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St. Mary Glacier KOA
Near Glacier National Park
St. Mary, Montana
by
Norman W. Hildrum

Swift Current Lake, Glacier National Park, Montana - Photo by Norman HildrumWe left Great Falls and traveled north to Shelby, Montana. Here, we then left the freeway and drove west to Cut Bank, Browning, and Kiowa. From there we climbed through the mountainous foothills to St. Mary and the entrance to Glacier National Park. We climbed a number of very steep hills. I had the truck in first gear a number of times because of the grade and high winds. From this experience, I believe we can tackle just about any road in the United States.

We stopped at the Glacier National Park Visitor Center to see if we could get in any of the campgrounds with the "condo". All the park's campgrounds have 30 feet or less restrictions (we checked them out later and it would have been impossible for us to get in. View from KOA campsite, St. Mary, Montana - Photo by Norman HildrumI even had some problems maneuvering the truck).

A park ranger suggested several nearby commercial facilities. We decided to stay at the St. Mary KOA where we had our choice of sites. We selected one on the end giving us a huge living area and a clear view of the mountains. Our cost was $29.00 (05/00).

St. Mary Lake, Glacier National Park, Montana - Photo by Norman HildrumIn 1910, Congress created Glacier National Park from more than one million acres of Montana wilderness. The park is distinguished by its extraordinary beauty. It has nearly 50 glaciers, more than 250 lakes, broad valleys, forested slopes, and precipitous peaks. St. Mary Lake located near the East entrance is stunning. It made me want to find a quote about lakes. I found the following quote by Henry David Thoreau that seems to hit the mark.

A lake is the landscape’s most beautiful and expressive feature. It is earth’s eye; looking into which the beholder measures the depth of his own nature.

For more information on camping in Glacier National Park, check out the Glacier National Park website. Glacier National Park is a must see for SavvyCampers.


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