It is pretty easy to climb from the pass and the views of the neighborhood are outstanding.
Flinsch Peak (9,225 ft. / 2,812 m.) was named for a young Austrian, named Rudolf Ernst Ferdinand Flinsch, who came to the area in 1892 with Dr. Walter B. James (the namesake for Mount James) and was guided in the area by William Jackson (of Mount Jackson) to hunt mountain goats.
Flinsch was quite surprised when he looked at a new map of the area and found his name on a peak. It used to be called Flinsch’s Peak.
James Willard Schultz proposed the name No Chief Mountain for this peak.
No Chief was said to be a great Piegan warrior who led many raid against the Crows. In one particular raid his younger brother Little Antelope came along and No Chief went against the vision that was given to him. In the vision No Chief saw bodies of Piegan warriors lying in the underbrush, but he did not see their faces because he awoke before he could see them.
He shared his vision with his party and most of them including Little Antelope did not want to turn back. In fact, Little Antelope stated that if his brother loved him No Chief would lead them up the valley.
No Chief could not turn his brother’s request away and he lead the party on foot toward the enemies’ camp. Eventually, the party was discovered by a great number of Crow warriors on horseback.
A battle ensued and Little Antelope and other Piegans were killed. No Chief fought bravely and led his force against the Crows to ensure that they did not scalp and dishonor on the Piegan dead. The dead were recovered and buried properly.
Months later No Chief went back to seek revenge. He stole a number of prized horses and belongings as well as counted coup on his enemy. He returned with his spoils and a bag that he refused to let anyone else handle.
He entered his lodge with the bag and told his three wives, who were sisters, that the bag contained the bones of his fallen brother Little Antelope. His wives then feared for their safety and only his oldest wife remained in the lodge.
Eventually the other wives came back as well after they decided that Little Antelope was kind in life so they had nothing to fear from his bones.
No Chief began to speak to his brother’s bones as if Little Antelope were alive. Some believed that the bones carried on a conversation with No Chief as well.
When No Chief died he was buried with his brother’s bones.
Okay, that might be a little creepy but visiting Flinsch Peak does not have to be.
Here are some recommendations:
- Start early. Be at the North Shore Trailhead in the Two Medicine Valley early in the morning.
- Prepare for dry. There is little water above No Name Lake so plan accordingly. Filter or carry its your choice.
- Take your camera. There are spectacular views above treeline.
- See the Route … Follow the Route. Use the red-lines in Volume 2 to safely guide you to the summit of Flinsch Peak.
- Consider Sinopah. Use the Sinopah tour boat to save about 3 miles of trail travel on the way back. The last boat leaves at 5:30 pm from the dock.
- Make it a bigger day. If you have the time and energy getting Rising Wolf Mountain is not out of the question. You could also consider Mount Helen from Dawson Pass.
What piece of Glacier National Park real estate do you want to learn more about?
Send me a message and I will get to work.
Thanks for joining in for this small bit of fun history about Glacier National Park. Not all of it is true but it is interesting.
McClintock, Walter, The Old North Trail or Life, Legends and Religion of the Blackfeet Indians, University of Nebraska Press, 1992 (reprint of 1910 edition)
Schultz, W. R., Signposts of Adventure, Glacier National Park As the Indians Know It, Houghton Mifflin Company, 1926
Holterman, J. Place Names of Glacier National Park, Jack Holterman, Helena, MT, Riverbend Publishing, 2006
© Montana Outdoor Guidebooks, 2014