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The Glacier Institute

Outdoor Adventures, Guide or Outfitter
Discovery Week Participants at Grinnell Glacier

Learn and adventure in the wildest corners of Glacier National Park.

Since 1983, The Glacier Institute, a private nonprofit, has been providing hands-on, field-based educational adventures to people from all over the world in nature’s wildest places: Glacier National Park and the Flathead National Forest, located within the Crown of the Continent ecosystem. The Institute is an equal opportunity provider of education. Join an educational adventure for an immersive experience in the Crown of the Continent ecosystem and the beautiful wilderness of Northwest Montana.

The Glacier Institute provides adult field courses at the Field Camp and teen and youth courses at the Big Creek Outdoor Education Center, including camps for backpacking, fly-fishing, young naturalists, and field courses in ecology, geology, cultural history and more. All proceeds from courses and donations directly support outdoor education programs for local students.

The Big Creek Outdoor Education Center, a historic Flathead National Forest Ranger Station, is located along the Wild and Scenic North Fork of the Flathead River adjacent to Glacier National Park, a twenty-minute drive from West Glacier. The Big Creek campus includes two bunkhouses with bathrooms, a main dining hall (which can accommodate up to forty people), a meeting room, a large classroom, a twenty-foot tepee and additional teaching space. Big Creek is off-the-grid, and relies on solar power for the summer months.

Big Creek is home to Youth Science Adventure Camps, Discovery School and numerous adult field courses that operate under a special use permit with the Flathead National Forest.

The Glacier Park Field Camp, a National Park Service facility operated by the Glacier Institute, is located just inside the West Glacier entrance of Glacier National Park on a bluff overlooking the Middle Fork of the Flathead River. Field Camp has five cabins for student housing, a community kitchen where students can store and cook food, an energy efficient bathhouse with hot showers, a classroom and the Morris Brown Myerowitz Memorial Library, that contains a myriad of educational materials on the Crown of the Continent ecosystem.

Types of Experiences and Trips Provided

  • Professionally instructed educational hikes and adventures for children and adults
  • Day and overnight camps for youth
  • Courses on ecology, geology, cultural history and more
  • Crown of the Continent Ecosystems
  • Educational hikes
  • Youth educational camps and programs

Field Camp is home-base for many of our adult field courses, family and custom programs. The facility is open from April to October.

The Glacier Park Field Camp and/or Big Creek Outdoor Education Center can be rented for custom programs, small conferences, trainings and retreats. For more information, please contact [email protected] or our Main Office at (406) 755-1211.

Tent and RV camping and pets are allowed at established campgrounds adjacent to both campuses.