Sunday, July 14, 2019

Adventure 15/50 : Glacier National Park and Lake McDonald Boat Cruise

** Hey readers -- I'm catching up with a bunch of "adventures" over the next couple of weeks. We've been so busy doing things, I haven't made the time to do much writing. So enjoy these stories of our adventures in May and June. **
De Smet image courtesy Flathead News
For our second full day in Glacier National Park we went on a morning boat tour of Lake McDonald. We drove to the Lake McDonald Lodge to meet the boat.

The lodge is lovely -- in the way old national park lodges always are. A big lobby with a soaring ceiling:

 Huge logs make up the columns:

And a nice outdoor veranda with a view. 

We would be sailing on the De Smet, a 57-foot wooden boat built in 1930 by Captain Swanson for the Glacier Park Transport Company. She was constructed to carry passengers on Lake McDonald and this lake has remained her home ever since.

When it came time to get on the boat, there was an orderly rush, and we claimed seats in the bow.

The ride was narrated by a naturalist, who talked about the trees on the shore, the fire damage, and the geology of the area.... but she also kept quiet for large portions of the hour-long cruise so we could just enjoy the scenery. Which is what I'm going to do.

After our lovely, peaceful cruise around the lake, we went into the lodge and had lunch at Russell's Fireside Dining Room before heading back home.

Russell's before they opened for the day
After lunch the four of us went on a short hike along a river:

High water meant we had to turn back rather than complete the loop, but we did enjoy stretching our legs a bit!

Our Lake McDonald Boat Cruise was a perfect little adventure -- and a great second day in Glacier National Park!


  1. It looks so amazing and so peaceful!

    1. Thanks Suz! We were super lucky with our weather that morning -- the lake was super calm.