Sunday, January 20, 2013

Property Spotlight - Glacier Park Lodge

Property Spotlight
Glacier Park Lodge
By Seth Eagleton

So you just booked your vacation to Glacier National Park and are completely excited. You can’t wait to drive the Going-to-the-Sun Road and soak in all the natural beauty that you’ve been hearing of for years. This is it! You’re finally going to take the vacation-of-a-lifetime that you deserve. As you sit back, dreaming about the mountain air and sparkling lakes you’ll be soaking in just a few months from now, you might think to check some reviews on TripAdvisor. In a world where everyone’s voice is heard through social media, it can still be just as frightening to book a vacation now as it was the old fashioned way, right? Was Negative Nancy’s review accurate? Or was it Positive Pete’s? With Glacier Park Lodge’s 100th birthday coming up this year, we have been booking a lot of rooms earlier than normal. We wanted to put some effort into relaying what you can expect to find once you arrive here and enable you to enjoy your trip-of-a-lifetime.

The Glacier Park Lodge was a 5-star hotel 100 years ago. Now, we make every effort to preserve it as a historic national park lodge. On our brochures, “rustic” is not our code name for run-down or dilapidated.

  • It does mean that you won’t find TV’s or coffee makers inside your bedrooms.
  • It does mean that we haven’t disturbed the historic nature of this lodge by gutting it to replace the interior, insulation-less walls or the original radiator plumbing exposed under the ceilings.
  • Yes, you may hear your neighbor snoring. (By the way, can we point out that women snore too? Any comment from guests that involves a neighbor snoring always refers to the “guy in the room next to us.” After all, women snore, too.)
  • You may hear your neighbor’s conversation through the walls and it could benefit some to realize that your neighbor might hear your conversation, too. If you forgot yours, we have free earplugs available at the front desk.
  • You can expect to meet people from all over the globe, both as guests and as a part of our staff. This is one of the aspects that can entice folks to make an effort to be friendly to their neighbor.  Say hello, but don’t be surprised if you receive a bonjour or guten tag in response.

Now that you’re here and you’ve chosen to embrace the fact that your bandwidth/internet speed for the next few days takes you back to the time when it sounded like a wolverine lived inside your modem and you may not be able to retrieve your email every 30 seconds, we’d like to give you some suggestions on finding activities that don’t require electricity or internet.

  • Hiking -You may want to purchase a permit from the Blackfeet Reservation that allows you to hike the Scenic Point Trail. More info here
  • Hiking - If you are up early and want to make a whole day of it, hop in the car (Didn’t drive here and need to rent one? Our concierge desk would love to help) and head north to the Two Medicine area and hike the Dawson-Pitamakan Trail.
  • Shuffleboard - If hiking is not your thing, feel free to play some shuffleboard on the back lawn. Supplies are available at our concierge desk.  
  • Dining - You’ve seen the Great Northern Dining Room and should definitely give it a try, but if you are looking to find the spot that the locals frequent, head south to the Bison Creek Ranch. It’s a mom and pop shop where you’ll be treated to a hearty home-cooked meal.
  • Summertime Snacks - On those warm summer days, you could head over to the East Glacier Trading Company and try their ice cream and homemade fudge.
  • Kayaks - Head up to Two Medicine Lake and rent kayaks for the day. You’ll tend to find a lot of wind in that area, but you can stick close to the shore or you might luck out with a calm day.
  • Souvenirs – Walk up to the Spiral Spoon for a handcrafted wooden spoon or even a wand. Yes, you read that correctly - a wand.
  • Tours – One of the most popular methods for viewing the park is via our Red Bus Tours. If you want to see Glacier National Park like they did 100 years ago, the Red Bus Tours are perfect for you.
  • Golf - The very first golf course in the state of Montana to have greens made out of real grass was the nine-hole course at Glacier Park Lodge and the evenings there are gorgeous!
We hope this helps you plan your vacation and will possibly even prompt you to visit TripAdvisor and steer some of our future guests the right direction. You are now the local expert and can share your knowledge of local activities so they can arrive next year knowing what to expect. Oh, and one more thing. If you want to blend with the locals, crumpled up cowboy hats are the new shorts and knee-high socks in the Montana tourist world.

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