Dawson Pass (Glacier National Park) 02-Sep-2010

Dawson Pass Glacier National Park Montana

This was the third hike during our 2010 trip to Glacier National Park. We were at the Many Glacier Hotel again this year since it is at or near several trailheads. There is also a shuttle from the hotel to the free shuttle service that operates within the park and this allows us to do several long loop trips as dayhikes.

The wind howled and the rain poured for much of September 1st, so we passed the day with a road trip to East Glacier and Browning. The weather cleared completely overnight, giving us the courage to hike to Dawson Pass (6.8 miles roundtrip (using the boat); 2,900 feet of elevation gain) from Two Medicine Lake. We took the boat across the lake,

Dawson Pass Glacier National Park Montana
The Sinopah shortened our hike to Dawson Pass

and then hiked up into the Bighorn Basin,

Dawson Pass Glacier National Park Montana
On the Dawson Pass Trail near Pumpelly Pillar

and past No Name Lake.

Dawson Pass Glacier National Park Montana
Dawson Pass from No Name Lake

As we climbed higher, we got a good view down toward the lakes,

Dawson Pass Glacier National Park Montana
Two Medicine and No Name Lakes from the Dawson Pass Trail

and up toward Rising Wolf Mountain.

Dawson Pass Glacier National Park Montana
Rising Wolf from the Dawson Pass Trail

We got up to the pass and then a little higher toward Flinsch Peak before swirling clouds,

Dawson Pass Glacier National Park Montana
Clouds push across Dawson Pass

pushed us back down for lunch at, and views from, the pass.

Dawson Pass Glacier National Park Montana
At Dawson Pass, with Rising Wolf  in the distance

The panorama from the pass itself (at 7,598 feet) was nothing short of spectacular – it reminded me of vistas I’d experienced at much higher altitudes in the Andes.

Dawson Pass Glacier National Park Montana
Looking toward Lone Walker Mountain from Dawson Pass
Dawson Pass Glacier National Park Montana
Mount Phillips and the Lupfer Glacier are directly west of Dawson Pass
Dawson Pass Glacier National Park Montana
Mount Morgan from Dawson Pass
Dawson Pass Glacier National Park Montana
Nyack Creek Valley from Dawson Pass
Dawson Pass Glacier National Park Montana
Mount Helen from Dawson Pass

After lunch at the pass, we hurried back to the lake,

Dawson Pass Glacier National Park Montana
Back down through the Bighorn Basin

so as not to miss our boat ride across Two Medicine Lake to the parking lot. This was one day when were not chased back to the hotel’s bar by an incoming storm!

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