Tuesday, May 25th, 2021

Most Asked About Wildlife of Glacier National Park


And Where You Might Find Them…


What Wildlife Lives in Glacier?

Glacier National Park is home to many wild animals, with over 71 species of mammals, 276 species of birds, dozens of fish, amphibians, thousands of species of insects, and even reptiles! Most of these wild species are uniquely adapted to the high alpine and cold habitats of Glacier National Park. Whether your hiking, driving, or rafting along with us, keep your eyes peeled when you’re in the right areas! Remember, all wildlife deserves are respect and never approach a wild animal.

Three Most Asked about Wildlife of Glacier National Park.

1. Wolves

2. Wolverines

3. Grizzly Bears

1. Glacier National Park’s Elusive Wolves

A wolf running through the snow in glacier national park

How to See A Wolf in Glacier National Park:

Seen individually, in pairs, or in packs, these misunderstood predators roam many places within and around Glacier National Park. These wild animals don’t have set territories within the park, and come and go from the area as they follow the elk herds seasonally. Seen commonly near lower McDonald Lake area, Apgar, the North Fork area, and neighboring National Forest Service lands. Sometimes in winter, we can hear them howling at the moon. Rather than try to spot a wolf in the park, spend your time trying to see Elk… you might get lucky and spot a pack following them.


2. Glacier National Park’s Solitary Wolverines

Gulo gulo! This wolverine tromping through the snow. Want to see one in glacier national park?

How to See A Wolverine in Glacier National Park:

Seen commonly near the alpine or rocky landscapes. These members of the weasel family can cover some ground! If you spot one count yourself incredibly lucky. Some of us have been exploring Glacier National Park for decades and have never seen this wild animal.

You may be able to see a Wolverine in the forests and valley bottoms as they cross from one set of mountains to another. They’re incredibly solitary though and go out of their way to avoid humans; although, they are also known to sometimes travel in family groups or mating pairs. We’ve also often heard of folks seeing them at Logan Pass or along the Siyeh trail.

GNP supports the largest core population of wolverines in the lower 48 (approx. 50 individuals).


3. Glacier National Park’s Mighty Grizzly Bears

Want to see a Grizzly Bear like this big fella in glacier park?

How to See A Grizzly Bear in Glacier National Park:

Glacier is home to a healthy population of these majestic and powerful wild animals. They favor many habitats, from dense forests to open meadows, and go where their food sources are available. In the summer, you can often see them in high mountain meadows digging up grubs, roots, and gorging on huckleberries. In the fall, you can see them near the rivers for the fall spawning of trout species. You can see a Grizzly Bear in most areas of Glacier National Park, but Many Glacier is often the most common valley to see one.


Other Glacier National Park wildlife:

  • Bull Trout
  • Mountain Goats
    • Often seen in herds or small groups.
    • Areas like Logan Pass are an almost guaranteed place to spot them.
  • American Dippers
    • Look for them in calm waters having a bath and bouncing around.
  • Osprey
    • Watch the skies for these amazing avians soaring over you. We often see them on our raft trips. They sometimes dive into the river to go after a fish.
  • Lynx
    • This member of the cat family might even be harder to see than a wolverine. Watch the trees as you hike Glacier’s forest. They often have a favorite they hang out in.

On your next Glacier Park Rafting trip be sure to ask your guide for their stories of wolves, wolverines, and bears. They might just tell you the secrets on where to find Glacier National Park’s most fantastic beasts.


We hope you’ll consider joining Glacier Raft Company for a trip down the river. Our attention to detail along with a strong emphasis on safety, experience, and customer service make us the perfect match for your family or group whitewater rafting experience. 



Images used in this entry  were obtained from Wikimedia, and are the works of National Park Employees

7 responses to “Most Asked About Wildlife of Glacier National Park”

  1. Adam P says:

    Where would be the best opportunity to sight a wolverine?


  2. Joseph says:

    Wish to come to Glacier to SEE & HEAR WOLVES
    and Grizzly Bear, and other wildlife.


  3. Joseph says:

    Wish to come to Glacier to SEE & HEAR WOLVES
    and Grizzly Bear.


  4. Susan Marsteller says:

    Besides not leaving food out, how can we be safe in the park from these amazing, but dangerous creatures?

  5. Becky Perry says:

    Carry bear spray and know how to use it.

  6. […] Wolves are an exciting animal to see while at Glacier, especially since they can be challenging to spot. They like to travel in packs, so if you see one, there’s likely more nearby. The wolves in this park primarily hang out near lower McDonald Lake, Apgar Lake, and North Fork Lake.    […]

  7. Evie says:

    On my first trip to Montana….My husband said “oh don’t worry about bears you won’t even see one.” Well we saw two very good sized black bears. One bathing in the water on our white water rafting trip and one on a trail hike about 200’ from us.
    Bring bear spray just in case!
    I must say it was absolutely amazing to see them!

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