iceberglaketrail

Iceberg Lake is a brilliant lake with colors of turquoise and aquamarine with tall cliffs surrounding three sides.   The lake was named for the icebergs that can be seen floating about the lake.

The journey to the lake is stunning with wildflowers along the path.   It crosses through grizzly bear country and bears can be seen on the open slopes of the trail.

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How to Get There: Take Highway 89 North from Great Falls to the town of Browning and then follow the signs to Many Glacier and then to the Swiftcurrent Motor Inn.   Start at the Iceberg-Ptarmigan trailhead at the north end of the Swiftcurrent Motor Inn.  Trailhead GPS: 48.799744/-113.679291

Distance: 9 miles round trip
Elevation Gain: 1,194 feet
Maximum Elevation: 6,100 feet
Difficulty: Moderate
Best time to hike: June to September

Trail Description:

The trail starts with a climb to join a main trail which then turns northwest ascending along the open slopes above Wilbur Creek. You may see purple fireweed along the trail.   The trail then scoots below Altyn Peak and Mount Wilbur, aka “Heavy Shield Mountain” according to the Blackfeet.   You slowly emerge into open forests on the way to Ptarmigan Falls which can be a nice peaceful rest stop.

After you pass the falls, there is a junction with the Ptarmigan Tunnel Trail, but stay on the Iceberg trail as it turns southwest moving through some beautiful alpine landscapes to cross over the Iceberg Creek.   A gentle climb takes you to the Iceberg Lake where 3,000-foot cliffs surround you.   You may see mountain goats here as well as pikas and ground squirrels.

Additional Information:

The Many Glacier area is a prime haven for grizzly bears.   It is very important for hikers to stay together in a group, make lots of noise, wear a bear bell or talk, carry bear spray.   Sometimes the trails in this area close as a result of the bear activity.   Always check with a ranger on the status of a trail before proceeding on any hike in this park.

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