The Disabled Traveler's Companion

Lake McDonald Lodge

The history of Lake McDonald is unique among the hotels and motor inn properties in Glacier National Park because its origin predated the establishment of the Park.  The lodge site was established in 1895 when George Snyder homestead the land and built the small Snyder Hotel.

Ownership later passed` to John Lewis of Columbia Falls, Montana, who maintained a fishing and tourist camp on the site for many years.  Mr. Lewis built the log cabins in approximately 1910 and added the present lodge structure in 1913, operating both as “Lewis’ Glacier Hotel”.  The building cost Mr. Lewis $48,000 to build with a good share of this sum being spent on transporting the logs and materials by lake to the lodge site.

Mr. Lewis was a furrier and furnished all of the hunting trophies which are still on display in the Lodge lobby.  These mounted wild animals were originally part of his private collection and served to enhance the “hunting lodge” atmosphere which Mr. Lewis sought to maintain.

The massive fireplace in the lobby adds to the comfortable “homey” atmosphere for which the Lodge has been famous throughout the years. The fireplace and hearth originally served as a combination kitchen and furnace, but this has never been authenticated.

At a later date, more cabins, two motel buildings, a coffee shop, and the Camp Store were added to the complex.  These additional accommodations bring the total number of rooms to 100.  During the winter of 1958, a completely modern kitchen was installed and the hotel was entirely refurbished

The Lodge was purchased by the Glacier Park Hotel Company in 1930, at which time the main hotel structure and several surrounding cabins were operated by the Great Northern Railway using the name “Lake McDonald Hotel”.  The land also was transferred from private ownership to Glacier National Par at this time.  In 1957, the name was officially changed to “Lake McDonald Lodge”.



P. O. Box 2990
Columbia Falls, MT 59912
855-733-4522 (Toll Free)
303-265-7010 (Outside the USA)
Web Site
You can reserve an accessible room on line with Xanterra but for any concerns or questions call Xanterra directly.

ACCESSIBLE ROOMS: cms by Netsource One, Inc.