Purple Mountain Trail

MODERATE 31 reviews
#53 of 208 trails in

Purple Mountain Trail is a 6.5 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from May until September.

6.5 miles
2,129 feet
Out & Back





nature trips




wild flowers


no dogs

Directions from Madison Junction: Travel a 1/4 mile north on the Madison-Norris road, limited parking.

1 month ago

partially shaded trail through tall pines as you make your way up the mountain. not much visibility til you get towards the top, but the peak is pretty. the long switchback made the grade more manageable. not sure I would put this on my list again. There's several other hikes in yellowstone with more to see.

3 months ago

Not very scenic, but a good hike

3 months ago

Went up 5/24 - steady incline that leads to beautiful views at the end. Dense trees and like others said, not much in the terms of wildlife!

4 months ago

Waste of precious time. Way too many other awesome hikes and places to see than this. Hiking uphill in a forest with minimal
Views and zero wildlife. Have no idea why this hike is suggested other than it’s close to the campground.

4 months ago

slight elevation all the way to the top. went out on 5/18 and there was a ranger doing trail maintenance. you can make it all the way to the top. last 200m has snow but there are several tracks. keep hiking past all the snow and there are dry spots with beautiful views to have your snack/lunch.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Really fun!!! Constant grade the whole way up. Lots of forest but the peak gives amazing views. Don't forget your bells, bear spray, and bug spray.

Friday, June 23, 2017

Loved it! Good, challenging hike! Beautiful view at the top!

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Beautiful views at the top. The hike is straight through the forest. It started drizzling on us and then thunder came that sounded like a bear growling... My wife was having a heart attack for most of the home at the thought of bears :) it was fun after we had finished it

Monday, June 19, 2017

This was a great hike to get away from the swarms of parking lot people. On a Saturday we saw two other people on the trail. It is steep and the switchbacks have some gravel/scree texture, so if you've got kids or people unsure of footing, it might not be your hike. Views are spectacular, and a worthy payoff for the punishment. Wouldn't worry too much about wildlife, as we didn't come across any water sources and the trees are relatively dense. Decent cover through the whole hike, though bug spray is a must.

Pros - No crowds, fantastic view
Cons - Steep and long, forest getting to the top isn't much to look at

Note - Hiked 1st week of June, 2017, was entirely clear of snow while Washburn and other higher hikes were completely impassable

Thursday, June 01, 2017

hell of a first hike at yellowstone. There was still fresh snow on the ground in the shady areas and the snow became very deep at the top. could have used snow shoes. Lost the trail at the top and had to abandon before finding a good outlook/stopping point. But the views along the way up were so breathtaking.

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Great 3h hike close to the West entrance right past the Madison junction. You can park in the pullout across the trailhead. Don't let the 2000ft of elevation scare you, it's really steady, no steep sections. Great views of the park after mile 1.2. Little to no wildlife on the trail but you might see bison in the prairie across the road.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Nice hike and beautiful view at the top. We ran into a little snow and the hiking poles were good to have.

Monday, December 19, 2016

A realitively easy hike I did in mid-Sept with a few steeper sections. An out & back switchback trail that is easy to follow. Actual hiking time out and back took me 3 hrs. Views at top are fantastic looking toward Old Faithful in the distance and the Teton's further. Windy at top so feels much colder, especially if you stop for picnic lunch like I did.

Monday, September 14, 2015

Great hike! Trail is a little narrow and loose at times, but nice vertical last 1/3 and the view is totally worth it!

Monday, September 14, 2015

Great tougher beginner hike. 3.7 (I think) so about a 8 mile round trip. Last third has some more vertical terrain. The lookout view is totally worth it!

Sunday, September 06, 2015

It's a steady zig zag walk to the top. We did as our last hike in the park. Took less than 2.5hrs up and downs. There were no bears on the day and it was really windy on the top. View is okay on the top but before there's not much too see.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Great trail. Great overlook.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Great afternoon hike with a steady incline that is not too killer to the top. The great views at the top are worth it.

Friday, January 25, 2013

This was a great warm up trail to help some friends and I get acclimated to the high elevation and thin air of Wyoming. The 1,560 ft. elevation climb in just 3 miles was challenging and rewarding. The summit offers a great viewpoint of the junction of the Madison, Gibbon and Firehole Rivers.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

3 miles to the top with about 1700 foot elevation gain. Great view of the Gibbon River Valley to the South from the top and the Geyser fields further south. Excellent choice for campers staying at Madison Junction looking for excercise without driving far. Trailhead 1/4 mile east on north side of highway from Madison Junction of the Grand Loop Highway.

1 month ago

2 months ago

2 months ago

3 months ago

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Friday, September 01, 2017

Saturday, July 29, 2017

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Saturday, August 27, 2016

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