary Lake to the headwaters of Otokomi Lake is dominated by a series of fast-moving water cascades, impressive waterfalls, and turquoise pools of water……..a photographers delight. Most of these sights cannot be seen, from the “Going To The Sun Road. It’s only by hiking this lovely trail that we can experience, such a peaceful bit of nature.

One of the numerous enjoyments of this hike is to view the outstanding colorful rocks that make up the Rose Basin in which Otokomi Lake sets. The rock walls surrounding the lake are a deep, dark, throbbing red. Within this red basin bright green highlights of the stunted alpine Douglas firs and meadow grass seem to almost glow in a clear blue sky above.

A day hike or short backpack from Rising Sun Motor Lodge to Otokomi Lake. The trail begins in the wooded St. Mary Valley, and climbs around a hillside to the west to enter the Rose Creek drainage.

The trail passes Rose Creek along the Lewis thrust fault to a low-elevation cirque lake among blocky, reddish mountains.

As you hike along Rose Creek, we will go through a forested area of juniper trees, Douglas fir, maple, and many other tall trees. On the ground you find wild roses, asters, paintbrush, fireweed and beargrass. This trail shows off nature at her best.

As you leave the creek side, we will climb the trail upward going back and forth on switchbacks then climb through a forest of Douglas Fir and Lodgepole Pine. The needles from these trees will make soft footing through here. This is a dense area with trees.
After hiking along the forested creek valley for 2.5 miles past pools and small waterfalls, you climb onto an open rockslide area and Suddenly, you hike out of the trees and find yourself high above Rose creek from here Goat Mountain is clearly visible across the lake. This impressive view of Goat Mountain as it rises to an altitude of 8,826 feet is spectacular.

As you approach the Otokomi Lake basin, you cross a large slope of scree (also called talus an accumulation of broken rock fragments at the base of crags, mountain cliffs, or valley shoulders) and avalanche area where one can easily visualize the glacial action that carved the U-shaped valley where talus slopes come down from Goat Mountain at 8826′ to Otokomi Lake.

Just before reaching the lake, the trail passes Otokomi Campground (back country permit needed to camp here overnight), located to the left of the trail. The trail bends around to the south-west before arriving at the outlet to Otokomi Lake. The lake covers the floor of the Rose Basin, named for the ruddy argillite cliffs surrounding the cirque.

The remoteness of this lake with the striking view of the surrounding basin is a panorama of sheer beauty!