Explore Yellowstone - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

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hiking
5 days ago

Did this hike a little too close to dusk. Passed plenty of people who said they had not seen much in the way of wildlife, but our experience was much different. We saw a herd of elk running through a nearby meadow and a badger scuttling across the trail right in front of us. We did not make it to the ponds, however, because we came across a brown bear about 2.5 miles in. It was on the trail 25 yards ahead of us before we ever saw it, and we did not have bear spray. We immediately hiked up the ridge to distance ourselves, and luckily the ol' bear continued on its way without giving us a second thought. We turned around and went back out the way we came. Fantastic scenery and wildlife, but be smarter than I was!
(1) Do not start a hike at dusk. (2) Carry bear spray. (3) Hike in a group of three or more. (4) Follow any other guidelines provided by park personnel.

Classic...not a necessarily a hike but it’s super amazing still.

The lake behind the geysers made it that much more interesting...one of my favorite geyser basins.

Best to go in late August. Going in the middle of summer you will share this trail with hundreds of other people. To crowded in the heart of summer.

Real cool spot to check out some hot springs

Interesting trail. Got to see old faithful blow twice! So many interesting hot springs and geysers here.

Very cool to walk around here.

Fun spot to relax and enjoy the beauty of nature!

hiking
2 months ago

Wouldn't really call this a hike. More of a simple walk. Still fun though.

hiking
2 months ago

Easy hike just a couple of switch backs. Definitely check it out.

Great hike just always crowded.

This is an easy boardwalk that offers lovely views. However, to really enjoy the Grand Prismatic Spring I’d suggest taking the overlook trail.

Did this trail 2 weeks ago. Didnt see any wildlife. The ponds were beautiful. Only saw 2 groups of people at the beginning and end of the trail.

Trail closed :(

3 months ago

Trail Closed. 9/30

A nice short walk.

road closed middle end of September

We saw no wildlife, other than a grouse, but it was nice with lots of ups and downs, after the initial relatively steep climb. Mostly shaded forest, other than the last mile out on the open hillside, with the view of Gardiner, WY. The reflection of the trees and hills in the largest pond was beautiful.

best time was at 7:30am. no crowds

hiking
3 months ago

This is an easily accessible hike if you are staying in Mammoth Hot Springs. It is nearly a Loop, clockwise starting at the Hot Springs, ending behind the hotel, or vice versa. We went in a clockwise direction, skirting the lounging elk. There is a mix of terrain; mostly forested trail. The trail is well marked with orange metal tabs on trees. Some of the tabs will be marked with mileage markers. When going clockwise, there are 2 sign posts pointing you in the correct direction near the beginning of the hike. You will see numerous ponds, and a chance of wildlife includes, but is not limited to, deer, elk, badger, snakes. There is a plateau with a view of nearby Gardiner. The trail is easy enough for a family, as multiple ages were hiking the day we did this trail.

Be careful on the road section. Some drivers aren’t considerate of walkers

hiking
4 months ago

August closed

Sadly, although this hike was on my list of trails for this trip, I was unable to enjoy it due to a large herd of elk relaxing at the trailheads. Yes at each end. The ranger did say that I could try to edge my way through but to have my bear spray at the ready in case they charged. Seemed like a better idea to just enjoy the boardwalks, anf let sleeping elk lie.

The geysers and pools are pure magic. Castle Geyser was definitely a favorite.

I personally enjoyed the beautiful pools of West Thumb even more than the Grand Prismatic area. It features beautiful views of Yellowstone Lake, and the pool depths and colors are other-worldly. The trail offers a brochure that talks about each feature that can either be returned or they ask for a dollar donation.

Trail itself is really enjoyable but it’s badly marked out so initially we turned left towards the river instead of right as there were no markers. This resulted in us hiking over a ridge which was really strenuous. It add an unnecessary but challenging 45 minutes to the hike.

I would recommend starting this at the back of mammoth hotel and not close to mammoth hot springs as you would then start in the sun and end in the shade and it’s better marked out.

it is just beautiful. easy walk. sept. very cold in morning

nature trips
4 months ago

Crowded but opens at 5 am bet it would be perfect then.

walking
4 months ago

Crowded, touristy and lots of bathers in the water at the end. Eh.

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