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Home listed for $1.5M in Glacier under contract in 3 days

by CHRIS PETERSON
Hungry Horse News | December 3, 2021 12:00 AM

A manufactured home recently listed for $1.5 million in Apgar Village in Glacier National Park was under contract in a matter of days, another illustration of just how hot the real estate market is.

The modest two-bedroom, one-bath home near Eddie’s Cafe is one of the few private properties left in the park’s 1 million acres.

Jessica Tucker of Sotheby’s International Real Estate in Whitefish said she listed the property on a Friday and it was under contract by a Monday. The actual sale price was not disclosed, as the sale has not been finalized.

The home has been used as a vacation rental by the previous owner, Tucker said.

“We’ve seen a lot of demand for that type of property,” Tucker said Monday.

The home is known as “fee simple,” meaning it's not a lease holding and is completely privately held. There are no covenants, either.

The home sits on a small lot of about 2,500 square feet.

It doesn’t exactly have solitude, either. In the summertime, Apgar sees a lot of visitors, as they visit the nearby privately owned shops and access Lake McDonald.

To the north of the home, there is a host of rental cabins owned by Pursuit and to the south is a parking area used by visitors and employees of Eddie’s.

The house has no views of the mountains. But still, owning private land in Glacier has its allure. “It wasn’t shocking to me,” that it sold that quickly, Tucker said.

Private land in Glacier pre-dates the park’s creation in 1910. Prior to that, there were hundreds of acres of private lands on both the east and west sides of Glacier.

Today, there are 113 privately held homes and parcels, commonly called inholdings, noted Glacier spokeswoman Gina Kerzman.

Another private home on the Grist Road, a heavily wooded road about a half mile to the west of Apgar, is also under contract by Sothebys.

That home, also used as a vacation rental, was listed for $11 million. The Glacier Bear Retreat is a pair of recently built houses on nearly an acre of land just west of Lake McDonald. It was used for ultra-high-end vacation rentals, with rates starting at $11,000 per week during the peak summer months.

That property is owned by Gail Lynne Goodwin, a Whitefish developer.

The original house, owned by Dwight Grist, was in disrepair. Goodwin tore down the old house and built a new one, along with a guest cabin.

Sales of private land are few and far between in Glacier.

PERHAPS ONE of the most publicized in the past 20 years prior to the recent sales was when former North Fork landowner Gerald Penovich wanted to rebuild a cabin that burned down in the 1988 Red Bench fire in Big Prairie.

Penovich went back and forth with the Park Service at the time. The Park Service claimed the property was in the flood plain, so it couldn’t have a septic system. But eventually a septic permit was obtained from Flathead County.

Penovich never did rebuild and sold the property to another owner who, in turn, built a large cabin and barn on the spread, which is inside the park about 3 miles north of the Polebridge entrance. Over the years, many private inholdings have been donated back to the park or sold at a significant discount.

One of the most notable in recent times was when the Lundgren family sold 120 acres that was the old Doody Ranch along the Middle Fork of the Flathead to the Trust for Public Lands for $900,000 in 2012.

The Trust, in turn, sold it to the Park Service for the same price, keeping the land in public hands. The site has historic significance, as it was the homestead of Dan and Josephine Doody. Josephine was a bootlegger who sold moonshine to travelers and railroad crews as the tracks passed a short distance from her place.

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