Explore the most popular backpacking trails near Yellowstone National Park with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

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.

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.

Great hike.. awesome views .. suspension bridge.. remember the bear spray!!!

Hiked in July 2016. Incredible, inspiring views from multiple lookouts along the trail. A bit strenuous in hot weather due to elevation gain, but exhilarating and not to be missed.

Excellent trail we only walked in 5 miles. The roaring creek and suspension bridge is amazing.

Great sight and if right on time gets you to peak in a fair amount of time

Great views of the Yellowstone Canyon on this. While there is the trail that can be walked in its entirety, there are also parking spots at various places so you can make this work however you please in terms of whether you want to hike it or just stop at the designated viewpoints. I went as the sun was setting and it was incredibly beautiful.

on Union Falls Trail

camping
2 months ago

Well worth the hike will do again

backpacking
4 months ago

Did a few trips on this trail, super easy and brings you back to beautiful Grebe lake. Definitely worth a look.

I didn’t hike the trail —we only went to the touristy section where you can see Inspiration point and the canyon. It was amazing. So beautiful. Probably one of the prettiest places in Yellowstone.

Grateful our Hiking group took the time to see this even though was w little crowded. Go early for fewer crowds.

I spent three days in this area with my two sons, 9 and 15. The scenery is incredible! They loved every minute of it, and so did I. There were many signs of bears this area but we never saw one.

This trail offers great views of wildlife and the Northern part of the Yellowstone River's 20 mile long Grand Canyon. Along the way we saw plenty of bison, marmots and a small herd of bighorn sheep. The parking area (Yellowstone River Picnic Area) is the perfect place to have a picnic after a good hike.

Really tough start. Totally worth the varied climates and terrains.

Easy hike. Great, wide trail. Nice views. Budget time for at the top; you will want to put the lookout center at the top to good use.

Beautiful trail with amazing views. Hiked parts of it in July 2017. You can get right next to the head of Yellowstone falls and/or take some great photos at a distance as well. Not for small children.

backpacking
7 months ago

great trail.... away from all of the people in YNP... bring deet if hiking in summer.. tons of mosquitoes and flies.. a little difficult when hitchhiking to the trailhead... I hitched from old faithful to the start of the dirt road... then off and on until I got to the trailhead... I think I spent more time hitchhiking to the trailhead than on the trail! haha .. fun trail.. wide river ford at the beginning..

on Mallard Lake Trail

7 months ago

Beautiful hike with a beautiful lunch spot at the end. A moderate trail with a steady climb essentially all the way up, which just made for a great decent back down. We saw lots of signs of wildlife, but didn’t see any while we were there. We had the entire trail to ourselves and that was perfect.

Awesome hike with amazing views. My favorite hike of Yellowstone. Wildlife is abundant as well!

This was our favorite hike in Yellowstone. Uphill on the way up and downhill on the way back. Not hard though, it’s moderate. It is only a bit of of a challenge if you’re not experienced with high altitude hiking (I have lived in Florida my whole life) but you can take small breaks to catch your breath and take some pictures! The views start out great and get even better as you start hiking up. It was so windy at the top that our hats almost flew off but the view from the top was amazing. Going up into the viewing room and signing the log book with our names was such a cool experience. I would do this hike all the time if I could! Highly recommended.

hiking
7 months ago

I have always come in from Fish Lake. This trail features three river crossings, which for me adds to the fun, and skips the elevation gain of the Grassy Lake trail. About the same total distance. Hardly ever meet anyone on this trail.

hiking
8 months ago

Only hiked 3.5 miles in and then back. Such beautiful country. Saw bear tracks and scat, but no bears this time. Many beautiful birds and lots of bison. Encountered very few other hikers.

Four stars because of the awesome scenery! Trail was closed in 2 places, so was unable to hike the entire thing. Pretty easy hike with lots of people.

hiking
8 months ago

The road to the trailhead was closed when we went two weeks ago. Expect to add at least a mile or two to the total distance depending on where you park if it's still closed.
The hike itself was great. Great natural scenery along the rim for the first couple miles and neat little thermal steam vents, geysers and stuff as you get closer to the bottom. Also beware of biting flies in the grassier portions at the bottom, but they're not too bad closer to the river. Challening hike coming back up for sure, but very rewarding.

Enjoyed this hike. I wouldn't call it hard. Trail is very wide and you pretty much have a gradual ascent to the top with a few areas where it levels off. The view would have been much better had there not been so much smoke in the air from all the fires in Montana and Idaho, but it was still pretty cool. We saw a black bear on the hike which was really cool.

hiking
8 months ago

Great hike, came back in the dark, couple creek crossings, one big one . The water at Ouzel Pool was amazing. Heading back before the season ends. Falls was beautiful, the pool was the best.

The scenery is worth every step. We started at Cascade trail instead of Grassy Lake and did the Terrace Falls trail then came back to the trail sign and headed up Union Falls. Terrace Falls followed the river so the scenery was completely different than Union Falls. This made it a total of about 19.5 miles. Bring a swim suit and plan on swimming in the warm spring just a .3 mile detour to the left before Union Falls. At Unions Falls there is a trail that will take you down to the falls so you can get right next to it. Worth every step. 1 major river crossing. Heading back the cold water felt AMAZING on sore muscles. Even though this is not a steep trail plan on it taking you twice as long to get back because it is so long.

Long and steep but worth the effort. Varied terrain and beautiful views

hiking
8 months ago

Easy trail Bison and antelope spotted. Lightly used and beautiful lake

many portions of the trail are closed for repairs boooo

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