Last updated: May 16, 2022
Travel to two alpine lakes on this strenuous hike. Leaving from the Lupine Meadows Trailhead, the trail switchbacks up the mountains for five miles before reaching Surprise Lake. From there, it’s another quarter mile up to Amphitheater Lake. Both lakes offer views of the surrounding peaks, with Amphitheater Lake being situated just below the summit of Disappointment Peak. The trail gains 3,000 ft over five miles and can be hazardous for those not acclimated to high altitude. The best cure for altitude sickness is to retreat to a lower elevation.
Surprise and Amphitheater Lakes is a strenuous, 9.8 mi (15.8 km) RT out and back hike with 3,070 ft (940 m) of elevation gain.
Lupine Meadows Trailhead
From the Teton Park Road, turn at Lupine Meadows and follow a dirt road about a mile to the trailhead.
Permits are required for those planning to stay overnight in the backcountry. Visit the backcountry page to learn about obtaining a permit.
Surprise and Amphitheater Lakes are best accessed in summer after the snow melts and in fall before the first snow arrives. Hikers should use caution when traveling over snow and not attempt Surprise and Amphitheater Lakes unless they have previous snow experience and the proper equipment.
Time of Day
Surprise and Amphitheater Lakes is a strenuous, 9.8 mi (15.8 km) RT out and back hike with 3,070 ft (940 m) of elevation gain with an average slope of 13%. The trail includes steep switchbacks, narrow sections, and exposed roots and rock.