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Lamar to Hoodoo Basin
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Trip Info:
Duration: 7 DAYS  
Distance:  50 MILES 
Difficulty: 5/5
Cost per person: $1850  
$300 non-refundable deposit
AGES 18+

Trip Description:


Are you a experienced backpacker? Are you a Yellowstone Enthusiast? Are you looking for a remote and challenging trip?

If so, this is the trip for you!


On this backpacking trip from Lamar Valley to the rugged and remote Hoodoo Basin, we will hike deep into the eastern edge of the park where few ever go. You will find true solitude, untouched scenery, pristine mountain habitat and haunting landscape. Welcome to the real Yellowstone!

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We will meet the evening before our trip starts in Bozeman, Montana at 5:00 pm, at a predetermined hotel. If the meeting is held at a different hotel than you are staying, your guide will gladly provide transportation to and from the meeting.  In this meeting, we will do a general orientation that will cover introductions, trip itinerary, safety precautions, pack fitting and group gear distribution. Most importantly, this is a chance to meet with your guide to discuss the personal gear and clothes that you plan on bringing; your guide will offer advice about what to bring and what to leave behind for a successful and comfortable trip.  This meeting generally lasts one hour.


  • Travel time from Bozeman: 3 Hours

  • Distance: 5.6 Miles

  • Difficulty: Moderate

We will start with a early pickup in Bozeman, and make our way to the North Entrance of Yellowstone. During the drive, we will stop for breakfast along the Yellowstone River, then stop for coffee in the town of Gardiner. From there, we will drive through the Roosevelt Arch, and once in the park will have the chance for look for wildlife along the amazing drive. When we enter the world-famous Lamar Valley, you will immediately see why it’s called the "Serengeti of the West"! Once at the trailhead, we will pack up and hit the trail. The valley is filled with wildlife— you never know what you’ll see the first day of this trip... bison, badger, pronghorn, wolf, bear! When we get to camp,  we'll settle in, possibly take a evening stroll and keep our eyes peeled for more animals.


  • Distance: 10.3 Miles

  • Difficulty: Hard (due to long distance and slight elevation changes)

Today will have us traveling farther into the canyon, with its ever-rolling hills and river vistas, we will reach our trail junction and turn up Miller Creek. The trail starts to feel really remote and you’ll quickly start to wonder how many other people even hike this trail. With a 10.3 mile hike, this will probably be the toughest of the trip, but the elevation gain isn’t huge, and at the days end you will feel satisfied with the miles you have put in. Once camp is set up, your guide will prepare a well-deserved and nutritious dinner, and you can sit back and relax!



  • Distance: 6.3 Miles

  • Difficulty: Hard (due to elevation gain and loss)

Day three will be epic! We'll start off with a quick and protein-filled breakfast, and after a few miles of gradual elevation, we will start to climb. The views are incredible and we have a very high chance of seeing wildlife.


  • Distance: 5-10 Miles

  • Difficulty: Moderate

Now that we are in the heart of the Hoodoo Basin, we will leave camp set up and use day packs to explore this odd, beautiful, strange and scenic wonder of Yellowstone's backcountry. The hoodoos are a mysterious landscape and will have you searching for bears and Bigfoot.


  • Distance: 9-10 Miles

  • Difficulty: Hard (due to long distance)


Today will be a rewarding day as we cover a long distance. The views will be totally different as we
retrace our steps and you have the chance to double your wildlife encounters. After the long hike you
will be left with a sense of accomplishment and earn your dinner tonight!


  • Distance: 8 Miles

  • Difficulty: Moderate


After we break down camp, drink a hot cup of coffee, and eat a  filling breakfast, we will head back down into Lamar Valley after passing the junction of Miller Creek. The mileage will go by quickly as we travel over rolling hills through Lamar Valley.  We'll be on the lookout for wildlife, hoping for a chance to spot a bear, badger or wolf.  Once we get to camp, we'll settle in for our last night on the Lamar River.


  • Distance: 5.6 Miles

  • Difficulty: Easy

  • Travel time to Bozeman: 3 Hours (estimated arrival is 4:30 pm)


The hike out of Lamar Valley will be twice as enjoyable as the first day; not only will you be well-acclimated to Yellowstone’s high altitude, your backpack will be much lighter and your body will be well-conditioned. All this with an early start to the day will give us great possibility to spot wildlife as we get a second go at the world famous "Serengeti of the West"! Once at the van, we'll enjoy a big, fresh lunch, cold drinks and beautiful drive through the Northern Range!

Trip Variations:

Nomadic By Nature always tries our best to follow the itinerary as closely as possible.  However, there may be slight variations based on the National Park Service permit system and the ever-changing dynamics of the outdoors. 

Gear Checklist 
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All backpacking gear is provided by Nomadic by Nature, including backpacks, tents, sleeping bag, sleeping pad, trekking poles, group cooking supplies, and more.  

Click below to review the checklist of what is provided, and what you'll need to bring on your backpacking trip in Yellowstone National Park. 

Travel Logistics
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Due to the nature of the Park Service’s permit system, Nomadic By Nature will not know the exact dates of your trip until April.  As soon as we get our permit dates, NBN will notify you immediately.  We strongly recommend making your accommodation and flight reservations at that time.


All NBN backpacking trips will depart from Bozeman, Montana.  Bozeman International Airport is 10 miles from Bozeman’s downtown. We ask all guests to arrive in Bozeman the day before the trip starts, so they can attend the pre-trip meeting, which will be at 5 pm the night before.  If your flight is delayed, please reach out to Nomadic By Nature.

We strongly recommend NOT flying out the same day that the trip ends.  With long drive times and unpredictable wildlife encounters along the roads, it is hard to predict a precise time that we will arrive back in Bozeman.


Nomadic By Nature is not responsible for providing accommodation the night before the trip, or the night we return from the trip.  However, we have a corporate rate with the C'mon Inn in Bozeman.  Be sure to ask about the rate when you book with us!


By getting in shape before you start your backpacking trip you'll be able to enjoy your trip without worrying about aches and pains. Training for the trip not only helps yourself out, it helps the whole team accomplish the goal and stay safe and comfortable out there.

Check out our recommendations for training for a Nomadic by Nature backpacking trip.

Refund & Cancellation
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Cancellation policy is per person.

  • Cancel 30 or more days prior to trip departure, refund less the $300 deposit and a $60 dollar processing fee

  • Cancel less than 30 days prior to trip departure, receive a trip credit.

    • Trip credits are for the full trip amount and are good for two years.

For more information, please see Terms and Conditions at the bottom of the page.

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  • Guests are no longer required to wear masks while in vehicles to and from the trailhead

  • Hand-washing stations and hand sanitizer are provided

  • All dishes will be cleaned using soap and bleach

  • All gear will be cleaned after each trip

  • Guests are asked to stay home if they are experiencing Covid-19 symptoms

Why Nomadic By Nature?
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It's a lot of planning and a big commitment -- you don't want to choose just any outfitter or guide to take you into the wilderness for a several day stretch. Our experience is vast, personally and professionally, and we want you to be confident in choosing Nomadic By Nature. To learn more about our background and passion for backpacking and the outdoors, click below to read our story. We have much to share and show you -- so we hope you'll join us for an unforgettable experience! 

Ready to Book?
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Send us an email at or reach out with a phone call at 707-479-8936, if you have any questions!

If you're ready to book, click the link below!

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