This loop will take you through British Columbia, Alberta and Montana. Wildlife is everywhere. Postcard scenes from every window. Hop out of your car, gain a viewpoint that hangs over an unblemished emerald lake, settle into a 100 year old lodge and bask in the magic of the mountains. This is ‘out there’ exploration at its best.
If you are a U.S. visitor travelling from the south, begin your tour in Columbia Falls. This pretty village has a wide array of parks and natural spaces to enjoy such as the River’s Edge Park on the banks of the Flathead River. The Columbia Falls Market is one of the most popular in the valley.
Columbia Falls to Whitefish is 9 km / 5 mi.
Whitefish offers a quaint downtown with boutique shopping. Explore the Whitefish Trail, moments from town. If you are a railroad buff, you’ll love the historic Great Northern Railway Depot. It’s the busiest Amtrak stop between Seattle and Minneapolis. The depot doubles as Whitefish Museum.
Travel north on Highway #93 to Eureka and the Canada (Roosville) / US border (123 km / 76 mi)
Eureka, located in the Tobacco River Valley, offers wonderful walks by the river. Stop for a delicious old-time milkshake at Cafe Jax.
Canada / US border to Fernie is 68 km / 42 mi.
Continue northeast on Highway #3. Fernie is fully encircled by the majestic Rocky Mountains, making it a bucket-list location for adventurers and sightseers. World-class fly-fishing, thrilling whitewater rafting and a hiking and biking trail network complement its eclectic arts community.
Highway #3, Sparwood to Pincher Creek is 81 km / 50 mi.
From Pincher Creek take Highway #6 south to Waterton (50 km / 31 mi).
Waterton to Babb, south on Highway #17 and #89 is 51 km / 32 mi.
Note: Chief Mountain border crossing is closed Oct to mid-May.
Waterton to Babb, via Cardston Highway #5 and #89 is 87 km / 54 mi.
The Going-to-the-Sun Road is a spectacular 85 km / 53 mi paved two-lane highway that bisects Glacier National Park east and west. It spans the width of the park, crossing the Continental Divide at 2,000 m (6,646 ft) high Logan Pass. Scenic viewpoints line the road. It’s worth travelling the road in each direction as the views are equally stunning.