The hiking guidebook made this hike seem like it was going to be really tough, with an 800 ft descent into the canyon and an equal climb out. The hike is as advertised a full 9.2 miles so it isn't a shorty but it wasn't as strenuous as the guidebook led us to believe. The initial 3 miles or so are on a road that is used only by park rangers and is relatively flat. The road gradually climbs on the way back to the Osprey Falls turnoff but then coming back it is mostly a down slope so that helps a lot. The turnoff for Osprey Falls was clearly marked (to the right) with a wooden park sign and we couldn't see how anyone would miss this. After the turnoff the path is flat, winding through some light wooded areas and does come pretty close to the canyon cliffs so it is good to keep an eye on where you are going so as not to walk off. Then the path gets steep and is a series of switchbacks descending to the river. The switchbacks are nicely done so there aren't any areas that are super steep. Views of the river are to be had all the way down and there were also birds and little furry animals to see as well. Once to the river the path flattens out for a short way to the base of the falls. The guidebook says you can go right up to the base of the falls but the path to there was narrow, muddy and it looked slippery so we didn't venture too close. The falls was magnificent and well worth the effort. But then you need to climb out. The climb out was surprisingly not as bad as expected and we made it back to the top easily. However, even though the day was quite cool and we were heavily layered going down the hill, we started stripping off jackets, pants legs, etc as we ascended. Walking up the hill was much hotter. There were some others on the hike but it certainly couldn't be called crowded. It is true what the guidebooks say about hiking in Yellowstone - if you get 5 min off the beaten path you are out in nature all by yourself. We were delighted with this hike.
Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.