Columbia Falls is the official gateway to Glacier National Park, both as the route to West Glacier and also the entrance for the more rustic route up the North Fork Road. Not surprisingly then, it caters to families. Here you’ll find outfitters for rafting, Big Sky Waterpark and the ever-popular Amazing Fun Center (the name pretty much says it all). Columbia Falls also has its share of family events. If you happen in the last week of July you can celebrate Heritage Days and just about any summer weekend you can catch a concert in Marnatette Park.
DAY-VENTURING IN COLUMBIA FALLS
ACTIVITIES YOU’LL LOVE
Hungry Horse Dam and Reservoir — Part of the Flathead National Forest, the reservoir was created in 1953 after the construction of the Dam, the upper most dam in the Columbia River hydro-power system. There are many hidden bays that provide solitude and great fishing. Camping and recreations sites including boat launch areas are scattered around the reservoir. Information can be obtained by calling the Hungry Horse District office 406-387-3800.
Big Sky Waterpark — Montana’s largest waterpark, Big Sky has 10 slides, whirlpool, kids activity pool, picnic grounds, barbecue area, beach volleyball and concessions. A great way to spend a warm summer day in the Flathead.
36 Holes of golf — Start with a morning tee time at Meadow Lake Resort a leading 18-hole championship course quoted by Golf Magazine as a “must play.” Then grab lunch at the course restaurant before heading over to Glacier View, an 18-hole course with great views, affordable rates, and Family Tee for younger junior golfers.
Amazing Fun Center — Located just north of Columbia Falls on the way to West Glacier is the Fun Center. A great place to stop with energetic kids to enjoy the Glacier Maze, bumper boats, go carts and mini golf.
Glacier Outdoor Center — Glacier Raft Company offers rafting trips for all ages and levels. Take a trip down the scenic Middle Fork of the Flathead River along the southern edge of the Park. You’ll discover great scenery, several moderate rapids and fun for the whole family.
ROUTE YOU’LL TAKE
From Kalispell drive north on Highway 2 for 15 miles into downtown Columbia Falls. Drive time is about 20 minutes.
LINKS YOU’LL FIND HELPFUL
Meadow Lake Golf Course
Glacier View Golf Course
Big Sky Waterpark
Amazing Fun Center
Glacier Raft Company
Glacier Guides Montana Raft Company
Great Northern Resort
Swan Mountain Outfitters
Glacier Distilling Company