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Hundreds of Sun Road tickets still available for Labor Day weekend

by CHRIS PETERSON
Editor | July 21, 2021 9:45 AM

Tickets to drive the Going-to-the-Sun Road this year may be a coveted get, but Glacier Park officials noted last week there are still hundreds available for over the Labor Day weekend.

Labor Day weekend is the last weekend tickets are required.

To get a ticket, go to recreation.gov online and search for “Sun Road tickets.”

Once there, you have to register and then purchase the ticket, which is good through the weekend.

As of presstime several hundred tickets were available each day from Sept. 2 through Labor day.

A ticket costs $2.

Glacier Park officials say the ticketed entry worked as intended this year — smoothing of the visitation patterns on the road through the summer.

The ticketed entry has put the squeeze on other parts of the Park, however. The North Fork entrance saw its busiest June ever, district ranger Jim Dahlstrom told folks at the Interlocal meeting last week.

Two Medicine has also seen a surge in visitation as people who don’t have a ticket end up going somewhere else.

Tickets aren’t required at other entrances to the Park, but park officials still close them when the parking lots reach capacity.

Whether the ticketed entry is put in place next year isn’t quite clear yet. Glacier doesn’t have permission from the Department of Interior brass to continue it next year, Glacier officials note.

This year it was allowed due to the lingering effects of the pandemic, a shortage of staff and construction on Highway 2.

Still, the system has made for a better experience once people are in the park. Trails aren’t nearly as crowded and parking spots can be had for all but the most popular places, like Logan Pass, which has been filling up by 6:15 a.m. most days as people rush to get a parking spot and get into the park before 6 a.m., when tickets aren’t required.

There is talk about expanding the ticketed entry to encompass all entrances to the park, which would, in essence, cap visitation to the park in the busy summer months.