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    Artist’s Paintpots Trail

    This reflects the 10Adventures difficulty rating for each route. We aim to keep ratings consistent across regions.
    Very Easy
    This reflects the estimated time the majority of users will take on this trail. If you are slower, add time to the top-end figure. If you are fast, then you may complete this route faster than this time range.
    This reflects the return distance of this route as measured by the GPS file.
    1.6 km
    This reflects the total elevation gained throughout this route as measured by the GPS file. This includes all ascents and descents, and is higher than what is quoted in most route guides, which simply measure the distance between the starting-point and high-point of the route.
    31 m
    User Ratings
    These ratings are completed by users who have completed this trail and not subject to reviews by 10Adventures.
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    Directions to Trailhead

    The Artist’s Paintpots Trail is a wonderful route in Yellowstone National Park. This trail passes by a series of geothermal features including mudpots and steam vents. The Artist’s Paintpots trail is family-friendly and appropriate for hikers of all skill levels.

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    Route Description for Artist’s Paintpots Trail

    The Artist’s Paintpots is a collection of mud pots and hot springs in Yellowstone National Park. The boardwalk trail that tours these geothermal features can get busy, especially in the summertime. We suggest heading out on this trail early in the morning for the best views of these features. Although the Artist’s Paintpots Trail is well maintained, it is not wheelchair accessible or stroller-friendly.

    With an incredible collection of geothermal features, the Artist’s Paintpots trail is a great sample of the otherworldly beauty of Yellowstone National Park. This trail is an easy hike and a great route for families with children.

    To hike the Artist’s Paintpots Trail, begin at the Artist’s Paintpots Trailhead and follow the well-signed trail southeast. At the divide, take the path on your right to circle around the geothermal basin, going counterclockwise.

    Look first for the milky blue pools pigmented by silica in the water along the basin circuit. Then, just past the pools, look for the bubbling mud pots that give this area its name. A short climb in elevation just past the mud pots will bring you to a scenic overlook with panoramic views of Mount Holmes. From the overlook, descend along the boardwalk back to the start of the circuit.

    Once you’ve completed the circuit and find yourself back in familiar territory, simply retrace your steps back out to the Artist’s Paintpots Trailhead where you began.

    Trail Highlights

    The Artist’s Paintpots

    The Artist’s Paintpots are a collection of colorful hot springs and mud pots in Yellowstone National Park. The bubbling of the mud pots in this area is caused by escaping gasses including hydrogen sulfide and carbon dioxide. These geothermal features are extremely hot and can send clumps of hot mud flying toward the trail. Always keep a safe distance from the geothermal activity in Yellowstone National Park and never venture off-trail.

    Insider Hints for Artist’s Paintpots Trail

    Getting to the Artist’s Paintpots Trail Trailhead

    This hike begins at the Artist’s Paintpots Trailhead on Grand Loop Road.

    Route Information

    • Backcountry Campground


    • When to do

      May to November

    • Pets allowed


    • Family friendly


    • Route Signage


    • Crowd Levels


    • Route Type


    Artist’s Paintpots Trail Elevation Graph

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    Artist’s Paintpots Trail Reviews

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