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Home » Adventures » Glacier Highline Trail » Logan Pass

Crossing Swiftcurrent and Logan Pass

Route I hiked this day

Route I hiked this day

Between having crossed Pigeon Pass before, skipping the CDT section of the Highline Trail due to full campsites, and Ley’s encouragement about Swiftcurrent Pass being a highlight of Glacier National Park, I elected for the long way out of Many Glacier — up Swiftcurrent Pass, over to Logan Pass, and back down to Reynolds Creek.

The hike up to Swiftcurrent Pass and the view back to Many Glacier Valley was nice, although not as great as predicted —Stoney Indian Pass was better. I did some bonus climbing up to the lookout atop Swiftcurrent Mountain and was greatly rewarded with grand views of the massive unending mountains rangers, with many peaks capped by glaciers. Awesome.

Granite Peak Chalet was all boarded up for winter as I expected, so no treats were to be had. I instead continued along the Highline Trail, taking in the scenery. I took another detour with bonus climbing, this time up to Grinnell Glacier overlook. The route was steep, but the view down onto the glacier and Grinnell Lake was worth it.

Grinnell Lake and Glacier

Despite my several side trips, I still wanted to get to Logan Pass Visitor Center before it closed so I could get my passport stamp. I did not look up its opening hours beforehand, but 5 p.m. seemed reasonable. I hie tailed it along the Highline Trail to try to meet that deadline, while still trying to enjoy my surroundings. As I neared the pass more tourists on day hikes crowded the trail, but several mountain goats were out there as well. I reached the visitor center just at five, only to discover it had closed for the season a week ago. All my scurrying had been in vain.

After recovering from my race to the visitor center I walked the Going to the Sun road to Gunsight Pass Trailhead and finished the short stroll to Reynolds Creek. Unfortunately the bridge had already been removed for the season, so I had to ford the gentle river to reach my campsite located just on the other side. I would have ford it again first thing in the morning as well. Several CDT hikers, just days from the end, shared my campsite. This was my third time staying at Reynolds Creek, but the first without rain.

Looking into Many Glacier Valley from Swiftcurrent Mountain
A narrow stretch of the Highline Trail