Drive The Firehole Lake Loop

Firehole Lake Drive

Secluded area of Yellowstone. Easy drive with plenty of parking. Walking on boardwalks to see features up close. Beautiful sunset location.

Firehole Lake Drive is a 2 mile one way road, near the Lower Geyser Basin in Yellowstone National Park. This is one of the hidden gems in Yosemite where you'll find solitude and quietness. You may see a few people here on a busy day, but you can often find yourself alone.

While driving around the loop, there is ample parking for several unique thermal features in this area. Park in any of the pull off lots and walk out on the boardwalks to get an up close view - you can get closer to the thermal features than you might expect.

Photographing here at sunset can be tricky. With bright sun, and reflecting water, you need to keep your exposures down to avoid blowing out highlights. It's easy to recover dark shadow areas in post processing. Days with fog make the scene dramatically more interesting. Wildlife is possible here as well, as I've encountered a few bison.

Notable features, photographed above, include Firehole Lake, Pink Cone Geyser, White Dome Geyser, Great Fountain Geyser, and several smaller pools and fumaroles.

Pack List

  • Camera
  • Tripod
  • Polarizing filter
  • Neutral density filters
  • Backpack
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Activities Photography, Hiking
Skill Level Beginner
Season Spring, Summer, Autumn
Features
Easy Parking
Hot Springs
River
Scenic
Wildflowers
Wildlife

Reviews

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Overall rating: 

Hit It Up In Winter!

Beautiful spot within Yellowstone! Was able to experience it during winter when the ground was blankets with fresh snow. Only issue was we were not able to walk most of the boardwalks because Bison had taken over the area to keep warm. Nevertheless, an amazingly beautiful spot.

A great place to escape the crowds!

This spot is really close to some of the overwhelmingly crowded geyser basins, but most people end up passing it since you have to drive off the main highway. Instead of fighting for parking at the Upper, Biscuit, or Midway Basins, definitely take this drive instead. We went on a busy summer day, so there were still some people here, but the further you drive in, the more parking opportunities, so be patient!

Secluded and Other-wordly

The Firehole Lake Loop is definitely worth the few extra minutes it takes to visit. While many other locations in the park were busy, this loop was quiet. The hot springs, the mud pools were just as spectacular as any we saw at the park. Can see a lot in a short distance because many of the locations have only a short walk to the end of a boardwalk.


Please respect the places you find on The Outbound Collective.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More

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