Last Updated: October 17, 2019
This Backcountry Situation report provides the most up-to-date conditions for Yellowstone’s Backcountry. Conditions are listed by area, then trail. Before heading out on the trail, make sure to review information about traveling safely in bear country, and familiarize yourself with our bear management areas. Depending on other activities you intend to pursue in the backcountry please reference our fishing, boating, and horse use regulations.
Permits are required for all overnight stays in the backcountry. Permits for backpacking and stock trips can be acquired at any backcountry office. Backcountry permits for boat trips are only available at Bridge Bay, Grant Village, and the South Entrance backcountry offices.
Offices are beginning to close for the season. Please reference the backcountry office schedules below to see where you can pick up a permit.
Grant Visitor Center (Backcountry office): Closed. Boat permits and AIS inspections available. Please call (406) 581-9040 to arrange an AIS inspection prior to arriving at the park, as you may not have cell phone reception on location.
Fall Travel Conditions
As we transition into the fall season expect trails to be a combinations of wet/ muddy / snowy.
Before deciding to have a campfire, check that your campsite allows for fires, and consider the current weather conditions. Campfires are only allowed in the designated fire ring. Currently there are no fire restriction in place.
The general fishing season is open. Check the fishing regulations for details.
Boating season is open.
Horse use requires either an overnight or day ride permit. Most trails are currently open for overnight horse use. Check individual trails descriptions below (further in the document) as to whether they are open to day use. Make sure to review our horseback riding page and to get a day ride permit.
Food Storage Reminder
Bear Management Area
Click on a region of the map for current backcountry conditions in that area.
Sepulcher/Beaver Ponds/Snow Pass area (1N4, 1K1, 1K2)
Glen Creek Trailhead – Fawn Pass & Electric Pass (1K3)
Bunsen Peak/Osprey Falls (1K4) (closed to stock use)
Bighorn Pass trail (Indian Creek, 1K5)
Mount Holmes area (1K6, 1K8)
Trailheads along Hwy 191 (from north to south)
Daly Creek/Black Butte/Sky Rim Trail/Shelf Lake (WK1, WK2)
Specimen Creek/High Lake/Crescent Lake/Sportsman Lake (WK3)
Bacon Rind (WK4)
Fawn Pass/Fan Creek (WK5)
Bighorn Pass (Hwy 191 - WK6)
Gneiss Creek/Cougar Creek (WK7/WK8)
Harlequin Lake Trail
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Blacktail Deer Creek Trail/Yellowstone River Trail/Black Canyon (1N5)
Lava Creek Trail/Rescue Creek Trail (1N2, 1N3, 1N6)
Hellroaring Creek/Coyote Creek/Buffalo Plateau (2K8, 2N1, 2N5, 2N2)
Buffalo Fork (2N3)
Garnet Hill (2K2)
Tower Fall Trail
Slough Creek (2K5, 2N4)
Pebble Creek (3K2, 3K4)
Bliss Pass (between Slough Creek and Pebble Creek)
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Specimen Ridge/Agate Creek/Yellowstone Picnic Area trailhead (2K4, 2K7)
Lamar River Trail - Soda Butte to Mist Creek Pass (3K1)
Cache Creek/Thunderer (3K1, 3K3)
Avalanche Peak (not suitable for stock)
Wapiti Lake trail/ Wrangler Lake/ Broad Creek/ Howard Eaton trail (4K7, 4N2, 4K8,5K2)
Pelican Valley/Turbid Lake (5K3)
South Rim and North Rim
Mount Washburn (4K9, 2K6)
7-Mile Hole (4K6)
Cascade, Grebe, Wolf & Ice Lake (4K2, 4K3, 4K4, 4K5, 4N4)
Mary Mountain/Hayden Valley & Cygnet Lakes (4N1, 4N3)
Solfatara (1K7, 4K1)
Lone Star (OK1)
Fairy Falls/Mystic Falls/Fountain Flats (OK4, OK5, OK6)
Mallard Lake (OK9, OK3)
Mary Mountain (OK7)
Summit Lake (9K9,OK4)
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Shoshone Lake/Lewis Lake (8K1, 7K2)
Lone Star Trail (OK1) & Howard Eaton Trail (OK2)
Bechler Meadows and Falls River area
Bechler Canyon/Bechler River trail
Boundary Creek/Dunanda Falls
Union Falls/Mountain Ash Creek
Pitchstone Plateau (8K4)
Beula Lake/South Boundary Trail west (8K5, 8K6)
Please email the Central Backcountry Office if you have any questions about specific areas.
Last updated: October 17, 2019