Difficulty: 1
Time To Complete: 1.0
Distance: 2.0
Seasonality: Summer, Fall
Land Website: Hiking in Yellowstone National Park
Hiking in Yellowstone National Park
Topo Map:
Fees Permit: Yes
Park Entrance Fee
Dog Friendly: No
Destination Highlights: Good For Beginners, Great For Families


This hike is well-travelled for a reason: it gives a chance for a relaxed, up-close experience with an impressive geyser in a backcountry setting.  One of the crown jewels of Yellowstone.


This is an easy hike to a well-known and popular geyser. The name Lone Star was given to the geyser due to its solitary location and separation from Old Faithful and the Upper Geyser Basin and thus has nothing to do with Texas, the Lone Star State, despite popular sentiment. Lone Star Geyser erupts every two to three hours and can spray water as high as 50 feet into the air. The trail also offers views of the Firehole River.

What Makes It Great

The level trail to Lone Star Geyser is actually an old service road. The road is paved but closed to vehicular traffic except for bicycles. The first portion of the trail parallels the Firehole River. The trail’s width allows for the plethora of people visiting Lone Star Geyser each day to cordially share the same route. Approximately one-half mile before the geyser, there is a junction with the Spring Creek Trail. Keep right. The pavement ends about 100 feet before the geyser. If you do not want to hike on the paved road, an alternative route exists. Hikers can also access Lone Star Geyser from the Fern Creeks Trailhead located 1.7 miles north of the Lone Star Geyser Trailhead. This option is a 6.4-mile out-and-back hike.

Lone Star Geyser’s eruptions are the result of snowmelt runoff percolating into the ground and becoming superheated by the Yellowstone hotspot.

Who is Going to Love It

Larger groups looking to walk together will love the Lone Star Geyser hike. The ease of walking, combined with the larger-than-normal trail width, provides opportunities for more of a side-by-side or social walking experience. Families with young children will love this trail for the same reason. Beginner hikers and geyser aficionados looking for a new hike away from the Upper, Biscuit, or Norris Geyser Basins will also love the Lone Star Geyser hike.

Directions, Parking, & Regulations

From the Old Faithful Interchange: Drive 1.9 miles east and park at the Lone Star Geyser Trailhead on the south side of the road.  Parking is free with an Entrance Pass.

Stay on the trails and boardwalks in all Yellowstone National Park geyser basins. People have been injured or have died as the result of coming in contact with boiling water in Yellowstone National Park. Scalding water underlies most of the thin, breakable crust in thermal areas.

Featured image provided by Yellowstone National Park