Yellowstone National Park: Lone Star Trail

Camp in an active geyser basin teeming with wildlife.
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Camp in an active geyser basin teeming with wildlife.

A hyperactive geyser basin, good fishing, and extended backpacking options all boost the allure of this 17-mile out-and-back. Start on the Lone Star Trail, hiking along the Firehole River to the Lone Star Geyser, which erupts every 3 hours. Turn left onto the Shoshone Lake Trail and look for bison around trailside thermal areas. Keep climbing to Grants Pass (8,010 ft.) and the Continental Divide. Watch for moose after the Bechler River Trail junction as you descend along the Shoshone Creek to forested lakeshore. After taking the right fork of the Shoshone Lake Trail past a patrol cabin, you’ll see spur trails to the Shoshone Geyser Basin.

Careful: Signage and boardwalks are scarce. The North Shore Trail contours past the spurs to the splendid campsite 8R5 fronting Basin Point Bay; it’s the closest site to the geyser basin.

Info: For park news and trail updates, visit http://ynp.blogspot.com.

Backcountry office: (307) 344-2163; www.nps.gov/yell

-Hike provided by Andrew Dean Nystrom, author of Top Trails: Yellowstone & Grand Teton National Parks (Wilderness Press)

Trail Facts

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Waypoints

Lone Star Trailhead

Location: 44.4449654, -110.8048172