In the photo above, The Glacier Haven Inn's 8 units are on the far (south/east) side, the
future Cafe and Coffee Shop are under the oval sign, the future
Registration Office will be in the section on the right in the photo
above. To register for one of the 8 rooms, go to the office to the right, and behind, the Cafe or call (406) 888-5720.
Left, Rooms 5, 6, 7, and 8. Right entrances to Rooms 4, 3, 2, and 1.
When there are 2 or more photos per line, click any one to see it larger.
To register for one of the 8 rooms, go to the office to the right, and behind, the Cafe.
"Check In Here" spot. Actually home of the Olson's and temporary motel check in spot.
All 8 rooms look brand new in all respects. Two beds in all rooms, queen and full, or queen and twin beds.
Each room has an ice maker! Fill the coffee pot with water,
lift the lid, pour in water, close the lid, turn on power button and
soon you will have cute little ice cubes!
Microwave and coffee maker with both decaf and regular Montana Coffee Traders packets. Clear cups and insulated cups. Also, but unphotographed, a refrigerator.
Darren tasted Montana Coffee
Traders coffee and decided to purchase whole bean coffee from them and
in his Coffee Shop will grind each cup fresh from whole beans.
Darren said he wanted travelers in the corridor to think of his place
as, "You can get great coffee here." As to the flavor of his
coffee, "You know you are drinking a cup of coffee." His new
machine will make coffee drinks, expresso drinks, and can turn out
200-250 drinks a day. The cafe was originally known as Denny's
Underpass, but was only open 2 days a week for RV park to get
food. A cafe is needed for the locals, especially during the off
The Cafe and Coffee Shop has a new, top-of-the-line expresso machine for coffee drinks.
Resort owners, Darren and MaLi Olson
The art piece behind MaLi and Darren above is by MaLi. A studio for MaLi is currently being constructed at Glacier Haven.
Close proximity of the BNSF tracks for the rail fans.
View from behind the motel rooms. View through the road opening in the photo on the left.
Left, looking east. Right, looking west from the road at the base of the railroad property.
View from the motel room's back window.
Even with inclement weather, from Rooms 1, 2, and 3 you can view passing trains. You
can easily walk to the RV Park up the Resort's road which parallels the
RR access road and the tracks. At the RV Park, the tracks are
level with the campground and there is open space to watch trains
(shown in the next section of this report).
Click the image above to see a larger copy.
The image above is a Burlington
Northern Santa Fe Trackage map, but it also shows Hwy. 2. Glacier
Haven is at "Pinnacle", above Essex on the map, on the left side of the
road heading north. Print the larger version of this map (click
the image above) and if you have a scanner, you can hear approaching
trains as they pass the mileposts by number.
RR milepost closest to the Glacier Haven RV Park and Campsites
Glacier Haven RV Park
Entrance to Glacier Haven RV Park off Hwy. 2 just west of the INN.
John Wade manages the RV Park.
There are 19 campsites in the
Park. All pads have been extended to accommodate a 45 ft.
vehicle. Some pads can accommodate 60 ft. vehicles. All
camper sites have full hookups - electrical plugs that RV travelers
expect 30 and 50 amp, water, picnic table, chairs, fire ring and
sewer. There are two dry cabins with electrical and beds
with showers and laundry a few steps away. I walked to the RV
Park from the motel and took some photos.
Two dry cabins.
Showers and laundry.
Tesla owners should bring a plug that will fit one of the left receptacles. Plugs above right are from Tesla.com site.
For overnight charging, pitch a tent, or rent a dry cabin, or motel room in the Inn.
RV Park Manager, John, said, "Bring out a chair and watch trains along the BNSF tracks". Amtrak
passes from the west in the morning and passes from the east in the
Click the image above to see a larger copy.
As we checked out of Glacier Haven early on a September morning, after
a rain during the previous night, I thought the resort looked
particularly photogenic in the morning light.
Future Developments at Glacier Haven Inn, Motel, RV Park, campground, and Cafe
Continue to get the materials to get the Cafe open.
Starlink for the motel, cafe/office, and RV park and campsites.
As of this writing, Darren is using the Beta version of Starlink. He has purchased the dish and modem.
Hwy. 2 runs north and south in this area, so his dish faces
northeast. He has found support people very good. Starlink
is proving to be 4 to 10 times the speed of the previous provider,
Hughes, with 50 MB to 200 MB download speed which is comparable to
Comcast back in Seattle.
Replace the motel with a 25-room lodge.
Click the image above to see a larger copy.
How to get to the Glacier Haven Resort Inn, campground and RV park:
1. For the frugal rail fan,
I would suggest taking the Amtrak Empire Builder, room or coach, to
East Glacier Amtrak Station, renting a car from Dollar,
distance from the station, and driving to Glacier Haven Resort &
Inn between mile markers 174 and 175 on highway 2, the highway
that runs past the Station and on east or westward. (Make the Resort,
Amtrak, and Dollar rental car reservations ahead of time.)
2. A similar option is to take the Amtrak Empire Builder to West Glacier Amtrak Station and reserve a Hertz rental car (This is a seasonal location which is closed September 16 through June 14 each year.) and drive to Glacier Haven Resort &
Inn between mile markers 174 and 175 on highway 2, the highway that runs past the Station and on east or westward.
(Make the Resort, Amtrak, and rental car reservations ahead of time.)
3. A third Empire Builder option is to have your Amtrak ticket made out to Essex, Montana. Arrange with the Izaak Walton
inn to rent one of their cars as you step off the train and receive a
lift in their van a few hundred yards to their Inn. Drive only 7
miles west to the Glacier Haven Inn and select the accommodations you
prefer. If the Glacier Haven Cafe is not yet open, return to the
Izaak Walton Inn for your meals.
4. Drive your passenger or recreational vehicle to
the Glacier Haven Inn and RV Park. If you have a Tesla, use the
campground Level 2 charger at the pads and either pitch a tent, use
their dry cabin, or get a room in the motel. During the day,
visit Glacier National Park or take water raft rides available at West
Glacier entrance. Rent a Tesla from skyecorentals.com in Columbia Falls.
5. Fly to Kalispell, commercially or your own plane, rent a car, and drive to Glacier Haven Inn and RV Park and select the accommodations that meet your needs.
Things to do from Glacier Haven Inn & Resort
Click the map above for a larger copy.
Waterton-Glacier Peace Park (Includes Glacier National Park plus some Canadian area)
Take your passport if
you plan to cross the border into Canada for that portion of the Peace
Park. You do not need a passport to drive the
Going-to-the-Sun-Road, which is in the Glacier National Park section of
the Peace Park.
The map above lists many, many activities in and around Glacier
National Park. You can obtain your own map from the source
below. Some of the activities listed include: Boating and
Fishing, Hiking, Horseback Riding, Wildlife Viewing, Cross-country
skiing, Snowshoeing, Bicycle Riding and camping, Golf, Cultural Tours,
Scenic Tours (Red Bus), Scenic Cruise, River Access, Public Campsites,
Private Campgrounds (Glacier Haven).
We drove to the West Glacier area before the entrance to GNP for cell
service, and food. We drove the Going-to-the-Sun-Road from West
Glacier to St. Mary. We had lunch at the East Glacier Lodge.
What we saw while staying at the Glacier Haven Inn & RV Park.
Red Bus in Glacier National Park. Right, Going-to-the-Sun Road.
Red Bus History: https://www.glaciernationalparklodges.com/red-bus-tours/history/
MacDonald Lake at Apgar Village and MacDonald Falls at the north end of the Lake.
Left, Glacier view along Going-to-the-Sun-Road. Right,
Continental Divide and "Slippery Bill" Morrison plaque (no relations).
Whitefish Amtrak Station and static displays outside. Whitefish also has many places to eat downtown near the station.
East Glacier Big Timber Lodge with several eating choices.
East Glacier Amtrak Station
Train watching from Izaak Walton Inn's pedestrian bridge and porch and many other spots between East and West Glacier.
The Glacier Haven Inn website lists even more local activities at: https://glacierhavenresort.com/area-attractions/
Amtrak Empire Builder arriving September 21, 2021, 7:40 pm in Essex, Montana, flag stop to take us to Portland, Oregon, to board the Coast Starlight back to home in Orange County, California.
Click any map above for a larger copy.
Left, Closest to Essex Amtrak stop. Center shows Pinnacle and
Glacier Haven Inn 7 miles northwest. Right, Proximity to Glacier
Not shown in the maps above are West Glacier Amtrak stop and East
Glacier Amtrak stop, each about 30-some miles on each side of Essex.
Glacier Haven Inn and RV Park is at Pinnacle, just 7 miles northwest on Hwy. 2 from this Amtrak stop.
Thank you to Darren and MaLi Olson. Staying in the Glacier Haven Inn was like walking into a new home.