For many years we fished, hiked, rafted and camped in and around Glacier National Park, and when it came time to relocate, we decided to purchase our own piece of paradise in the wilds of the North Fork valley. Because there is so much Federal Land, Park Service and Forest Service, there was a shortage of private land suitable for our intended purposes, most available properties were too remote and inaccessible. When this particular property became available, realizing it was accessible, we quickly investigated its proximity to the river and Glacier National Park and made an offer, partly sight unseen. And as the saying goes – the rest is history!
Nearly 25 years later and we are still grateful for finding such a beautiful piece of property next to one of the most amazing national parks in the United States.
Named for a legendary grizzly bear that roamed the Smoky Range of the Flathead National Forest, Smoky Bear Ranch is located close to Glacier National Park’s West Glacier entrance and the Going-to-the-Sun Road, but far enough away from the crowds, and trains and traffic of the Highway 2 corridor. Our guests frequently remind us how quiet the area is, and appreciate the tranquility when it’s time to wind down.
Nestled along the western edge of the rugged Rocky Mountains of Glacier National Park, the remote North Fork River Valley remains virtually unchanged and offers some of the purest, most vitalizing air and water in the United States. From its pristine lakes to its roaring tributaries, the North Fork River earns its “Wild & Scenic River” designation. A short drive through the North Fork River Valley to the Polebridge entrance, and one can explore the truly remote areas of Glacier National Park, Bowman Lake, Kintla Lake, Logging Lake, Quartz Lakes, and other scenic landscapes.
When you arrive, we can help you book white water rafting trips, guided fishing trips, horseback & pack trips, wilderness hiking trips, alpine skiing at Whitefish Mountain, Nordic skiing among other activities. If you’d rather stay close, we have river fishing, mountain biking, hiking, Nordic skiing, sledding, and other activities on and around our property.
Winters are special, too!
Explore new fallen powder along the North Fork or the wilds of Glacier National Park. Rugged peaks, snow filled valleys, and signs of wildlife abound – it’s so quiet you can hear the snow fall. Snowmobile the famed Canyon Creek complex of groomed trails and McGinnis Creek all of the way to the top of The Big Mountain (snowmobile rentals nearby). Or, enjoy Alpine skiing at Whitefish Mountain Resort with over 4,000 skiable acres, a 3000 foot vertical drop, and hardly any crowds.
No matter what the season, bring your camera!
You can snap wolves on a fresh kill or grizzlies on the prowl. Bighorn sheep and mountain goats are always posing for great shots. Panoramas of Glacier Park and the Whitefish Range are breathtaking. Bald eagles, falcons, and other raptors are a common sight on the North Fork River.
Smoky Bear Ranch, LLC
4761 Smokey Bear Lane
Columbia Falls, Montana, 59912