During a lovely weekend stay at the Izaac Walton Inn at Essex, my wife and I ventured up to Marias Pass for a backcountry ski tour along the southern boundary of Glacier National Park.
We parked right at the pass and ventured up the Autumn Creek trail past Three Bears Lake. Heading north toward Firebrand Pass at the first trail junction, we followed the tracks of a couple of telemarkers who turned up a wide draw dotted with aspens toward the treeless slopes below Little Dog Mountain.
With bright sunshine and almost no wind, we could have stayed all day, noodling around the open, low-angled terrain. There's something for everybody, from beginners to advanced. For easy access and spectacular mountain views, Marias Pass has to be one of the best backcountry skiing destinations you'll ever find.