Question about June 2019 on the east side of Glacier

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Question about June 2019 on the east side of Glacier

Postby calicotraveler » Mon Oct 08, 2018 12:51 pm

We've been coming to Glacier for many years but usually in August. Thought we'd make a change for 2019 and show up mid-June. My question is: What can we expect of the weather at this time of year? I know the Sun road may not be open yet but how about Many Glacier? Waterton Lakes? What hikes are doable this early in the season?

Thanks for any input!
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Re: Question about June 2019 on the east side of Glacier

Postby wnysteve » Mon Oct 08, 2018 1:54 pm

The earliest that I have been to Glacier was June 24. It so happened that the Sun Road opened on that day. Here are some of the details:

Logan Pass and the Hidden Lake trail were open.

Piegan Pass trail from Siyeh Bend passable til about 200 yards below the pass. As we were studying how to work around the ice wall that blocked the trail a rockslide came down on us. No injuries, but we forgot about going around the ice wall.

Otokomi Lake trail was open

In Many Glacier, the trail to Grinnell Glacier was closed due to snow.

Ptarmigan Tunnel and Iceberg Lake trails were open. On the upper part of the Iceberg Trail there was rain which turned to snow, but a good hike. This was June 29.

Swiftcurrent Pass trail was open; There was snow at the Pass itself which did not hinder the hiking.

Crowds were tolerable, except on the Hidden Lake Trail. I guess some things don't change.

I know that doesn't cover the mid-June time frame you are interested it, but hope it helps.
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Re: Question about June 2019 on the east side of Glacier

Postby PeteE » Mon Oct 08, 2018 4:40 pm

Mid June can be virtually anything as I'm sure you're aware.
I've seen it absolutely spectacularly gorgeous as in June 2015 below.
And pretty damn nasty like this past June.

Usually, usually 8) mid June is cool and wet, compared to mid August.
The air is usually much clearer than later on when more dust and smoke are present.
Most of lower elevation trails are open as Steve noted.
The St Mary Valley trails are really great in mid June now that the Reynolds fire opened that area up.
The higher elevation trails are, again, as Steve noted, will usually not be open until later on.

I would bring MicroSpikes since they don't add much to your luggage.
Often as not, the lower part of Siyeh/Piegan Pass trails can have big "snow humps" on them well into June.
Freezing nights may cause otherwise easy snowfields icy and s to be lick, e.g. the ones on the switcbacks up to Siyeh pass and below Cataract on the Piegan pass trail.
Creeks run higher so may need water shoes on some trails--Swiftcurrent pass?
Hard to know some of these weather dependent things until just before you come.

I like June. The park is greening up. Remaining snow makes for great photos.
Siyeh Pass is maybe my favorite hike(excluding off trail routes) in GNP.
And June 20th 2015 was the most memorable of the 20+ times I've done it.
Pics in link. They look"off" because they are as they came out of the camera. Not edited.
https://glaciergeezer.smugmug.com/Siyeh ... /n-rJq2V5/

Waterfalls everywhere going full bore. Many animals active, babies coming, etc.
Bring clothing/footwear for rain, wind, and cool weather.

Unfortunately, mid June has become far busier than it was just 4-5 years ago.
So make your reservations early.

my 2 cents

pete :wink:

June 20th on the switchbacks above Preston Park looking at L-R Reynolds, Piegan, and Pollack.


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Boulder Creek valley from the high point of Siyeh Pass hike
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Re: Question about June 2019 on the east side of Glacier

Postby Jay w » Mon Oct 08, 2018 6:53 pm

You may want to look at the Trail Reports and specifically one called "A bartenders guide to Glacier." The author is not that interesting, but he was out there in June and he posted a lot of pictures.
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Re: Question about June 2019 on the east side of Glacier

Postby daveparker » Mon Oct 08, 2018 11:40 pm

If you can think of it, June normally has it, Snow, Rain, Sunshine, Wind, cold, Warm, June is normally a toss up month mother nature is going through menopause in June around here most years.. :lol:

One of my favorite times of year and this will be my 21st June in the Rockies, but prepare for just about anything you can think of!

I have pictures around here somewhere taken on the 21st of June which is the first day of summer and there is 6" of snow on the humming bird feeder and a couple of inches of snow on the head of the humming bird sitting on it.

:shock:
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Re: Question about June 2019 on the east side of Glacier

Postby llholmes1948 » Tue Oct 09, 2018 9:42 am

Here is a link to my trip report from early June of 2007. We had a great time and the park was quite deserted then. I guess that is changed now:

viewtopic.php?f=11&t=1182&p=9077#p9077
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Re: Question about June 2019 on the east side of Glacier

Postby PeteE » Tue Oct 09, 2018 7:21 pm

June 19th 2016
Nice day, but chilly and windy so bring appropriate gear.
Near the spot in Preston Park where I took the 2015 pictures above.
Too much snow to get over the pass that day and the last mile or so to get here was all snow.
I was glad to have MicroSpikes, but many folks don't need them.


Mid June is a good time to come! :D
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Re: Question about June 2019 on the east side of Glacier

Postby calicotraveler » Wed Oct 10, 2018 8:39 am

Thanks to all of you with the info I was looking for! Looks like we'll be in for snow, some rain and more clear skies (when there is no rain) than we get in August. Hopefully less park visitors. Sun road likely won't be open (just have to wait and see on that).
In any case it will be a nice change from the smoke and huge amounts of people that we have been seeing in August. Last trip we flew in and out of Spokane. However, the fires were so bad that we couldn't get to Spokane for the return flight and had to fly out of Kalispell.

We've just made some reservations on the eastside of the park and are really looking forward to returning to Glacier. I really didn't know that we would be running into so much snow and rain in June, but it will be a nice change to see the park at a different time.

Appreciate your helpful info! :D
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