You may be planning your first trip to Glacier National Park and the more you research and plan, the more you realize that not only do you need a park pass to enter, you need a reservation as well!
Why do I need one? How do I get one? When do I need one? What does it do? How can I get in without a reservation?
Hopefully you'll find all the answers to your questions here!
First things first, at the time of this blog posting, Glacier National Park has not let out any new information regarding the reservation system in 2024. All of this information is based off of the previous years and what we should expect for this upcoming year. For the most up to date information, click here!
What is a reservation ticket and what does it do?
A reservation ticket allows you access into specific areas of the park, at a specific date and time.
In summer 2023, a vehicle reservation was required for four areas of the park: Going-to-the-Sun Road, the North Fork, Two Medicine, and Many Glacier.
In the past, you could purchase these reservations in advance, to secure your trip into GNP. In 2023, they were 4-month advance tickets. These tickets are limited and you will need to keep an eye on the website, or this blog to let you know when you need to be in front of your computer, ready to click book. If you were unable to secure your tickets then, you can still get tickets but the only ones available are the 24-hour advance tickets. Meaning you would need to be on their website, right at 8am the day before your planned trip into GNP.
It is unclear if the reservation system will be the same or updated for 2024.
How do I get one?
This is the OFFICIAL site and the only place you should be buying these tickets: recreation.gov
Now the Park Passes are different and extremely easy to get. All you need to do is drive up to the gate that you need to pass through anyways and purchase one.
How do I get into the park without a reservation ticket?
May 26 through September 10 reservations were required for Going-To-The-Sun Road westside entrances and the North Fork from 6am to 3pm.
July 1 through September 10 reservations were required for east side entrance including Many Glacier, Two Medicine, and Going-To-The-Sun Road from Rising Sun from 6am to 3pm
2024, I would expect similar dates and times.
What this means is, for example, after September 10th, 2023, no reservations are required to enter at any time. But, between May and September they were required. Unless you are able to get in before 6am or after 3pm.
Keep in mind... The sun doesn't set until about 10-11pm in the middle of the summer. So visiting the park in the afternoon may be worth it!
Stay tuned for updates!
Stay warm this winter!