Goat Haunt Mountain (GNP)

Page Type Page Type: Mountain/Rock
Location Lat/Lon: 48.95083°N / 113.84861°W
Additional Information County: Glacier
Activities Activities: Mountaineering
Seasons Season: Summer, Fall
Additional Information Elevation: 8641 ft / 2634 m
Sign the Climber's Log


This peak is often bypassed by hikers heading into the park at the Goat Haunt port of entry since they are focused on distant destinations such as Fifty Mountain Camp or Boulder Pass. It offers exceptional views of the N face of Mt Cleveland as well as Waterton lake and Olson creek leading up to Brown Pass. The climb from Goat Haunt is about 3 miles to the summit and some 4,400’ vertical and is no more than Class 3. The climbers guide shown below offers a good description of the Ridge Route. There are some camping shelters at Goat Haunt if you decide to spend a night. Reservations are suggested since this is a busy location for people entering and exiting the park on backpacking journeys.

Guidebook: A Climber’s Guide to Glacier National Park

Getting There

Goat Haunt Mountain (GNP)Waterton Lake from the summit
Glacier National Park is located in the NW part of the state and extends up to the Canadian border which it shares with Waterton National Park of Canada. The nearest airport is Kalispell. Amtrac stations are in Whitefish, W Glacier and E Glacier. Depending on your travel plans, it may be worthwhile to fly to Spokane, WA and pick up a rental vehicle. Some rentals there may be more user friendly on multiple state use and mileage allowances as well as price.

To reach the trailhead, the best approach is to take the Chief Mountain Highway north of St Mary on the eastern boundary of the park. This will give you outstanding views of Chief Mountain as you travel north to the border crossing on the way to Waterton. From there you can take a boat ride on the International to Goat Haunt ranger station where you reenter the US at the dock. An alternative is an 8 mile hike around the north shore of the lake. When I took said trail in 2002, I had a brief description of the trail from the rangers which indicated that the total elevation gain/loss was several feet, but they failed to account for several significant hills resulting in perhaps 1,200 feet of difference between the start and finish! The boat is a very nice alternative, but runs on a sporadic schedule during the summer months and is not in service in the winter and spring.

Red Tape

Registration for day climbs in Glacier National Park is recommended, but not mandatory.

National Park entrance fees apply in Glacier National Park. See Entrance Fees

Waterton Lakes National Park entrance fees.
See Entrance fees (Canadian $)

Passports should be taken CPB if you are entering Canada to pass through Waterton and return via Goat Haunt. The western approaches do not quite reach the Canadian border. Also, firearms and fireworks are not allowed to be transported into Canada and there have been issues with bear spray occasionally in the past.

Route Description

From Goat Haunt take the old trail to the site of the former fire lookout on a grassy shelf above the lake. Follow a dry streambed 1,600' up to the ridgetop. Follow the ridge south to a broad saddle. Beyond this point the ridge becomes difficult and is easier to traverse on the south(right) side for a bit before regaining the ridgetop beyond the steep cliffs. When the ridge turns east toward the base of the mountain work over to the south slope which provides an easy scramble to the top.


There are many camping sites available at Glacier Park; backcountry, as well as car camping. Due to the large number of grizzly and even larger number of black bears who inhabit the area, there are strict guidelines for storage of food. Most of the backcountry campgrounds have facilities for hanging your food from cables or bearproof poles, but you need adequate lines to hoist your packs, etc 15 or 20 feet off the ground. If you are seeking an “undesignated area” camping permit, the rangers may require you to use a bear barrel to protect your food. When we backpacked in to Buffalo Woman Lake, they loaned us a bear barrel since they did not think we could find adequate tree limbs for hanging our food, etc. Hanging your packs is a good idea, since I have seen damaged packs from chewing by rodents. The GNP rangers require you to view an informational video annually before you can purchase your first backcountry permit.

GNP Campground Status and Infor

Backcountry Camping Info

Backcountry Camping Sites

External Links and Guidebooks

Glacier Mountaineers Society

Guidebook: A Climber’s Guide to Glacier National Park

Trail guide: Hiking Glacier and Waterton Lakes National Parks

Additions and CorrectionsPost an Addition or Correction

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Tracy - Feb 15, 2008 5:07 pm - Voted 10/10

elevation correction

It appears from looking at the topomap the elevation needs to be corrected to reflect an elevation of 8641 feet. By the way, Great page and write up! Did you used to live close to GNP?


jimegan - Feb 15, 2008 6:10 pm - Hasn't voted

Re: elevation correction

Thanks for the heads up! I used my copy of Edward's guide which I have now corrected. Used to live in Whitefish, MT and get to the park every Thursday and most weekends when conditions permitted.

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