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Best Places to Run and Hike in Yellowstone National Park

Updated: Nov 23, 2022

If you're looking for the best trails in Yellowstone National Park, you've come to the right place. Whether you're looking for a challenging run or an easy hike, Yellowstone offers a variety of options. Here, we'll look at the Grand View Trail, the Uncle Tom's Trail, and the Beaver Ponds Trail.

Grand View

Grand View is one of the most famous viewpoints in the Park and provides panoramic views. The hike to the viewpoint takes you close to the canyon rim, where you can observe the twists and turns of the Yellowstone River below.

You can also take in the contrasting colors of the canyon. Although this area is relatively complex in some parts, the views are stunning.

To reach the falls, you must hike about 0.7 miles round trip. The trail is unpaved and has a steep descent of 600 feet (180 m). There are few rest areas along the way, so you should take a break between sections. However, the view of the falls is well worth the effort.

If you're looking for a moderate trail, try the Artist Point Trail. This trail runs from Artist Point to Point Suble Lookout. This hike requires about three hours to complete and is ideal for hikers. Despite its elevation, it is not as strenuous as the Lamar River Trail. You can take binoculars or a spotting scope and enjoy the beautiful scenery.

Moreover, this area is off-the-beaten-path and offers a quieter environment than other parts of Yellowstone National Park.

Whether you're looking for a challenging run or a relaxing hike, Grand View is a great place to get out and active. The trail is only about 4.8 miles long but has a modest elevation gain and can take about two to three hours to complete. The trail follows the Firehole River through a forest and makes for a perfect hike or run.

You can also visit the Great Fountain Geyser, which erupts every four hours. Another great place to hike or run is the Abyss Pool, which is accessible for strollers.

Uncle Tom's Trail

Uncle Tom's Trail is a great place to start if you're looking for a trail to run or hike in Yellowstone. The two-mile loop is flat and mostly level. It features several waterfalls and thermal features.

Another popular trail is the Fairy Falls trail, which is 5.4 miles roundtrip.

The trail is not technically challenging, but it does have some steep steps, and the walk back up is a bit challenging. Fortunately, handrails and benches help guide you along the way.

The hike takes about one to two hours and offers plenty of shade.

The trails are often closed for maintenance but are well-maintained and provide scenic views. Taking the time to explore Uncle Tom's Trail is a unique experience. It allows you to experience the natural beauty of Yellowstone National Park in an incredibly scenic way.

Whether you're a novice or an experienced athlete, Uncle Tom's Trail offers plenty of opportunities for adventure.

Another trail highlight is Artist Point, where you can enjoy the sweeping views of the river below. You can also catch a glimpse of Lower Falls from this vantage point. The trail has a short elevation gain of 50 feet and is accessible to wheelchair users.

The first half of the trail is flat and easy. After that, you'll run through meadows and fragrant pine forests and pass some hydrothermal features. The trail also passes by Clear Lake and Ribbon Lake.

Upper Geyser Basin

One of the best places to visit in Yellowstone National Park is the Upper Geyser Basin, a geyser formation near the Firehole River. Although this area is overly hot for most life, it is still one of the most popular attractions. If you're interested in seeing the newest geysers and sulfur vents, plan to visit this part of the Park.

The Upper Geyser Basin is best explored on foot. Visitors can visit the Old Faithful Visitor Center, which has information about the Park's geysers and predicted eruption times. It's best to plan your trip around the predicted eruption times if you want to see the geysers at their most active.

The Upper Geyser Basin contains the largest concentration of geysers in the world. The area features hot springs, wildlife, and boardwalks for hiking and biking. You can spend two hours exploring the basin's many geysers. If you don't like hiking, consider taking a scenic ride on the Park's paved or dirt trails.

The Upper Geyser Basin is close to the Firehole River, which makes it easy for people with limited mobility to explore. The prominent landmark of the basin is the Old Faithful geyser, one of the most beautiful things to see in Yellowstone.

The Giantess Geyser is the star of Geyser Hill, but t rarely erupts. However, it influences the behavior of other hydrothermal features in the Upper Geyser Basin. The geyser shoots water about 150 to 200 feet into the air and is one of the most spectacular features in the area.

Beaver Ponds Trail

You can spend a whole day hiking the Beaver Ponds Trail in Yellowstone National Park. This scenic route winds through old forests and meadows from Wyoming to Montana. Along the way, you'll see several small ponds home to beavers. These ponds are what give the trail its name.

The trail begins at the Historic Ranger Station and follows a level trail for the first half-mile. Hiking the trail clockwise is recommended to enjoy the panoramic views of the surrounding mountains.

However, starting your day early is best, as the high sun can diminish the views.

The trail follows Clematis Creek, crossing it several times before beginning its climb up the valley's north side. After cresting the mountain on the other side, the trail winds through meadows and mixed forest until it reaches the first pond at 2.2 miles.

The Beaver Ponds Trail is a popular hike in Yellowstone National Park and can be reached from the hotel or restrooms. You should pay an entrance fee to enter Yellowstone National Park. There is ample parking along the trail. You can also camp at the trailhead or take a taxi to the trailhead.

Mount Washburn

The views of the Grand Tetons are spectacular, and hiking or running on Mount Washburn is a great way to exercise. You may also spot some wildlife, including bighorn sheep and bears.

The best time to hike or run on Mount Washburn is early morning before it gets too hot. Whether you're hiking or running, make sure to stay safe. Wild animals can be aggressive and can kill or injure people.

Mount Washburn is also home to one of the Park's three fire lookout towers. These towers have interpretive exhibits and restrooms. One of the lookouts is also staffed by firefighters, who watch for fire activity during the summer.

Visiting the lookout is a great way to get shelter from the wind and enjoy the extensive views. On clear days, you might even see big horn sheep. The Mount Washburn trail is one of the most popular hiking trails in the Park. The 1,400-foot trail offers varied plant life and open views. The summit is a stunning place to stand, with restrooms and enclosed decks for resting.

There are more than 1,000 trails to choose from in Yellowstone National Park. Hiking trails range from short hikes under a mile too long backpacking treks over 40 miles. To find the right trail for your fitness level, you can use the Park's activity tracker.

Mount Washburn is capped by a fire lookout tower, one of the three primary lookout towers in the Park. The tower also has an enclosed viewing area, which is accessible to the public.

The lookout was named for Henry Washburn, who led the 1870 Washburn expedition and led the first documented ascent of the mountain on August 28, 1870. Before the first recorded ascent, other explorers climbed the peak. For more info...

Yellowstone Lake

Yellowstone Lake is the largest body of water within Yellowstone National Park, covering 136 square miles and 110 miles of shoreline. At 7,732 feet above sea level, this body of water is the largest in the park. It is home to several wildlife and plants and is a popular outdoor recreation destination.

Many types of wildlife call Yellowstone Lake home, including elk, moose, bison, and mule deer. Black bears and grizzly bears are also frequent visitors. These animals feed on the fish that swim in the spring streams. Foxes and mountain lions have also been spotted in and around the lake.

This region has several interesting geological formations

Yellowstone Lake is located in the center of a large caldera formed by a massive volcanic eruption more than 640,000 years ago. This region has several interesting geological formations, including a crater known as the West Thumb. Seismic imaging of the region has revealed several faults, rifts, and tilted sediment layers.

Yellowstone Lake Overlook Trail is a nice 1.7-mile (2.7-kilometer) Loop trail.

The Yellowstone Lake research team is working on two major projects to study the lake's geology and climate. One involves geophysical and geochemical monitoring of the active system. Another involves collecting sediment core samples from the bottom of the lake.

The samples will help researchers determine the climatic and postglacial history of the lake.

Yellowstone Lake is a natural lake in Yellowstone National Park and is the highest-altitude mountain lake in the United States.

It is 132 square miles in size and has 141 miles of shoreline. The lake is home to six fish species, including the native cutthroat trout. Other wildlife species that call the lake home include the golden and bald eagles.


There are so many great places to run and hike in Yellowstone National Park; it's hard to narrow it down to just a few. But if we had to pick, our top three would be the following: 1) The trail around Yellowstone Lake, it's 2) The Upper Geyser Basin, and 3) Mammoth Hot Springs. Each trail offers something unique: stunning views of the lake or bubbling hot springs. So lace up your hiking boots and hit the trails — you won't be disappointed!

Remember Safety First:

Safety always comes first. Several important considerations before heading out on your run: notify someone where you’re going and when to expect you back, pack granola bars and water, and monitor changing weather conditions. Run with a friend or a group remember safety first.


The advice given on this website does not constitute or replace medical advice.

Please consult with a doctor before starting any exercise or nutrition plan.

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