Glacier Country covers more than 22,000 square miles and is home to eight counties: Flathead, Glacier, Lake, Lincoln, Mineral, Missoula, Ravalli and Sanders. Our region encompasses 75+ charming small-town communities, including Missoula, Whitefish, Kalispell and Hamilton.
As the westernmost region of Montana, we’re located about 350 miles south of Calgary, 475 miles east of Seattle, 900 miles north of Denver and 1,100 miles west of Minneapolis.
Our corner of Montana is home to approximately 320,000 residents, which is almost one-third of the population of Montana.
We experience four distinct seasons in Western Montana, with an average temperature of 30 degrees in January and 85 degrees in July. As a fairly arid region, we receive about 15 inches of moisture per year. The valleys receive about 40 to 60 inches of annual snowfall, while the mountains may receive up to 350 inches.
We cherish our pristine waters in Western Montana; the region is home to numerous river drainages, including the Bitterroot, Blackfoot, Clark Fork and North, South and Middle forks of the Flathead River. Major lakes and reservoirs include Lake Como, Flathead Lake, Lake Koocanusa, Lake McDonald, Noxon Reservoir, Seeley Lake, St. Mary Lake, Swan Lake and Whitefish Lake.
Flathead Lake—the largest freshwater lake west of the Mississippi—is 30 miles long, nearly 15 miles wide and has a depth of 300 feet. The lake also has 185 miles of shoreline.
Strong American Indian culture and history are found in Western Montana, both on the Blackfeet Reservation and the Flathead Indian Reservation. Located on the eastern front of the Rocky Mountains, the Blackfeet Reservation is home to the Blackfeet Nation. At roughly 1.5 million acres in size, the reservation is home to 10,000 residents, including 8,500 enrolled Blackfeet. The Blackfeet Nation celebrates and shares its culture through North American Indian Days, Museum of the Plains Indian, Blackfeet Heritage Center and interpretive tours.
Located west of the Rocky Mountains, the Flathead Indian Reservation is home to the Kootenai, Pend d’Oreille and Bitterroot Salish tribes. Encompassing 1.3 million acres, the reservation is home to approximately 27,000 residents, with nearly 7,500 enrolled members. The reservation includes the CSKT Bison Range and part of Flathead Lake. The tribes celebrate their history and culture through The People’s Center, traditional pow wows and more.
Within our borders, you’ll find the Bitterroot, Bob Marshall, Cabinet, Great Bear, Kootenai, Lolo, Scapegoat and Selway-Bitterroot wilderness areas and five national forests including Lolo, Bitterroot, Flathead, Kootenai and Kaniksu—part of the Idaho Panhandle National Forests.
Glacier National Park is home to one million acres, 734 miles of maintained trails and six national historic landmarks. It’s also the largest intact ecosystem in the lower 48 states. Logan Pass sits at an elevation of 6,646 feet on the Continental Divide.
The highest mountain peak in the Bitterroot Mountains is Trapper Peak. It sits at an elevation of 10,157 feet.
Missoula—Western Montana’s arts and culture hub—is the largest city in Glacier Country and the second largest in Montana.
Montana is ranked fourth in the nation for breweries per capita.
Traveling to Western Montana and getting to Glacier National Park, are both easier than you might think. With two major airports—Missoula (MSO) and Glacier Park (FCA)—serviced by Allegiant Air, Alaska Airlines, American Airlines, Avelo Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Sun Country Airlines and United Airlines; train service (Amtrak's Empire Builder); car rentals; buses; and a well-maintained highway system, it’s pretty simple.
Map your journey throughout the region once you’ve arrived. Interstate 90 runs east and west anchoring our region, and Highway 93 runs north and south.
Lucy Guthrie Beighle, Public Relations and Earned Media Manager
Aerionna Skrutvold, Sales and Marketing Assistant
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It’s #NationalParkWeek and we want to hear your park story about our fave place, @GlacierNPS. Tweet a fun GNP memor… https://t.co/weKGsEahil