Mountain Goats

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About Mountain Goats

If you look at a Mountain Goat carefully, you will see it is a strange looking creature. To me, it looks a bit like a large dog, with horns. But it is one of the rarest of the large mammals in the lower 48 states.


Where to See Mountain Goats

The best place to see Mountain Goats is at Glacier National Park in Montana. The Mountain Goat is even the official symbol of Glacier National Park. They make their home in the mountains and steep cliffs of Glacier Park, but the easiest and best place to look for them is near the Visitor's Center at Logan Pass. The goats will be waiting, guaranteed.


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Mountain Goat at Glacier National Park.


Mountain Goat Range

Glacier National Park, Montana

The best place to see Mountain Goats is at Glacier National Park in Montana. Take the Going-to-the-Sun road to Logan Pass. On the Hidden Lake Trail at Logan Pass, you should look for mountain goats. The mountain goats almost always gather near the Logan Pass Visitor's Center. Or you can try hiking the steep Highline Trail to the Granite Park Chalet (dangerous, but not steep), from the trailhead near the Visitor's Center, where you are likely to see both mountain goats and bighorn sheep. The west entrance to Glacier is approximately 35 miles north of Kalispell, Montana on Highway 2.


Want to see some mountain goats? Mountain goats so close you won't need a spotting scope or a 600-millimeter lens? Head to Logan Pass at Glacier National Park. The goats will be waiting, guaranteed. Just head up the trail to Hidden Lake, and you'll find the goats waiting. You don't have to hike all the way to the lake, just 10 or 15 minutes up the trail, if that, and you'll find them contentedly munching on wildflower buffet. The goats are so close and nonchalant they could be models strutting a runway. --Kurt Repanshek


Plan you visit to Glacier National Park between late May and October, as the Going to the Sun Road is likely to be closed by snow from early autumn until mid June.


During the winter it is rare to see a mountain goat, unless you're doing some mountaineering yourself, but from late spring to early fall it is difficult to be in Glacier National Park and not spot a mountain goat. Mountain goats don't really try and hide from hikers. Most other animals aren't as bold and it frequently takes a trained eye to discern an animal or bird standing still within a few feet of the trail. Hidden Lake Overlook Trail where these mountain goats were photographed is the best spot to observe or photograph them in , Glacier National Park. I prefer to photograph mountain goats frolicking on Hidden Lake Overlook Trail, than to see them licking up anti-freeze from the Logan Pass parking lot. My wildlife photography is done with a large telescopic lens using a Canon digital single lens reflex camera; it’s not a good idea to get to close to the wildlife. ~ Shawn Coggins Glacier Hikers


Mount Evans, Colorado

Mount Evans is the road into the sky. Drive from 8,700 feet at Idaho Spring where you turn off Interstate 70. The Mount Evans Scenic Byway climbs more than 7,000 feet in just 28 miles, reaching an altitude of 14,264 feet. The upper section of this road is the highest paved highway in North America. At the summit you'll enjoy the big picture—the entire Front Range and Continental Divide sprawls at your feet. This highest of Rocky Mountain highs brings you to the rarefied world above timberline. Here there is an amalgam of hardy wildflowers, lichens and grasses, and small furry mammals like pikas and marmots. Mountain Goats and Bighorn Sheep will greet you as you climb to the top of the world. Mount Evans is the best place in Colorado to see Mountain Goats. It is open only late May (typically Memorial Day) through early September (typically Labor Day).


Go to Mount Evans in the early morning to catch the amazing sunrise and see more wildlife (best time to see the wild mountain goats and bighorn sheep). Keep an eye on the weather and bring warm clothing since winter conditions can exist on the mountain even in the middle of summer. -- Yonah C.


Mount Evans is a fantastic place to take out-of-town guests who do not like to hike. You'll be nearly guaranteed to see a mountain goat or two, and it FEELS like you're in the mountains without having to do the strenuous leg work. It's a very easy drive from Denver, and a great excuse to pack a picnic. ~ Leah O.


Western US - Good Locations for Viewing

Anybody know any other good places to see Mountain Goats?


Photos

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Links

Glacier National Park

Glacier Mountain Goats

Glacier Wildlife Photos