Montana Highway 2 traces the southern boundary of Glacier National Park, and is the only route to the east side of the park when the Going-to-the-Sun Road is closed. We drove Hwy 2 in May and September in 2015 and greatly enjoyed the experience both times.
Before our September visit, I read about the Lewis Thrust Fault at Marias Pass and stopped to have a look at the park’s most famous geologic feature. The fame derives from the tremendous natural forces that pushed 1.6 billion year old rock over the top of 70 million-year-old rock, as David Rockwell notes in his nature guide. The fault is visible as the thin horizontal, light-colored band at the middle of the mountains in the image above.
Beyond Marias Pass, on the east side of the continental divide, the landscape changes from the forests of the west side to the plains, a remarkable transition.
In May, as we neared the town of Browning, on the Blackfeet Indian Reservation, a rainbow formed against the dark clouds, which prompted me to pull over for a photo.
As I turned around 180 degrees I saw an inspiring late afternoon view of the mountains in the park.
Our hotel in Browning was very near the Museum of the Plains Indians, which is well-worth visiting. On both trips, we had a west-facing room, with wonderful morning and evening views of the Rocky Mountains of Glacier National Park.