Beaver Ponds Loop
The Beaver Ponds Trail is a popular hiking circuit in the northwest corner of Yellowstone National Park. This trail crosses over the Wyoming/Montana border as it winds its way through sagebrush, meadows, and forest to the wetlands of Beaver Ponds. This route is family-friendly and a great way to enjoy a day exploring the beauty of Yellowstone National Park.
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Route Description for Beaver Ponds Loop
The Beaver Ponds Trail is a gorgeous route in Yellowstone National Park. This trail is popular, and you will likely run into other folks on the trail, but it is seldom crowded. The Beaver Ponds loop does have long stretches without any shade. Be sure to lather on sunscreen, wear a good sunhat, and bring more water than you think you’ll need on this hike. This trail can get buggy in the early summer, so bring some bug spray or wear long layers to combat the mosquitoes, especially if you are hiking in June or early July.
Mosquitos won’t be the only critters you’ll see on this trail. The Beaver Ponds Loop is a great place to see wildlife, including elk and deer. Bears are sometimes seen on this trail, so pack bear spray and ensure that everyone in your hiking party is familiar with bear safety protocols before hitting the trail. If you are an avid bird watcher, the Beaver Ponds Loop is a great place to see a wide variety of avian species. Bring along a set of binoculars and a guidebook to help identify what you see!
To hike the Beaver Ponds Loop, begin at the Beaver Ponds Trailhead, take the path on your left and stay right at the first two divides to hike the circuit clockwise. Hiking the trail in this direction will begin with a steep ascent, but don’t worry, the trail evens out less than a mile in and gets much easier. Approximately 2.4 km in, the trail will be intersected by a service road, cross over the road and continue along the hiking trail to stay on route. Just 1.3 km past the service road, you will cross over the border into Montana and arrive at the trail’s namesake: Beaver Ponds.
Take your time exploring the ponds and investigating the plethora of plant life and animal life that thrives in this little wetland. When you are ready to hike on, continue along the trail as it loops back to the Beaver Ponds Trailhead, where you began.
The Beaver Ponds are a collection of natural ponds on the Montana side of Yellowstone National Park that are home to beavers, muskrats, and a wide range of water fowl.
Frequently Asked Questions
How long is the Beaver Ponds Trail in Yellowstone?
The Beaver Ponds Trail is a 9.7 km long hiking circuit in Yellowstone National Park.
Insider Hints for Beaver Ponds Loop
- This route can be hiked clockwise or counterclockwise. Hiking clockwise will start with a steep ascent that becomes a gradual downhill walk for the rest of the way. If you hike counterclockwise, you will climb gradually for the whole hike and end with a steep descent.
- We recommend bringing along a set of hiking poles on this route.
- Pack a picnic lunch and make a full day of it! This trail has so much to see and explore.
Getting to the Beaver Ponds Loop Trailhead
This hike begins at the Beaver Ponds Trailhead in Mammoth.
Beaver Ponds Loop Elevation Graph
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Beaver Ponds Loop Reviews
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