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Beaver Medicine Falls, Montana

Located along Sprague Creek in Glacier National Park’s Flathead County, Beaver Medicine Falls is a well-known water feature landmark along the Gunsight Pass Trail that leads to the Sperry Chalets.

As one of the most popular regions of the park, the waterfall is easily accessible, with many campgrounds and services available in the area.

Beaver Medicine Falls, Flathead County Stats

beaver medicine falls stats

  • Elevation: 5470 feet
  • Latitude: 48.60166
  • Longitude: -113.79713
  • How to Get There: The best vantage point of the falls is from the Gunsight Pass Trail, accessible from either Lake McDonald Lodge Trailhead or the St. Mary’s Falls Parking Lot Trailhead.

Recreation Activities

Hiking

hiking

Hiking is the primary mode of transportation in the park, and Beaver Medicine Falls, Montana, requires at least two hours to reach on foot. The falls are 4.5 miles from Lake McDonald Lodge along a steady incline trail.

From the falls, there are plenty of additional trails to extend your hike, or you can head to the nearby Sperry Chalets, where further adventures in Glacier National Park’s backcountry await.

Fishing

fishing

While the creek may be too small for fishing, hikers visiting the falls can follow the water back to Lake McDonald, where they can engage in some of the best fishing Glacier National Park offers.

Within the 6,867-acre body of water, wranglers can expect to catch a variety of fish, including native species such as Largescale Sucker, Longnose Sucker, Northern Pike Minnow, Peamouth, and much more.

Camping

camping

There are plenty of camping opportunities in Glacier National Park, with the nearest backcountry campground to Beaver Medicine Falls being the Sperry Chalets Campground.

Located only a short distance from the historic landmark hotel, the campgrounds offer hikers the opportunity to sleep out along its picturesque landscape.

Of course, those that prefer the comforts of a fully serviced hotel are welcomed to book a room at the preserved and operated chalets themselves.

Horseback Riding

Swan Mountain Outfitter’s Sperry Chalet guided trail ride is one of the best ways to experience the Beaver Medicine Falls without enduring the rigorous hike to the landmark on foot.

Starting from their Lake McDonald Corral at 8:00 am, the ride brings guests up the Gunsight Pass Trail along Sprague Creek. Guests stop at the Beaver Medicine Falls observation point along the ride before continuing on to the chalets themselves.

Swan Mountain Outfitters is the only guided horse trail experience in Glacier National Park, offering diverse trails throughout the preservation.

They offer three additional guided riding trails from the Lake McDonald Corral for visitors to continue their exploration of Flathead County.

Trail Routes

Gunsight Pass Trail

gunsight pass trail

From the Lake McDonald Lodge Trailhead, visitors will follow the Gunsight Pass Trail for 4.5 miles until they reach the falls along Sprague Creek.

At this point, hikers can decide to turn back and complete the 9-mile out and back hike to the falls in approximately three and a half hours.

Alternatively, visitors can continue along the path for another 1.4 miles, where they will arrive at the Sperry Chalets. From the Chalets, guests can visit one of the nearby lakes, camp at the next-door campgrounds, or continue along one of the other paths starting at the chalets and leading to the different regions of the park.

Gunsight Pass Via St. Mary Lake and the Continental Divide Trail

An alternative hike to Beaver Medicine Falls starts at the Saint Mary Falls Trailhead along Glacier Route 1 Road.

From the trailhead, hikers follow the path for approximately 0.7 miles before reaching a fork in the road. Then, taking the Continental Divide Trail to the right, hikers will follow the track for an additional mile before arriving at another intersection.

The path to the left is the Gunsight Pass Trail, which hikers will follow for another 13.5 miles until they arrive at the falls. Along the way, hikers will pass several campgrounds, including the Sperry Chalets, where it is suggested they spend the night.

After visiting the falls, hikers should continue along the path to Lake McDonald Lodge, where they can arrange a shuttle back to their vehicles.

In total, the hike is 19.5 miles and takes approximately 7 hours and 44 minutes to complete. While there are quicker methods of arriving at the falls, this is the best route for exploring the diverse topography featured in the park.

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