The St. Mary Campground, located on the east side of the park, is closed temporarily. The campground has seen a recent increase in black and grizzly bear activity, creating a high potential for negative human/bear interactions. It is unknown at this time when the campground will reopen.
Earlier this week, the campground was only open to hard-sided camping. Since that announcement, there has been increased black and grizzly bear activity in and around the campground. Efforts to haze the bears from the area have been unsuccessful. For public and bear safety issues, the campground will be temporarily closed until bear activity decreases.
At this time of year, bears are entering a phase called hyperphagia. It is a period of concentrated feeding to prepare for hibernation. This year there has been an exceptionally abundant crop of a variety of berries located in the campground, attracting bears to the area.
Glacier National Park is home to black and grizzly bears. All park visitors are reminded to recreate safely in bear country, and report all bear sightings to a park ranger.
Park regulations require that all edibles, food containers, and cookware be stored in a hard-sided vehicle or food locker when not in use, day or night. Place all trash in bear-proof containers. Do not burn waste in fire rings or leave litter around your camp. Fire rings should be free of trash before vacating a campsite.
To avoid a surprise encounter with a bear, hikers are encouraged to make noise, hike in groups, hike during day-light hours, and carry bear spray. When carrying bear spray it is important to have the spray readily accessible and have knowledge of how to use it properly.
For more information about camping or hiking in bear country while recreating in Glacier National Park, visit http://www.nps.gov/glac/naturescience/bears.htm. For updated information about campgrounds and campground status, please visit http://home.nps.gov/applications/glac/cgstatus/cgstatus.cfm or contact the park at 406-888-7800.