Once I climbed Nice Northern on a cloudy summer season day in 2014, I used to be super-impressed by the number of circumstances alongside the 2-mile ridge to the summit – largely good path, with some scrambling, a pair brief class 3 climbs, and a good quantity of publicity. I hoped to do it once more with pals, however particularly needed to climb it with my adventurous daughter Amy. I’m again to instructing in Hays in a pair weeks (8/13/22), so once we came upon that she had Monday off (8/1/22) we determined to go for it. I drove over to spend Sunday evening along with her in Missoula, then we left her home at 5:30 am Monday, made the 145-mile drive to the trailhead, and began climbing at 8:30 am.
Piece of cake?
Nice Northern Mountain is a wonderful peak located between Hungry Horse Reservoir and the southwestern fringe of Glacier Park. It’s a dusty 16-mile drive on a corrugated gravel highway from Freeway #2 to the trailhead. From there, it’s simply 4 miles to the summit with the final 2.5 miles alongside a spectacular ridge that gives incredible views of Glacier Park and Hungry Horse Reservoir. So, you’re considering “signal me up,” proper? . . . Not so quick. The opposite necessary element is that you’ll be ascending virtually 5,000 ft over these 4 miles, with half of that (2,500 ft) coming within the first 1.5 miles – one of many steepest stretches of path you’ll discover anyplace!
When you can deal with the brutal first 1.5 miles, the slope turns into extra cheap for the ultimate 2.5 miles, plus you’ll be rewarded by superb views the remainder of the way in which. The path is usually discernable, however you’ll must make just a few decisions (climber trails) and should do some scrambling and climbing to navigate each the false summit and the precise one. Remember the fact that you’re going to must stroll down these final steep 1.5 miles of path on drained legs – for me (by far) essentially the most difficult a part of the day. I’ve wholesome knees, however my quads have been spent by the point we reached the automotive. Don’t try when you have knee points, and if you happen to go, be certain that your boots have loads of house to maintain your toes glad – and trim these nails earlier than you begin! (Picture Tour)
Picked a winner.
Regardless of the warmth wave that inundated a lot of Montana and the massive Elmo 2 Hearth on the southwestern edge Flathead Lake (40 miles SSW of us), we loved snug temperatures and clear skies, and there was simply sufficient breeze to maintain the bugs away. Regardless of the depressing last 1.5 miles right down to the trailhead, it was an incredible day! We obtained again to the automotive at 3:45 pm.