Hiking Highline Trail Glacier National Park Grizzly Bear Encounter

Highline Trail is the number one rated trail in all of Glacier National Park rated by AllTrails App.  We knew the hike was difficult but we knew we were going to do it.

We had done our research ahead of time and we knew we had to get up to the Logan Pass Visitor Center parking area by sunrise (which was 7:00 a.m. on this particular day)  Is to have any hope at all of getting a parking spot. Yes the height is that popular.

The First Grizzly Encounter

Right in the parking lot we saw a mama grizzly and 2 it’s not grizzly and 2 cubs. That was certainly beautiful and a little bit unnerving all at the same time. Maybe an omen of things to come.

Mama and Baby Grizzlies Glacier National Park. Top 16 Tips for Driving Going to the Sun Road Glacier National Park
Mama and Baby Grizzlies Glacier National Park.  So Cute and Very Dangerous

We got on the trail as soon as we could and were immediately  Is welcomed with some of the most beautiful views in all of America. Yes this trail is number one for a very very good reason.

I will be posting more details about this actual hike, But for right now I just want to post the video and give some more details of the bear Grizzly Bear encounter.

 Hiking the highline Trail Glacier National Park

Bear On The Trail

If we made it up to haystack Butte which is about four miles in and we had a gorgeous lunch up on the top with stunningly spectacular views.

After a nice break we started our descent and We were making good progress. We were about halfway back from the overall hike… All of a sudden someone comes running yelling bear!

When at 1st you hear that you don’t know if it’s a small bear, a big bear, a black bear, or a grizzly bear. So you delay for just a little bit and try to acquire more information…

The Bear Was A Male Grizzly

What we quickly discerned was that a large male grizzly bear was coming galloping up the trail.   People started moving quite briskly. One thing you must remember is, this trail is a very narrow trail with no escape up or down.  If the bear is coming up the your trail, the only means of escape is go the opposite direction up the trail.  We had 50 to 75 people moving very briskly, some might say running up the trail. Some of these people were calm, some were panicked, but no matter what, everyone had to keep moving.

How Did We Escape

Long story short, we were forced back up the trail for a mile or 2 until the trail finally broadened out so people could escape uphill or downhill and finally the bear was able to pass us.

The bear was not interested in attacking anybody. It just seemed to be very very familiar with this trail and was not going to let anyone interfere with its morning jaunt.

There was a small female park ranger up with us eventually, giving us some hints of what to do.  She did indeed place herself between the bear and the crowds. She deserves huge kudos for her bravery.

I will post more details after we get back to the office.



Highline Trail Grizzly Bear Encounter

Written by Wayne Moran - Visit Website