Hike to Electric Peak

Electric Peak

Here's an electrifying hike.

Electric Peak got its name during the first climb in 1872 by the United States Geological Survey. Members of the Hayden Survey led by Henry Gannett experienced electrical discharges from their hands and hair after a lightning strike on the summit. Electric Peak is the tallest mountain in the Gallatin Range and rises to 10,969 feet.

The best way to see Electric Peak is by hiking its trail, a 20.8 mile light trafficked out-and-back trail. It’s not an easy hike. If you are an experienced hiker, you could do it in a day, but plan on 2 or 3 days of hiking and camping adventure for most folks.

The trail's primary use is hiking, camping, riding horses, and backpacking and is best used from June until September. You’ll see fields of wildflowers to views of the surrounding peaks and lots of wildlife on this trail, so bring along bear spray.

Remember, this is a 20.6-mile hike up the valley and through the forest. There will be creek crossings up to the base of Electric Peak and then to the summit. Once you get to the summit of Electric Peak, you’ll be able to enjoy unobstructed views across Yellowstone National Park on a clear day.

You will start your journey on the south side of Kingman Pass at Glen Creek Trailhead and trek through the sagebrush grasslands. I love the smell of sagebrush! Keep your eyes open for wildlife. Here in the plains, you’ll encounter mule deer, bears perhaps (Yikes! Bring that bear spray), and bison. There will be signs pointing your way, so watch for them. You’ll pass a few trail junctions first.

Once you are out of the fields, the trail continues up a river valley for about 2 miles and then enters a dense forest. At the 6th mile, continue straight at a 3-way junction (both across the river/creek at this point) and spend the night at campsite 1G3 or 1G4. The campsites are right by the creek.

The next morning, you must backtrack to the 3-way junction and turn left to take the trail that leads up to Electric Peak summit. You will hike about 10.3 miles. The route ends at Electric Peak. 

You made it! Now enjoy the view of Yellowstone, and on a clear day, the Grand Tetons off in the distance. You’ll follow the same trail in reverse to get back where you started. Enjoy! =]:)

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