Logan Pass East Bike Climb - PJAMM Cycling

4
FIETS
6.8 mi
DISTANCE
1,877 ft
GAINED
5.2 %
AVG. GRADE

FULL CLIMB STATS

Page Contributor(s): Bruce Hamilton, La Quinta, CA, USA; Stacy Topping, Tacoma, WA, USA.

INTRO

"One of the most scenic climbs in the United States, the east side of Logan Pass is a moderate climb to fairly high altitude in northern Montana within Glacier National Park. Beyond the scenic lake at climb start the road heads up a ridge along moderate grade. Also known as The Going to the Sun Road, it receives multiple feet of snow each winter and its opening each Spring is often arduous and quite the spectacle..." (This quote is presented with the approval of John Summerson, from his book, The Complete Guide to Climbing (by Bike), 2nd Edition, pg. 188.)
The most challenging part of this climb will be to keep your eye on the road and not the scenic beauty surrounding you.  The average grade is a fairly consistent 5.2%.  48% (3.3 miles) of the climb is at grade 0-5%, and 49% (3.4 miles) at 5-10%.  The steepest quarter-mile is 7.2% and steepest continuous mile 5.9%. 

See more details and tools regarding this climb's grade via the “Profile Tool” button.
Roadway; Excellent condition. For roadway conditions check out nps.gov - road conditions.
 
Traffic: Lighter in the morning.

Traffic Restrictions: bicycles are prohibited on certain parts of the road from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. June 15 through Labor Day (See Full Summary for more details).

Fee: There will be a fee to enter the park on a bike - $15 as of 2020.  Check here for updated fee information.

Parking: If you are staying at the closest lodging to the climb start (Rising Sun Motor Inn), five miles east of climb start, you can ride to the beginning of the climb: Map; Street View. Otherwise, park at Saint Mary's Falls parking lot just before the start of the climb - Map; Street View. Get there early. 
Provisions: None along the way. There may be water at the Visitor Center at the finish but probably no food. 
Before heading out on any cycling adventure check out our Things to Bring on a Cycling Trip and use our interactive check list to ensure you don't forget anything.
Consider riding Logan Pass East as an out-and-back to include Logan Pass West - 35 miles gaining 5,000' (map). 

There are options to stay in West Glacier, MT which is close to this climb. There are many wonderful cabin rentals near the park too!

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CLIMB SUMMARY

Climbing by bike Going to the Sun Road - Logan Pass - Saint Mary Lake, road, mountains

Logan Pass East, Glacier National Park.

Ride 6.8 miles gaining 1,877’ at 5.2% average grade.

Cycling Logan Pass East, Going-to-the-Sun Road, Glacier National Park - cyclist riding on two-lane portion of road along Saint Mary Lake, riding toward large rock formations

This extraordinary climb is located in the heart of Glacier National Park and just shy of Going-To-The-Sun-Mountain which is in the Central Montana subrange of the Rocky Mountains. Glacier National Park is the tenth most visited of the 62 national parks, with an average of 2,965,000 visitors per year. Cycling is permitted in Glacier National Park, with the following restrictions on Going-to-the-Sun Road per the National Park Service:

For safety and to ease congestion, restrictions are in effect on sections of the Going-to-the-Sun Road, from June 15 through Labor Day:

From Apgar Campground to Sprague Creek Campground bicycles are prohibited, both directions, between 11 am and 4 pm.

From Logan Creek to Logan Pass east-bound (uphill) bicycle traffic is prohibited between 11 am and 4 pm. Start early! It takes about 45 minutes to ride from Sprague Creek to Logan Creek and about three hours from Logan Creek to Logan Pass.

Cycling Logan Pass East, Going-to-the-Sun Road, Glacier National Park - cyclist riding along two-lane road next to Saint Mary Lake

Going-to-the-Sun Road, Saint Mary Lake.

Lodging:  Inside the park, Lake McDonald Lodge has excellent accommodations, or the less upscale option is always camping -- it is a national park afterall.  Outside of the park, PJAMM Cycling has stayed in Whitefish and Kalispell.

Cycling Logan Pass East, Going-to-the-Sun Road, Glacier National Park - Saint Mary Lake along roadside

The road often does not open until late June and is crowded during summer months. Start early – we started at 6:30am when the traffic was light and the road was quiet. Traffic will be heavy by the time you are coming back down and bikes are not allowed after 11am. The grade is a pretty consistent 5-6% and the road condition is generally good. There is often morning fog and the burnoff that occurs later in the morning can make a spectacular climb even more dramatic. We were treated to quite a show on our ride in June 2019, with cloud formations changing constantly as we climbed. This is not a difficult climb by PJAMM Cycling’s standards, but it’s top notch on the scenery list.

Cycling Logan Pass East, Going-to-the-Sun Road, Glacier National Park  - cyclist riding on straight portion of two-lane road with pointy mountain peaks behind

This climb is equally as scenic as the west side, but half the distance.  Begin at beautiful Saint Mary Lake (the second largest lake in Glacier National Park, behind Lake McDonald) and ride to the Continental Divide along Logan Pass.  

Views just before the pass.

Bicycling Going to the Sun Road - Logan Pass - PJAMM Bruce Hamilton and Stacy Topping at the pass and continental divide

PJAMMers Stacy Topping and Bruce Hamilton at Logan Pass.

Thanks much for the photos and contribution team!

Visit our Glacier National Park page for more information.