Things To Do In Yellowstone Lake

Yellowstone Lake is located at 7,733 feet above sea level. It is the largest high elevation lake in the lower 48 states and situated in North America. This lake freezes completely in the month of late December or early January. Yellowstone Lake will be cold year-round and the water temperature will be around 5 degrees celsius. If you go towards the shoreline, both through north and east, you will be able to see the snow-capped mountains rising across the lake. It has the largest population of wild cutthroat trout. 

The Yellowstone Lake drains north from its outlet, the Yellowstone River which is at the Fishing Bridge. Be sure to visit the place called ‘Lake Village’ and you can enjoy the view by sitting on the porch of the Lake Lodge. There are many attractive places near the lake like the Fishing Bridge, Lake Village, Bridge Bay, and the Eastside. 

Things to do in the Fishing Bridge, Lake Village, Bridge Bay, and the East:

  • Drives- Gull Point Drive and Lake Butte Scenic Drive
  • Hydrothermal Features- Mud Volcano and Steamboat Point
  • Other Natural Features- Mary Bay, Natural Bridge, Sedge Bay, Storm Point, Sylvan Pass, and Yellowstone Lake
  • Visitor Services- Bridge Bay Campground, Bridge Bay Marina, Fishing Bridge General Store, Fishing Bridge Visitor Center, Fishing Bridge RV Park, Lake General Store, Lake Hotel and Cabins, and Lake Lodge Cabins

Best hiking trails in Yellowstone Lake

Storm Point Trail

Storm Point Trail is located near Lake Village and it is an easy 2-mile loop hike. This hiking trail starts in the open meadows that provide a view of  Yellowstone Lake and Indian Pond. It passes close to the side of the pond before turning right into the forest. The trail goes through the trees and out to scenic, that is the wind-swept Storm Point. There is a rocky area near the point which is the home to yellow-bellied marmots. If you follow the shoreline to the west, the trail loops back through the lodgepole forest and it returns to the Indian Pond. 

Natural Bridge Trail

Natural Bridge Trail is about a 51-foot cliff of rhyolite rock that cuts through Bridge Creek. The trails follow through the forest for about 1.2 km and it joins the service road. Then it continues to the right for about 0.6 km to the Natural Bridge. It is short but a steep trail to the top of the bridge that starts in front of the interpretative exhibit. The top of the bridge is closed for hiking and biking, to protect the fragile resource. Before the natural bridge, the trail crosses a creek, and then it follows along the cliff before rejoining the road. Make sure to take cautions along the creek for slippery and wet rocks.

Avalanche Peak Trail

To the right of the creek and across the road from the parking area, the hiking trail enters the forest and starts its steep ascent which is about 2100 feet in 2.1 miles. If you hike over a mile, you will arrive at the base of the large bowl of Avalanche Peak. Then it will continue towards the left and switch back over a large talus slope to an open area that is below the summit. You will have to follow the trail up to the narrow ridgeline and have to cross it safely with caution. Once you make this hike, you will be able to see the stunning views of the park’s tallest and remote alpine peaks. You will have to take the same route to return back. 

Elephant Back Mountain

Elephant Back Mountain trail is about 800 feet in 2.4 km through the dense lodgepole forest. In just 0.8 of a mile, the trail splits into a loop. The shortest route to the top is taking the left side, even though both will join at the overlook. And it will offer a beautiful panoramic view of Yellowstone Lake and its surrounding area. 

Pelican Creek Trail

Pelican Creek Trail is short but a different trail travels through the forest to the lakeshore before you loop back to the trailhead. It is a beautiful place for birding and a scenic introduction to different varieties of Yellowstone’s habitats. 

Most popular things to do near Yellowstone Lake

  • Hiking Trails
  • Mountains
  • National Parks
  • Bodies of Water
  • Outdoor Activities

Best experiences near Yellowstone Lake

  1. Yellowstone Old Faithful, waterfalls, and wildlife day tour
  2. VIP safari of Yellowstone from West Yellowstone
  3. Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone Rim and loop hike with lunch
  4. Yellowstone National Park- Full day lower loop tour from Jackson Hole
  5. Yellowstone lower loop full-day tour

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