Kalispell Live Cam

It’s a gateway to vast Glacier National Park


Kalispell is a city located in Flathead County, Montana, United States. The area where Kalispell now stands has a rich history that includes the presence of indigenous peoples and the later influx of European settlers. Here's a brief overview of Kalispell's history:

Native American Presence: The Flathead Valley, where Kalispell is situated, was originally inhabited by Native American tribes, including the Salish and Kootenai. These tribes have a long history in the region, relying on the abundant natural resources for their livelihood.

European Exploration and Fur Trade: In the early 19th century, European explorers and fur trappers, including the famous Lewis and Clark Expedition, began to explore the western territories. The fur trade brought increased contact between Native Americans and Europeans.

Establishment of Kalispell: The city of Kalispell was founded in 1891 as a result of the expansion of the Great Northern Railway into the region. The railroad played a crucial role in the development of the town and the surrounding area. The city was named after the Salish word "Qlispé," which means "flat land above the lake."

Economic Development: Kalispell became a center for trade and commerce in the Flathead Valley. Agriculture, timber, and tourism played important roles in the local economy. The city also served as a transportation hub for the surrounding region.

Notable Structures: Over the years, Kalispell has developed several notable structures, including historic buildings and landmarks. The Conrad Mansion, built in the early 20th century, is a well-preserved mansion that provides a glimpse into the city's history. The Flathead County Courthouse, constructed in 1905, is another significant historic building in Kalispell.

Modern Growth: In recent decades, Kalispell has experienced population growth and development. The city has become a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts, offering access to Glacier National Park, Flathead Lake, and other recreational areas.

Today, Kalispell is a thriving community with a mix of historical charm and modern amenities. It continues to attract residents and visitors with its scenic surroundings, outdoor activities, and a sense of the Old West charm that is deeply rooted in its history.

Top Tourist Attractions

The City offers a range of attractions for tourists. Here are some of the top tourist attractions in and around Kalispell:

  • Glacier National Park: One of the most iconic national parks in the United States, Glacier National Park is renowned for its stunning landscapes, glaciers, and diverse wildlife. Visitors can explore the Going-to-the-Sun Road, hike numerous trails, and experience the beauty of pristine lakes and mountains.
  • Flathead Lake: The largest natural freshwater lake west of the Mississippi, Flathead Lake is a popular destination for water activities, including boating, fishing, and swimming. The lake is surrounded by picturesque landscapes and charming communities.
  • Conrad Mansion Museum: Built in 1895 by Charles E. Conrad, a Kalispell founder and businessman, the Conrad Mansion is a beautifully preserved historic home. Visitors can take guided tours to explore the mansion's architecture, period furnishings, and gardens.
  • Hockaday Museum of Art: This museum showcases the artistic heritage of Montana and the surrounding region. It features a diverse collection of Western art, contemporary pieces, and rotating exhibits. The museum is housed in a historic Carnegie Library building.
  • Lone Pine State Park: Just outside of Kalispell, Lone Pine State Park offers hiking trails and panoramic views of the Flathead Valley. It's a great place for outdoor activities, picnics, and birdwatching.
  • Buffalo Hill Golf Club: Golf enthusiasts can enjoy a round of golf at Buffalo Hill Golf Club, an 18-hole championship course with beautiful views of the surrounding mountains.
  • Wild Horse Island State Park: Accessible by boat on Flathead Lake, Wild Horse Island is known for its wildlife, including bighorn sheep, deer, and wild horses. Visitors can hike, birdwatch, and enjoy the natural beauty of the island.
  • Whitefish Mountain Resort: Located nearby in Whitefish, this resort offers year-round activities. In the winter, it's a popular ski destination, while the summer months attract hikers, mountain bikers, and zip-liners.
  • Bigfork: A charming village on the northeast shore of Flathead Lake, Bigfork is known for its art galleries, shops, and a summer playhouse. It's a great place to explore and experience the local culture.
  • Flathead National Forest: Outdoor enthusiasts can explore the Flathead National Forest, which surrounds Kalispell. The forest offers hiking, camping, fishing, and wildlife viewing in a pristine mountainous environment.

These attractions showcase the natural beauty, history, and recreational opportunities that make Kalispell and its surrounding area a popular destination for tourists.


The City experiences a continental climate characterized by four distinct seasons. Here's an overview of the climate in Kalispell:

  • Winter (December to February): Winters in Kalispell are cold and snowy. Average temperatures during this season range from highs in the 20s to 30s Fahrenheit (-6 to 4 degrees Celsius) and lows in the single digits to teens Fahrenheit (-13 to -7 degrees Celsius). Snowfall is common, and the surrounding mountains offer opportunities for winter sports such as skiing and snowboarding.
  • Spring (March to May): Spring is a transitional season with gradually warming temperatures. Daytime highs typically range from the 40s to 60s Fahrenheit (4 to 20 degrees Celsius), while nighttime lows can still be chilly. As the snow melts, the landscape becomes greener, and spring is a popular time for outdoor activities and hiking.
  • Summer (June to August): Summers in Kalispell are generally mild and pleasant. Daytime temperatures often reach the 70s and 80s Fahrenheit (21 to 32 degrees Celsius), occasionally reaching into the 90s Fahrenheit (32 to 37 degrees Celsius). Summer is the peak tourist season, with visitors enjoying outdoor activities, festivals, and exploring nearby attractions like Glacier National Park and Flathead Lake.
  • Fall (September to November): Fall is characterized by cool temperatures and vibrant foliage. Daytime highs range from the 50s to 60s Fahrenheit (10 to 26 degrees Celsius), while nighttime lows can drop into the 20s and 30s Fahrenheit (-6 to 4 degrees Celsius). Fall is a beautiful time to visit, with the changing colors of the leaves and quieter tourism compared to the summer months.

The city's climate is influenced by its inland location and proximity to the Rocky Mountains. The region experiences a mix of mountain and continental climate influences, resulting in distinct seasonal changes. It's important for visitors to be prepared for varying weather conditions, especially if planning outdoor activities, as temperatures can fluctuate, and snow is possible even in the shoulder seasons.

  • Flathead Valley: Kalispell is located in the Flathead Valley, a broad and fertile basin surrounded by mountain ranges. This valley is known for its scenic beauty and is home to several lakes, including the largest natural freshwater lake in the western United States, Flathead Lake.
  • Flathead Lake: To the south of Kalispell lies Flathead Lake, a large glacial lake covering about 197 square miles (510 square kilometers). The lake is known for its crystal-clear waters, recreational activities such as boating and fishing, and the Wild Horse Island State Park.
  • Whitefish Range: To the north of Kalispell, the Whitefish Range extends into Canada. This mountain range is part of the larger Rocky Mountains and contributes to the area's stunning landscapes. Whitefish Mountain Resort, a popular ski destination in winter, is located in this range.
  • Salish Mountains: To the east of Kalispell, the Salish Mountains rise, providing a picturesque backdrop to the city. These mountains are part of the larger Mission Range.
  • Glacier National Park: Located to the northeast of Kalispell, Glacier National Park is a major geographical feature. The park is known for its rugged mountains, glaciers, and diverse ecosystems. It shares an international border with Canada's Waterton Lakes National Park, forming the Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park.
  • Columbia Falls: This neighboring town to the southeast of Kalispell is situated at the confluence of the Flathead River and the Middle Fork of the Flathead River. It's an entry point to Glacier National Park and provides access to outdoor activities.
  • Swan Range: To the southeast of Kalispell lies the Swan Range, another subrange of the Rocky Mountains. This range adds to the scenic beauty of the region and offers opportunities for hiking and outdoor recreation.

The geography of Kalispell is characterized by a mix of valleys, mountains, and lakes, making it an attractive destination for outdoor enthusiasts. The city's location near Glacier National Park and Flathead Lake adds to its appeal, drawing visitors with a love for nature and outdoor activities.