Lost Lake Hike (Yellowstone National Park)

The Lost Lake Hike is a great hike to a secluded 6 acre lake that is hidden away from the main roads in Yellowstone National Park and is only accessible through a hike. The Lost Lake Hike offers some amazing scenery to those who undertake this adventure in Yellowstone National Park. This is a spectacular day hike that the whole family will enjoy and it is well worth the trip.

Directions to Trailhead: To get to the trailhead for the Lost Lake Hike, from Tower Junction drive south toward the Roosevelt Lodge. If you are coming from Mammoth Hot Springs, head north toward the Roosevelt Lodge. Park near the Roosevelt Lodge. It is the same parking lot with the restrooms and recycling stations just short of the gas station there at Tower Junction. Walk past the gate up the road all the way to the Roosevelt Lodge. Do not turn, continue straight up to the road and on the back side of the Roosevelt Lodge you will run into the trailhead, it is not visible from the front side of the Roosevelt. Click Here for an interactive map of Yellowstone National Park. There is an entrance fee for Yellowstone National Park, but no permit is required to hike to Lost Lake.

Description of Trail: The hiking trail to get to Lost Lake was in great shape when we did this hike, except towards the end of the loop when the trail got confusing to follow due to the construction of the new ranger station near the Roosevelt Lodge. Other than that, the trail was in great shape and for most of the hike you are in the back country of Yellowstone National Park. The hike is 2.8 miles roundtrip and has about 300 feet of elevation gain to it. Lost lake is a beautiful mountain lake that covers roughly 6 acres. To reach the lake from the trailhead you head up a series of switchbacks from the Roosevelt Lodge. At the crest of the hill you have a choice to go right or left on the trail (there is a trail sign there as well), make a right and head to Lost Lake. The trail is a loop and you will end up coming right back to the Roosevelt Lodge. Another point of interest along this hike is the petrified tree that is about halfway around the loop.

Further Thoughts: This was probably the most enjoyable hike for myself while at Yellowstone National Park during this most recent trip. It was great for several reasons. First, was because of the elk and bison we saw while on the hike. Second, was because while we were hiking it began to snow a little from a thunderstorm that was on top of Mt. Washburn. Lastly, the views of the hike combined with the clouds of the thunderstorm on top of Mt. Washburn were spectacular. You will not be disappointed with the scenery this hike offers.

Lost Lake was very pleasant and while we were there, we noticed wolf tracks in the mud. They were very big canine tracks. One thing that is great about this hike is the views of the valley when you begin to come back down toward the Roosevelt Lodge. It is a great place to take pictures and to take in the sweeping views of the area. Lastly, we also saw a marmot on the hike. It was one of several marmots we saw while hiking in this area. Black bears are also known to frequent this area from time to time. Note, there is no fishing in Lost Lake. Bottom-line, this is a fun short hike in Yellowstone National Park.

Rating: Elevation Gain: 300 ft. (Easy), Distance: 2.8 Miles Roundtrip (Easy).

Time to Complete Hike: 1.5 - 2 hours.


View Lost Lake in a larger map


  1. My teenage children and I did this hike when we stayed at Roosevelt Lodge. Loved it!


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