• Activities:

    Stand Up Paddle, Camping, Fishing, Backpacking

  • Skill Level:

    Intermediate

  • Season:

    Summer

Bathrooms
Beach
Lake
Picnic Area
Scenic

Enjoy scenic stand up paddle boarding and backcountry camping in Glacier National Park.

Paddle across gorgeous Lake McDonald in Glacier National Park to a secluded rocky beach for the day, or stay the night at the backcountry camp site just 20 steps from the water. Leave the car just one mile down from Sprague Creek Campground at the pull-off, and SUP, kayak, or canoe across the lake to the tiny peninsula on the Northwest shoreline.

Reservations for the backcountry campsite can be made at the permit office in Apgar Village, or check availability online: nps.gov

The backcountry site has a fire ring, tent sites, and a pit toilet. This is a perfect place to sleep out under the stars if weather permits. Don't forget to hang all food products at the provided hanging pole to keep out of reach of critters both small and large.

Head out early in the day to avoid choppy water, the earlier the better.

Pack List

  • Water vessel: paddle board, kayak, canoe
  • Personal Flotation Device (required on board)
  • Dry bag
  • Plenty of food
  • Water filter
  • Camping gear if staying over night
  • Camera
  • Fishing pole (fishing in National Park is free)
  • Bear spray
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Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More

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Paddling across the lake will make you feel like a sucker for all the times you made this trip hiking 6 flat dusty miles to the backcountry campsite. Paddle your gear to the camp spot and enjoy the scenery and the only burn in your shoulders from the sunshine on your back and not the pack straps of your overloaded pack!

over 2 years ago
over 2 years ago

Noah Couser Explorer

I'm a professional photographer living and working in Whitefish, Montana. I travel as much as I can with my beautiful wife Megan, and am always scheming a new adventure, or a new way to do an old trip. My passion is the outdoors, and getting people excited about recreating outside. By day, I teach PE and health at the local middle school, by night, I fight crime in a spandex jumpsuit... not really, but I do enjoy taking lots of pictures and working for cool outdoor companies when not at school throwing dodge balls at 8th graders.

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