Viewing the United States Largest Hot Springs from a New Perspective

MAMMOTH,Wyo. (KCWY) - Yellowstone has a new iconic attraction that may become as popular as Old Faithful and the Lower Falls of the Yellowstone Grand Canyon. The new trail to a stunning overlook of the Grand Prismatic Spring opened Tuesday.

Until now, most people would just see steamy water when they stood beside Yellowstone’s largest Hot Spring: Grand Prismatic.

What Yellowstone visitors can see now is stunning coloration, and a wide overlook view of what is also the United State’s largest hot spring. Visitors also see how large it is, when they see the tiny figures of all those people standing next to the spring.

Visitors from Europe, Texas, and Illinois who saw the view from the overlook the first day the trail opened said,

“Fantastic, magnifique!”
“Twelve out of ten. It’s more than perfect.”
“I think it’s gorgeous. It’s beautiful.”

In years past, people would just hike up the mountain to get the picture of the beautiful view of Grand Prismatic. One man paid with his life.

Yellowstone Public Affairs Assistant Jonathan Shafer said, “In 2014, a visitor was struck by a falling tree and killed on one of the paths that people had followed to the top of a hill nearby Grand Prismatic.”

Shafer said there were other problems with the pathfinders, “Visitors who traveled off trail created some resource damage.”

So, Yellowstone resource managers put up a fence to keep people from climbing the hill overlooking the spring.

Shafer said this spring they started the new trail, “The park has repaired that damage. And now we’ve created a different way for people to get that iconic view above Grand Prismatic Spring that people wanted to get for years.”

The safe trail is about a half mile from the Fairy Falls parking lot in the Midway Geyser basin. It is a little bit steep. But, the visitors who saw this stunning sight for the first time didn’t mind.

Phillip Kelley from Waterloo, Illinois remarked, “It was definitely worth the hike. I’m not much for hiking. But, for this, it was definitely worth the trip.”

Kelley took a colorful photo with his phone. Visitors may find this new
view as compelling and photogenic as Yellowstone’s most famous attractions.

If you plan to go to the new Grand Prismatic Overlook, remember, you’ll still need the right conditions to get the perfect shot: sun, and warm enough weather to burn off the spring’s steam.