Whether you are planning on hiking for the duration of your trip or simply want to learn more about National Parks, you may be wondering about Yellowstone elevation and just how high up this park is. What might some of the highest peaks in Yellowstone National Park be, and can you hike any of them?
In this article, we will go over just how high the highest peak in Yellowstone National Park is, along with whether or not you can hike to the top of it. We will also go over some of the most popular options within the park in terms of hiking, and what you should know about hiking or exploring at Yellowstone’s high elevations. Let’s get started now!
|Yellowstone National Park||Elevation Facts and Figures|
|Highest Peak||Eagle Peak (11,372 feet)|
|Honorable Mentions||Electric Peak (10,992 feet), Avalanche Peak (10,566 feet), Mount Sheridan (10,308 feet), Mount Washburn (10,243 feet)|
|High Elevation Trails||Avalanche Peak Trail, Sepulcher Mountain Trail, Observation Peak Trail, Bunsen Peak Trail, Mount Washburn Trail|
|Average Yellowstone Elevation||7,000-9,000 feet above sea level|
|High Elevation Tips||Bring bear spray, plenty of water, and a friend for company and safety!|
What is the Highest Peak in Yellowstone National Park?
The highest peak in Yellowstone National Park is Eagle Peak, residing at a lofty 11,372 feet above sea level. Located amongst the mountains in the Absaroka Range, Eagle Peak is in Wyoming and towers above many other mountains in the southeastern corner of Yellowstone. In fact, this mountaintop is so high that you can only hike to its peak in a select few unique ways.
Should you be interested in hiking to the top of Yellowstone’s highest peaks, one of the most accessible trails is actually found outside of Yellowstone National Park. However, you should note that reaching Eagle Peak from outside Yellowstone requires a hike in and of itself. The average one-way distance for reaching and hiking Eagle Peak is 15 miles!
If you are inside Yellowstone, Eagle Peak is also an average of 15 miles from just about any road or parking area, unless you go by boat. You can row or sail across Yellowstone Lake, hike through the river valleys, and begin your ascent to the top of Eagle Peak this way- but it’s safe to say that the average hiker opts for trails that are a bit more accessible!
What is the Average Elevation in Yellowstone National Park?
Yellowstone varies in elevation, but averages roughly 7,000 to 9,000 feet above sea level. 8,000 feet in elevation is likely where you will find yourself as you explore, whether it be by car or by foot. Depending on the time of year that you visit, some higher elevations in Yellowstone National Park may be inaccessible, given the harsh winter weather that it experiences every single year.
Another important thing to note about hiking at high elevations in Yellowstone, especially when considering what season to visit, is the presence of bears. If you choose to hike in September or October in Yellowstone, be aware that you may be sharing your trail with bears! Many grizzly or black bears forage alongside tourists on hikes. Pay particular attention should you choose to hike in fall.
However, should you choose to visit during the three other seasons of the year, particularly summertime, you can hike at higher elevations with ease! But what might some of the best high elevation peaks in Yellowstone be, and what ones can you hike? Let’s talk about that now!
Best High Elevation Peaks in Yellowstone
There are a number of fantastic high elevation peaks in Yellowstone National Park, but all of them still fall short compared to Eagle Peak. However, Yellowstone boasts just over 40 peaks that reach 10,000 feet above sea level or higher. And there are even more peaks at roughly 8,000 feet above sea level, likely contributing to Yellowstone’s average elevation!
When it comes to peaks that lie at 10,000 feet or higher, there are quite a few, including:
- Electric Peak (10,992 feet)
- Avalanche Peak (10,566 feet)
- Mount Sheridan (10,308 feet)
- Mount Washburn (10,243 feet)
Given all of these fantastic options, you may be wondering which options are hikable, and which ones give you the best views. Thankfully, there’s no shortage of hiking trails available in Yellowstone National Park. Let’s talk about some tips and tricks for your trip now!
Can I Hike at High Elevations in Yellowstone?
Yes, you can hike at high elevations in Yellowstone National Park, with proper preparation and research. You should know how to best access the hike that you are considering, though Yellowstone can help you with that by providing various maps and Park Ranger assistance. However, there are a number of tips that you should consider before hiking anywhere in Yellowstone, including:
- Always bring bear spray with you
- Hike in a group or with another person for safety and to share the experience
- Bring plenty of water, as resources are limited
- Wear sunscreen, no matter the season
When it comes to the views, many Yellowstone hikers say that you can’t go wrong with hiking Mount Washburn. With beautiful sights and taking an average of 3-6 hours, make sure you plan enough time for it. While Eagle Peak may be a lot more difficult to access, there are plenty of other hikes and high elevations to enjoy in Yellowstone National Park!
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