Crystal Falls in Yellowstone National Park can be one of the more overlooked waterfalls in this 3,400 plus square mile park.
This is likely due to being surrounded by two huge and superimposing big brother waterfalls...109 foot, Upper Yellowstone Falls and 308 foot, gargantuan Lower Yellowstone Falls.
I found out about Crystal Falls while researching a little before our trip to Yellowstone National Park for our honeymoon in 2020.
Our goal on this trip, like most others is to see as many waterfalls as we can, so it just made sense to me to visit this one on our hike around the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone.
Although this waterfall is known to be less spectacular than it's gigantic neighbours in the canyon, I knew from studying several maps of the area that we could hike right past it on the way toward the others.
So, that's exactly what we did.
We took the trail from the main Lower Falls parking lot just off of Grand Loop Road on the brink of Lower Yellowstone Falls trail for a short stint and then detoured toward Upper Yellowstone Falls via the Crystal Falls trail route.
The trail offered some great viewpoints of the canyon along the way.
After traversing a quaint little bridge across the creek that forms Crystal Falls...
We proceeded to a dedicated rocky viewpoint spot just up the hill and around a small bend of the canyon.
This was where we most enjoyed the falls and shot our best photos of it, as well as where we stopped to relax and enjoy the carnivore lunch we had packed.
After lunch and a few pictures, we finished out our Upper Falls Yellowstone hike.
Fast Facts about Crystal Falls - Yellowstone National Park:
Height: 129 feet
Location: Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone
Local Weather: Yellowstone National Park
Dog Friendly: NO (only within 100 feet of parking lots)
Camping: Several areas in the park including at the canyon
Cell Service: Spotty - Plan accordingly
Nearest Emergency Room: Lake Clinic (37 minutes from falls)
Food Nearby: Canyon Lodge Eatery (open seasonally) - Best advice is to pack a lunch just in case.
As stated above, we started our hike on the north side of the canyon from the Lower Falls parking lot and it worked out great for us.
But if you are so inclined, you could also start from the south side of the canyon, parking in the lot between the Upper Falls and Uncle Tom's Trail.
Note: Uncle Tom's Trail was closed during our visit and remains closed at the time of this writing. Be sure to research this trail's status before you go, as it presents perhaps the most intimate views of the Lower Yellowstone River Falls.
Anyway, you could park in the south canyon parking lot, take in the views of the Upper Falls and then make your way by Crystal Falls on the way to the north side of the canyon.
Either way, if you visit this are of Yellowstone National Park, you should definitely make Crystal Falls a part of your visit.
Jan 19, 22 02:09 PM
Jan 12, 22 06:50 PM
Jan 09, 22 09:38 AM