Monday, September 21, 2009

Bunsen Peak hike, Yellowstone

Howdee all,

Another nice hike with awesome views of Electric peak.

Charlene, Jennifer and I did this hike while Jeff and Jimmy fished.

Elevation: 8,564 Feet
Recommended Season: Spring to Fall
USGS Maps: Trails Illustrated (Mammoth Hot Springs), Mammoth USGS quad.
Difficulty: Moderate
Length: 4.2 Miles
Elevation Gain: 1,300 Feet

DirectionsFrom Mammoth Hot springs, Travel 4.7 miles south. Immediately past the Golden Gate Bridge park on the left in the Glen Creek Trailhead parking lot.

Location Information
Bunsen Peak Trail, located south of Mammoth Hot Springs, offers a gradual 1,300 foot climb to the summit of Bunsen Peak. The trail climbs through sagebrush and burned pine and fir. The summit provides a panoramic view of the Blacktail Plateau, Swan Lake Flats, Absarokas Mountain Range, Electric Peak (10,992 ft.), Mount Holmes (10,336 ft.), and the Yellowstone River Valley. The peak is actually an ancient volcano cone and was named for Robert Bunsen who did early research on geysers. Return by the same route or take the trail down the back side past Osprey Falls trailhead (about 2 miles) and return via the Old Bunsen Peak Road TrailBunson peak hike_20090901_005

As we begin our assent we leave the road below us..Bunson peak hike_20090901_006Some elevation gain and the views start coming…Bunson peak hike_20090901_009 A lake in the distance…would love to hike out there…Bunson peak hike_20090901_012 More distant blue lakes and mountains..Bunson peak hike_20090901_014

A hidden surprise on our trip to the summit..

Dusky GrouseBunson peak hike_20090901_019Getting close to the summit ..and distant views of Electric peak.. Bunson peak hike_20090901_023 Electric Peak…

will have to hike there next time we visit!Bunson peak hike_20090901_031 At the summit…I

love this ..whoever created this rock art did an awesome job.

Bunson peak hike_20090901_033 So I took a few photos..again Electric PeakBunson peak hike_20090901_037 Weathered wood

Bunson peak hike_20090901_038 Cotton ball cloudsBunson peak hike_20090901_039 Weathered wood sculptures

Bunson peak hike_20090901_041 Bunson peak hike_20090901_042

Time to head down…another way…Bunson peak hike_20090901_043 Close encounters with…??

who knows? grasshopper? cricket?

Bunson peak hike_20090901_047 Small bug..??

looks kind of like a stinkbug..

Bunson peak hike_20090901_045 Down the mountain and hiking thru meadows…Bunson peak hike_20090901_053

The last leg of the hike is on an old roadbed..

I believe these are more sage grouse..but I didn't see any yellow around the eye..

(Dusky Grouse...ID by my fellow Bird Bloggers, Larry Jordon, and Rob Miller)

Thanks Guys!

Bunson peak hike_20090901_054

Need birdie ID helpBunson peak hike_20090901_059Any confirmations….or ID welcome.Bunson peak hike_20090901_064Another wonderful day…Great hike…Great views..

I Highly recommend this hike…short..and sweet… a good workout. Bunson peak hike_20090901_068

See ya…more Yellowstone Hikes to come…


  1. Another wonderful walk and views. The scenery at Yellowstone is awesome. The stone artwork is cool and the weathered wood. Maybe the grouse could be female Spruce Grouse but I am just a beginning birder so do not hold me to it.
    Thanks for sharing your hike to the peak.

  2. you really got some great pictures dawn- love the cricket (well and all tthe rest too)


  3. I love living vicariously through your hikes Dawn! My, what views!!

  4. Wow, yet another wonderful hike with awesome views. I love natures sculptures, and the rock carn is very unusual. Great captures as always Dawn.

  5. Dawn, I would lean toward Dusky Grouse (called Blue Grouse before 2006). The Greater-Sage Grouse would have a black belly and pointed tail. Don't expect all of the field markings to be present as most of these were probably juveniles. Spruce Grouse would generally have shorter tails. Great pictures, I can't wait to get back there.

  6. Wonderful photos sicksta! Glad you had quality hiking time with eldest sicksta!

  7. That's some serious hiking. The views are spectacular.

  8. What a beautiful hike Dawn. It looks like you hit Yosemite at just the right time. Great captures of all the cool stuff you saw too.

    The birds look like juvenile Blue Grouse to me and your Sage Grouse, without seeing its belly, looks like a male Blue Grouse to me, especially with the orange around the eye. My guess would be the Dusky variety of Blue Grouse as I see no light tail band on the tip of the tail. Hard to tell with juvenile females.

    You couldn't ask for a better photo to study than that last shot. Beautiful!

  9. Hi Dawn! I'm enjoying your photos and reading about your hiking Montana! We lived in Wyoming for 6 years, so I know how gorgeous the mountains are. We do miss them and the hiking. Enjoy!

  10. Beautiful country, and you got some great pictures. Lucky you to see the grouse!

  11. The colours and composition in your pictures are stunning (even the bugs) I want to go here too!

  12. Fantastic post! Beautiful photographs of the hike.

  13. Awesome pictures Nob.. Such beautiful views. What camera are you using for those shots and are you still using vivid? I will have to try that for my next scenery shots..

  14. Ha.. It looks like you have white pants on and I know that can't be right.. LOL

  15. eileeninmd
    Thanks Eileen..looks like the bird experts think the grouse are Blue and not Sage grouse..

    Thanks its a cricket?

    Oh good! I am glad I can bring you along!

    Thanks Gaelyn..I know that some parks dont take to people making Cairns...this one was very nice.

    Thanks so much for the ID..dusky grouse or blue grouse!

    Hi Sicksta..yeah oldest sicksta and I had a grand time!

    Thanks Andy!

    Larry Jordan
    Thanks Larry...Looks like you experts have ID the Dusky Grouse..
    Thanks so much!

    Oh lived in wyoming for 6 years! why did you leave? Awesome place!

    Thanks Wren..yeah..we saw many..and looks like my birdie expert friends have ID them as Dusky Grouse.

    Oh Ruth .you should go to is a most amazing place.

    Thanks ..its such a treat to be in Yellowstone!

    Thanks tink..I use the Panasonic lumix always when hiking. I sometimes use vivid...but also can use live writer to make them more vivid..u know in person it is always more vivid than the i like to pump them up to what I remember them to be.
    The pants I was wearing were beige..LOL..

  16. Hi Dawn. Thanks for leaving a comment on 'Time for Change'. Much appreciated.
    Great views from your Yellowstone walks. I would rather be with you than working my notice. Have fun. FAB.

  17. The Early Birder
    Thanks for you comment as well...hope u can get to yellowstone.

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  19. I was looking for a good TOPO map to put on my blog since I just blogged about this particular hike that we did back in 2005 and I came across your blog! Great pictures! I really enjoy this hike a lot, I've done it twice so far! I'll have to check out more of your blog!

  20. I can't believe that the sky can be so blue!!!!

  21. In 1991 I drove up from Dunraven Pass to Mt. Wahburn but I do not recall a parking area at the top kust a flat grass field with a bear proof waste bin There was another peak to climb Where was I???


ok what do you really think?????