West Thumb Geyser Basin in Yellowstone National Park

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West Thumb Geyser Basin

Overlooking Yellowstone Lake, the West Thumb Geyser Basin features unique hot springs and geysers right along the lake's edge.

  • See geysers, mud pots and hot springs, all along the shores of Yellowstone Lake.
  • Enjoy the multi-colored West Thumb Paint Pots.
  • See geysers that are under the surface of Yellowstone Lake.
  • Go on a sea kayaking tour to view the geysers from the water.

What can I see and do at the West Thumb Geyser Basin?

  • Thumb Paint Pots: These miniature mud volcanoes are smelly and unusual.
  • Abyss Pool: This bright blue pool reaches depths of 53 feet, right along the edge of the lake.
  • Fishing Cone: Located in the water of Yellowstone Lake, legend has it that mountain men could fish the lake and then immediately cook their fish in this boiling hot spring.
  • Yellowstone Lake Overlook Trail: From the West Thumb Geyser Basin parking area, follow the Overlook Trail on a 2-mile round trip trail with great views. For something shorter, follow the Duck Lake trail and marvel at the remnants of the 1988 fires.
  • Sea Kayaking: While you can't rent kayaks within the park, you can either bring your own (boat permit required) or join a tour. This is a fantastic way to see the West Thumb Geyser Basin from the water.

Where is the West Thumb Geyser Basin?

The West Thumb Geyser Basin is located at the southern junction of the Park Loop Road and about 22 miles north of the South Entrance. It is located on the west shore of Yellowstone Lake. A well maintained boardwalk provides easy access to all the geothermal features.

When can I visit West Thumb Geyser Basin?

The best time to truly experience West Thumb is when you can walk the boardwalks in the summer. Snowcoach tours offer access to the area in the winter.

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