Accommodations may vary based on departure date. Any difference from what is listed below can be found by clicking on your desired date on the View Scheduled Dates or Private Dates tabs.
Lake McDonald Lodge
Glacier National Park (1 night)
Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, with a large stone fireplace in the lobby and a terrace overlooking the lake.
Many Glacier Hotel
Glacier National Park (1 night)
An early-1900s Swiss chalet-style hotel set on the shore of Swiftcurrent Lake amid the peaks of Many Glacier Valley.
Prince of Wales Hotel
Waterton Lakes National Park (2 nights)
This historic green-gabled hotel offers vistas of the mountains reflected in glacier-fed lakes.
Glacier Park Lodge
Glacier National Park (1 night)
Located on the park's eastern edge in Blackfeet country; immense timbers hold aloft its expansive lobby ceiling. (pool, spa)
This Trip Is Rated Levels 1-4
Every Backroads trip is designed to appeal to a wide variety of interests and fitness levels. We know your pace may vary from one day to the next—and your traveling companion's may differ somewhat from yours. So we present a range of mileage options, and each day you decide exactly what and how much you want to do.
Daily Route Options (drag to see full )
|Daily Route Options
||Horseback Ride & Cookout (4 Hours)
||Optional Activities in Waterton Lakes National Park: Hiking, Biking, Horseback Riding, Fishing, Kayaking or Boat Cruise (All Day)
||Optional Scenic Boat Ride on Two Medicine Lake (1 Hour)
||On the Flathead River (3 Hours)
On this Family Trip, liberal van shuttling is incorporated into the itinerary and mileage is moderate to enable you to spend more time exploring on your own.
* Includes shuttle.
Learn more about how we determine our activity level and fully support a range of abilities and interests.
Please note that our distance and elevation figures come from Ride with GPS. Other sources (such as Map My Ride and Garmin devices) may give differing elevation figures due to different GPS and mapping technologies. Readings from a Garmin or a smart phone are influenced by other factors such as air pressure.
All breakfasts, 6 lunches, 4 dinners
Available Bike Options
The key to a stellar day’s ride is a bike that’s perfectly in tune with your cycling style… Backroads has you covered with the best bike fleet in the world! Read on for your available bike options for this trip.
Backroads Titanium Bikes (Included in your trip price)
Our custom-built titanium bikes are specially designed for you—and we offer different models for varied terrain so your bike is ideally suited to the region. Our custom-made bikes are included in your trip price.
Touring Bike (Included)
Custom Kids Bikes (Included in your trip price)
Backroads is the only travel company to manufacture its own line of kid's bikes. While the wheels might be small, the performance is big—it's the perfect choice for kids. On all Backroads Family Trips, you'll find 20" and 24" bicycles for the younger set. They say good things come in small packages; when it comes to bikes for kids of all ages, Backroads is the expert.
Custom Kids Bikes (Included)
Burley Kazoo trailer bike (Included in your trip price)
The Burley Kazoo trailer bike, for children up to 85 pounds, attaches to an adult bike with your child providing some of the pedal power for a real team effort! It's ideal for kids who may be comfortable pedaling around the neighborhood but aren't yet ready for bike touring.
Burley Cub trailer (Included)
Burley Cub trailer (Included in your trip price)
The Burley Cub trailer, for one or two children 60 pounds and under, is sturdy carrier that attaches to our bikes. It provides a comfortable and safe ride in the spacious interior with inner pockets for snacks and drinks, a reclining seat with a secure five point padded harness system and an adjustable sunscreen.
Burley Cub trailer
- Expertise and services of our experienced Trip Leaders
- Snacks and beverages between meals
- Additional guides and experts from the region on many trips
- Van shuttles to support a variety of route options
- Comprehensive Travel Planner with detailed pre-trip information
- Private guided tours at museums, historic sites, wineries and other select attractions as noted in the Travel Planner
- All gratuities at hotels and restaurants
- Special events, including wine tastings and other select attractions as mentioned in the Travel Planner
- On biking and multi-adventure trips, use of fully equipped Backroads titanium bike plus helmet and accessories
- Trailercycles, carriers, and kid-sized helmets for Family Trips
- Equipment and experienced guides for kayaking, rafting, snorkeling, sailing and canoeing as described
- Park and other entry fees
- Fares for trains, ferries and other modes of travel as listed in the Travel Planner
- Select coach transfers
- Baggage transfers and porterage
Get the Straight Talk about This Trip
We want to make sure you're on the right trip and that you have the best experience possible. Every Backroads trip is unique and this one is no exception.
Our accommodations are authentic and rustic lodges that reflect the natural surroundings of Glacier and Waterton Lakes National Parks. The buildings were constructed at the turn of the century and have been only minimally renovated over the years, in accordance with National Park regulations. While these historic hotels offer simpler accommodations than is typical of Backroads lodging, they do provide unparalleled access to the best routes in the region. Please note that the guest rooms are basic and are not equipped with televisions, hair dryers or air-conditioning. Generally speaking, customer service in the national parks can seem slow and casual when compared with the high standards of hospitality found on other Backroads trips.
Why Travel with Backroads in Glacier and Waterton Lakes
Sneak Your Family across the Border
Beyond the obvious opportunity to explore some spectacular landscapes, the idea behind this trip is simple: why show your kids just one renowned park when you can explore two – and cross an international boundary in the bargain? Discover Glacier National Park on the Montana side of the Rockies , then cross the U.S.-Canada border into equally stunning Waterton Lakes – and in both countries, stay at historic park lodges that are typically booked-up far in advance.
Everyone at Their Own Pace
We design and support our Glacier and Waterton Lakes trips to suit mixed abilities and varied interests—so you can set your own pace, then change things up as the day unfolds. And all guests are free to do the same, traveling together or apart, with no one cramping anyone else's style. Which sounds easy in theory, but it's hard to pull off. Here's more on how we do it.
More Leaders to Support You
On our Glacier and Waterton Lakes trips we have an extra leader supporting you along the road and trail—for a total of three, compared to the industry standard two. So we can be in more places at once, giving personal attention to guests traveling at their own pace. Here's more on our Trip Leaders.
Leaders Focused on Families
When everyone's together, there's lots going on; and when kids' and adults' priorities diverge, it can seem like two different trips. That's why our Family Adventures in Glacier and Waterton Lakes have three Trip Leaders—including a dedicated Kids Activity Expert who regularly takes younger travelers off to do their own thing. Other companies try to get by with two leaders; we step up and do it right. For more on our family focus, check this out.
A Second Van When You Need It
Backroads is the only active travel company providing two support vans in Glacier and Waterton Lakes—because we know it's essential to ensure a truly great travel experience. It doubles our ability to be there when you need us to offer hydration, lighten your load or give you a lift if it's time to take a break. Read more on why two vans make all the difference.
Your Trip Will Run. Period.
Under our Book with Confidence policy, your Backroads trip will run even for a single family of three or four people, subject to a nominal extra fee. Or transfer to another trip, and we'll give you a credit. It's all part of our trademark commitment to treating guests with integrity, transparency and total accountability. Read all the details.
Plenty of Kids on Your Trip
It may be hard to imagine being on a family trip with no other families on it—but it happens regularly with some companies. On a Backroads Family Adventure there are typically several families on each departure, creating more opportunities for your kids to make new friends as they try fun things together – which is a big part of the experience.
Like You, We're Family Experts
At Backroads we've honed our expertise in active family travel over many years and a lot of trips. We host at least 20 times more family guests than any other active company, so we're constantly gaining new insights that make our trips even better. Detailed planning, behind-the scenes logistics, unrivaled support from three Trip Leaders—all backed by a team that proudly creates the kind of experiences we'd want to share with our own families.
Custom-Designed Bikes for Kids
Only Backroads provides bikes specifically designed for younger riders. Find out more information on all of our kids' bikes and optional accessories. And check out Tom Hale's blog post about biking with your kids.
Signature Backroads Picnics
Guests rave about our picnic spreads. Enjoy a welcome break in a scenic spot, or a quick refuel stop if you don't want to lose momentum. And because we have two vans, one can host lunch while the other is out providing support along the route.
We Know Where We're Going
Tom Hale has been keeping Backroads on track, with one eye on the horizon, since 1979. His passion for active travel, and for ensuring the highest-quality travel experience, is evident in every detail we add to make a guest's trip unforgettable—and the fact he's right there in the office, making it happen. To hear Tom describe his vision, watch our video.
The Value of Casual Hotels
In addition to the ideal balance of comfort and hospitality in our choice of lodgings, this trip featuring Casual Hotels includes nearly all of your meals, plus everything from cocktail receptions to the best snacks along the road. So there's rarely a need to reach for your wallet – we've got you covered.