Glacier National Park - Grinnell Glacier Hike

Glacier Distance View

We got up early to buy tickets for the boat ride across Swiftcurrent Lake and Lake Josephine to the trailhead for Grinnell Glacier. The early morning lighting was great for photographs.

Glacier Boat

When we arrived at the boat dock at the end of Lake Josephine we were greeted by a moose sitting in the marsh near the water.

Moose and Larrymoose

The hike was long, but the views were magnificent. Below you see Grinnell Lake at the bottom of the photo and Salamander Glacier at the top. Grinnell Glacier is just below Salamander. The water flows down from the glacier into the lake.

Grinnell Glacier

Annette's FallGrinnell

Grinnell Glacier hike

When we arrived at the top, we found a sign in the rocks showing where the glacier used to be. Now the area is a large, dry rock-covered area. After a short walk, we arrived at a lake containing icebergs with the remnants of the glacier.

Grinnell Glaciericeberg


As late as the 1950's the Salamander glacier at the top (photo below) and the Grinnell Glacier below (photo below) were connected. There are postcards showing people walking up the glacier from one level to the other.

Grinnell Glacier

We met members of a USGS research team at the glacier. They were using GPS devices to map the glacier. The team leader indicated that the entire glacier would be gone by 2020.

Grinnell Glacier

After some time relaxing at the top, it was time to head back down the hill. The photo below shows Grinnell Lake in the foreground, then Lake Josephine and Lake Sherburne in the distance.


The photo below shows the water flowing from the glacier into Grinnell Lake.

Grinnell Glacier

Grinnell Glacier

We thought the hike down the hill would be a snap, however it was steep so we had to be careful all the way down. We're glad we brought lots of water for the trip. The hike took the entire day, we spent several hours at the glacier and lake, and it was well worth the time.



When we arrived at the boat dock, we had some time to wait. We took off our shoes and soaked our sore feet in the water. The view below shows the Many Glaciers Lodge from the boat on the way home.

Grinnell Glacier hike

After eating at the Italian Gardens Ristorante near our motel room, we drove back to the Many Glaciers Lodge for an evening show. David Walburn is a contemporary folk singer. His multimedia show called Cabin Song - An Alaskan Adventure traced an expedition into Alaska's wilderness to build a cabin. Although we enjoyed the show, we liked Jack Gladstone better. The photo below shows the late afternoon view from the lodge.

Many Glaciers

Created by Annette Lamb and Larry Johnson, 9/06.