Backcountry Preservation

Newly installed bear box at Fifty Mtn campground

The Volunteer Associates contributes to backcountry experience in this majestic national park by maintaining backcountry trails, campsites and structures.

In 1993, the Backcountry Preservation Fund was established solely to protect and preserve Glacier’s backcountry, which is being visited at an ever-increasing rate.  The Fund supplements federal appropriations and backcountry user fees to extend and enhance backpackers’ experiences in Glacier National Park.

Lowrider toilet installed at Upper Nyack campground

In addition to fundraising and managing the Fund, the Volunteer Associates also contributes to much of the field work.  Groups of our volunteers are regularly asked to spend a few days in the backcountry, painting cabins, shelters and fire lookouts.

Last year we relocated the food preparation area at Fifty Mountain Campground and upgraded toilet facilities at 10 backcountry sites.

Next summer we will be funding and working on one or more of the following:

  • Restoring/Replacing the Mineral Creek Suspension Bridge.
  • Rerouting Triple Divide Trail to decrease steepness by addition of 2 switchbacks.
  • Enhancing Trout Lake Trailhead to stabilize an area of erosion and add off-road parking.

We also help park staff rehabilitate and stabilize historic structures such as homestead cabins in the North Fork area of the park, backcountry ranger stations and patrol cabins, barns and bridges.

(l-r) Building new food prep area at Fifty Mtn campground (first 2 photos), new tent site at Fifty Mtn campground