Discover Hidden Falls in Montana: Things to See and Do

Can you picture standing before a majestic 25-foot waterfall? Well, prepare to experience it firsthand. Hidden Falls, nestled within a vast network of trails, lakes, and mountain vistas, offers more than its enchanting name implies — it caters to everyone.

As we prepare for our journey, let’s embrace the serene challenge of the Hidden Falls trail. But don’t underestimate what lies ahead; it’s truly breathtaking. You’ll be amazed at how easily accessible the natural beauty of the wilderness is. All you need is your sense of adventure and a well-prepared daypack, and you’ll be ready to embark on this adventure.

This detailed journey will equip you with essential information to maximize your experience. Hidden Falls isn’t just for hiking enthusiasts — it’s for everyone seeking tranquil beauty or a new exploration spot. Are you ready to experience Hidden Falls in Montana? Let’s get started!

7 Key Takeaways on Hidden Falls

  1. Hidden Falls offers a fairy-tale-like scene and access to other iconic features like Lake Josephine and the Grinnell Glacier Trail. It’s a convenient, family-friendly hike suitable for various ages and fitness levels.
  2. The trail, starting near Many Glacier Hotel, provides a scenic, 7.5-mile round trip. Shuttle boat options and well-placed facilities make the journey more manageable. The trail features vibrant landscapes and even offers a bonus hike to Grinnell Lake.
  3. Hidden Falls is just one part of an extensive network of lakes within Glacier National Park. Visitors can easily explore nearby lakes like Lake Josephine and Swiftcurrent Lake, each offering distinct beauty.
  4. It’s recommended to bring sturdy footwear, weather-appropriate attire, snacks, hydration, emergency gear, and sun protection. As with any outdoor adventure, it’s best to hike with a companion.
  5. The Falls encapsulate the serene yet adventurous spirit of Glacier National Park. The accessibility, combined with outstanding natural beauty and thoughtful trail features, makes it a must-visit for nature lovers of all kinds.
  6. Alongside its natural beauty, Hidden Falls serves as a reminder of the importance of preserving national parks for future generations. Visitors are encouraged to be responsible stewards of the park and its natural wonders.
  7. If you’re a nature enthusiast or a casual hiker, a visit to Hidden Falls promises an unforgettable experience. With the right preparation and a spirit of curiosity, Hidden Falls invites you to immerse yourself in its gentle tranquility and breathtaking sights.

About Hidden Falls

Location CoordinatesElevationNearby FeaturesLocation
48.76595° N, 113.69569° W4,967 feet (1514 meters)Lake Josephine, Grinnell Glacier Trail, Swiftcurrent Lake, Cataract Creek, Many Glacier HotelGlacier National Park, Glacier County, Mont

Glacier National Park is truly a scenic marvel. It’s not just about the iconic Grinnell Glacier Trail, but also the unmissable Lake Josephine and Swiftcurrent Lake, both surrounded by really amazing mountain views.

You can easily get there by following a trail from Lake Josephine. Don’t worry about the name “hidden” – it’s not hard to find at all. It’s a great hike for families, and people of all ages can do it. You can start from Many Glacier Hotel and take a shuttle or walk to the trailhead.

It’s one of those unexpected moments in life that you’ll always remember. So why not make Hidden Falls your next adventure?

Hiking Trails in Hidden Falls

A hiker traverses the Hidden Falls trail in Glacier National Park, surrounded by towering trees.

The Hidden Falls trail is a perfect choice for most visitors to Glacier National Park, offering an easy and moderately short hike with breathtaking views. The trailhead is conveniently located near Swiftcurrent Lake at the south end of Many Glacier Hotel.

This hike is about 7.5 miles long if you walk the entire way, but you can shorten it by taking shuttle boats at Swiftcurrent Lake and Lake Josephine. When you start, take the trail that goes off to the right from the south end of Lake Josephine. Follow this path until you reach the Grinnell Glacier Trail, then continue straight ahead to Hidden Falls.

Along the way, you’ll be treated to stunning views of the surrounding mountains. The trail winds through a quiet forest with small streams and patches of thimbleberry bushes. Before reaching the falls, there’s a short, steep ascent after a specific trail junction, so be prepared for that.

Facilities along the trail include pit toilets about 2/3 of a mile from the boat dock, so keep an eye out for those if you need a break. You’ll also come across a suspension bridge that crosses Cataract Creek, followed by a side trail leading to Hidden Falls shortly after the bridge.

Distance on Boat2.5 miles roundtrip
Distance on Foot7.5+ miles roundtrip
Elevation Gain250 feet
Challenge RatingEasy

Below is a table detailing the fees associated with visiting Glacier National Park and using the shuttle boats:

Entrance Fee$30 (Summer Season), $20 (Winter Season)
Shuttle Boat Fee$10 – $40

After soaking in the breathtaking view of the 25-foot waterfall nestled in the deep gorge carved by Cataract Creek, hikers will have the delightful option of embarking on an easy stroll over to Grinnell Lake.

This trail is a fantastic option for visitors of all ages and abilities who want to experience the natural beauty of Glacier National Park without embarking on a long or strenuous hike.

Lakes Near Hidden Falls

Swiftcurrent Lake, located near Hidden Falls, against a stunning mountain background

Glacier National Park is not just about Hidden Falls; it’s a gateway to a whole network of stunning water bodies like Lake Josephine and Swiftcurrent Lake. Lake Josephine is nestled peacefully near Grinnell Glacier, offering a serene stroll or a ferry ride for those who prefer to glide across the water.

Swiftcurrent Lake, located right by Many Glacier Hotel, beckons visitors with its beauty. You can leisurely walk along its shores or hop on a convenient park shuttle to maximize your time.

And as you venture towards Hidden Falls, you’ll encounter Lake Grinnell, adding to the allure of your journey. These lakes seem like mysterious storytellers, inviting you to contemplate their beauty and depths.

With over 40 lakes spread across the park, each with its charm, you’ll find yourself immersed in a gallery of mountains, water, and sky that harmoniously mingle and clash.

Many of these water wonders are easily accessible by vehicle, requiring just a short jaunt to reach their shores. Others are more secluded, reachable only by hiking trails. Consider all your options and pack your excitement to experience these sparkling marvels from different perspectives.

Get Ready for Your Hidden Falls Adventure

Hidden Falls flows through rock formations and lush greenery in Glacier National Park

Hidden Falls in Glacier National Park is a scenic waterfall that can be accessed via hiking or a combination of a boat ride and a short hike. If you opt for the latter, the Grinnell Glacier Trail offers a delightful mix of adventure and nature with family-friendly options thanks to the boat rides across Lake Josephine and Swiftcurrent Lake.

Here’s a quick checklist to ensure you’re all set for your Hidden Falls adventure:

  1. Footwear – Select footwear with solid ankle and sole support. No, this isn’t a fashion parade; you need a good grip on the trail’s variety of terrains.
  2. Weather – Appropriate Attire: Layering is the key. Montana’s weather can be as unpredictable as your ex’s text; so be prepared for changes throughout the day.
  3. Snacks or Meals – Plan your food strategy based on the duration of your hike. We don’t want any hangry hikers on the trail.
  4. Hydration – Water, water, and more water. We don’t need you turning into a raisin due to Montana’s ever-present dry air.
  5. Emergency Gear – You know the drill – bring a basic first aid kit, a cell phone, matches, and any other gear that could make a difference in an emergency.
  6. Sun Protection – Don’t let the views overshadow your sun safety. Pack and wear sunblock, sunglasses, and a hat to shield yourself.

All said, remember the most important rule of hiking – don’t go alone. This isn’t just a safety note; it’s also more fun to share the journey.

A trip to Hidden Falls is a mix of stunning visuals, family-friendly accessibility, and just the right amount of adventure. Prepare to witness nature’s masterpiece at your own pace, with the appropriate gear to keep you safe and comfortable. 

Hidden Falls Final Thoughts

A up-close view of Hidden Falls' rushing waters cascading through rock formations, surrounded by tall trees

Hidden Falls, where do I even begin? This place manages to capture the entire essence of Glacier National Park. It’s like a magic portal to Mother Nature’s most captivating landscapes, all rolled into one.

Perched so beautifully among Lake Josephine and the Grinnell Glacier Trail, Hidden Falls is a call to adventure wrapped in serene beauty. I couldn’t believe that such a calming place could be so accessible, offering an ideal blend of tranquility and convenience.

The trail itself is an experience — through forests, alongside refreshing streams, and with vistas that could make you stop in your tracks. And when you reach the deep gorge of Cataract Creek and come upon the glistening Hidden Falls.

Combining hiking and the occasional shuttle boat ride makes it a top pick for families and anyone keen on a memorable outdoor stretch. Plus, with well-placed facilities and the option to explore the neighboring Lake Josephine and Swiftcurrent Lake, it’s a complete adventure package.

But let’s not forget — spending time in front of Hidden Falls is more than just a beautiful sight. It’s a gentle nudge to acknowledge the park’s wealth and the responsibility of preserving it for generations to come.

If you’re gearing up for this delightful adventure — plan well, stay curious, and let yourself soak in the tranquility that is Hidden Falls. You’re in for an unforgettable treat, guaranteed.

Hidden Falls FAQs

1. Is Hidden Fall Accessible Through Vehicle?

No, Hidden Falls is not directly accessible by vehicle. Visitors can drive to Many Glacier Hotel and then either take a shuttle boat across Swiftcurrent Lake and Lake Josephine or hike from the nearby trailhead to reach Hidden Falls.

2. Is Hidden Falls Open for Public Viewing?

Yes, Hidden Falls is open for public viewing. Visitors to Glacier National Park can access Hidden Falls via the designated trail, which offers views of the waterfall nestled within Cataract Creek’s deep gorge.

3. What Is the Tallest Waterfall in Montana?

Woodbine Falls, situated near Nye in the rugged Absaroka-Beartooth Wilderness, is the tallest waterfall in Montana, towering at an impressive height of 280 feet.

Hungry for more Montana adventures? Dive into our archives for a wealth of related content:

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Written by:

Ashley Smith
Hello there! I'm Ashley Smith, born on a chilly winter's day, Montana has been my playground since childhood. The first snowfall of the year always brings back memories of building snowmen and winter hikes. Co-founding was my way of sharing the magic of Montana's seasons with the world. While Chris dives deep into the landscapes, I'm obsessed with Montana's rich culture, from the local festivals to the tales passed down generations.

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