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Observation Peak Trail, located near Canyon Village, offers a strenuous 11 mile roundtrip hike to Cascade Lake from either of its two trailheads. From the lake, this strenuous, 1,400 foot climb in 3 miles will take roughly 3 hours. The hike takes you to a high mountain peak for an outstanding view of the Yellowstone wilderness. The trail passes through open meadows and some whitebark pine forests. Past Cascade Lake, no water is available along the trail. Not recommended for persons with heart and/or respiratory problems.

Yellowstone has a designated backcountry campsite system, and a Backcountry Use Permit is required for all overnight stays. Each designated campsite has a maximum limit for the number of people and stock allowed per night. The maximum stay per campsite varies from 1 to 3 nights per trip. Campfires are permitted only in established fire pits. Wood fires are not allowed in some backcountry campsites. A food storage pole is provided at most designated campsites so that food and attractants may be secured from bears. Neither hunting nor firearms are allowed in Yellowstone's backcountry.

Permits may be obtained only in person and no more than 48 hours in advance of your trip.Permits are available from most ranger stations and visitor centers. In order to obtain the best information on trail conditions, permits should be obtained from the ranger station or visitor center nearest to the area where your trip is to begin. The Backcountry Use Permit is valid
only for the itinerary and dates specified. Backcountry travelers must have their permits in possession while in the backcountry.

Directions: From Canyon Junction, Travel 1.5 miles north on the Tower-Canyon Road to Cascade Lake Picnic Area. The other trailhead is accessed from a pullout 1/4 mile west of Canyon on the Norris-Canyon Road.

Elevation: 8,100 feet

Elevation Gain: 1,400 feet

Distance: 11 miles

Difficulty: Strenuous

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Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming

Visitor Information

The details, dates, and prices mentioned here were accurate at the time of publication.

Review by Wildernet Copyright © 2010 all rights reserved.