Welcome, fall! Once overlooked as a mere “shoulder season” sandwiched between two blockbusters, autumn is finally getting its due in the Flathead Valley and beyond. Known in Montana as the “local’s season,” fall is when the big crowds disperse and those who live here have the place to themselves. In honor of today being the first day of fall, we wanted to let you in on the secret.
“I probably shouldn’t be telling you any of this,” is how Kalispell reporter Justin Franz begins his recent Washington Post story about fall in Glacier National Park, which is in the Flathead Valley’s backyard.
“Last year,” Franz continues, “more than 2.9 million people visited Glacier National Park in the northwest corner of Montana, most of them between Memorial Day and Labor Day. In recent years, it’s been normal for nearly a million people to visit the park in July alone.
“Of course, in a 1 million-acre park, one would think there would be enough room for everyone to stretch their legs in peace. But much of the park is wild and remote, meaning hundreds of thousands of people are crammed into a few easily accessible areas, such as the legendary Going-to-the-Sun Road, a tight alpine highway that stretches 50 miles across the park. On a sunny Saturday in the middle of summer, it’s not uncommon for the line of cars at the park entrance to stretch for miles.
“That’s why most locals — myself included — elect to visit the park after the hordes of summer visitors have packed up their hiking and selfie sticks and headed home. We know the best time of year to visit Glacier Park is during the quiet days of autumn, when visitation drops like a rock through clear Lake McDonald, the largest body of water in the park.”
Aside from visiting Glacier National Park, fall is a great time in the Flathead Valley for corn mazes, apple picking, Oktoberfest, yellow leaf-peeping, and more. To learn more about living here (during fall or any other time of the year!) contact our local offices. And you can always browse online, for Whitefish Montana real estate, Kalispell real estate, Lakeside Montana real estate, Bigfork real estate, Polson real estate, and more.
PHOTO: Flathead Valley living, featuring 111 Stageline Court, Whitefish. For more information, contact Keven Guercio at (406) 250-7847.