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Old Faithful - Yellowstone National Park

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Upper Geyser Basin: This geyser basin is the most concentrated area for geysers in the entire world with 150 geysers within a 1-square mile. While Old Faithful is the most famous geyser in the area, there are other geysers that are generally considered more spectacular. These include Grand, Castle, Riverside, Daisy, Grotto, Sawmill, and Beehive. There are several trails (walking and bike) and boardwalks that begin in the Old Faithful area that lead to all these geysers and other geothermal features. The trail to “Observation Point” rises 150 feet to provide a worthwhile overlook view of the area. An early morning hike to this point displays in unique and contrasted fashion, the rising multiple geyser steam vents in this valley. 

Old Faithful Geyser: Located in the Upper Geyser Basin, Old Faithful is recognized as the world’s most famous geyser and has become a recognized symbol of America’s first national park. The namesake, Old Faithful, is derived from its frequent and predictable eruptions. Prior to the 1959 earthquake, Old Faithful erupted 21 times per day. Today, Old Faithful erupts around 20 times per day averaging 74 minutes between eruptions, with eruption interval frequency between 60-110 minutes. When it does erupt, it can vary in height from 100-180 feet (average 135 feet), last between 1.5 to 5 minutes, and expel between 3,700 gallons to 8,400 gallons of water, with a temperature of around 204° F (95.6° C).


The park has created a good viewing area for Old Faithful eruptions, with a semi-circle boardwalk area around the perimeter with benches. This allows hundreds to view the grand event, but if you want a less crowded view of the eruption, the morning hours before noon and evening hours after 6:00pm are your best times.


Old Faithful Inn: Designed by architect Robert C. Reamer, Old Faithful Inn was constructed during 1903-1904 winter by over 1,500 craftsmen and included electric lights, heating, and hot water. Its iconic and majestic look reflects the “rustic architecture” designed to blend in with the natural surrounding landscape. To be in the structure is an awe-inspiring experience. Key features and accommodations in the Inn include:

  • A 15.5-foot-wide rock fireplace that extends upward through the roof of the 7-story structure and is faced with a 5-foot diameter clock with a 14 foot hanging pendulum.

  • An expansive and open lobby extending upwards 76 feet with views of the wood beams, tiered balconies, support beams and railings made of twisted logs, and rustic wooden furniture throughout. A great place to relax and take in the ambiance of days gone by.

  • Inn lodging ranging from rustic historic rooms with and without private bathrooms, to newer suites with queen beds and all the amenities.

  • Dining Room: Offers signature buffets for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Dinner reservations are required (307-344-7311).

  • Bear Paw Deli: Traditional deli options for breakfast, lunch, and dinner and ice cream options.

  • Bear Pit Lounge: Serving drinks, sandwiches, and appetizers.

  • Mezzanine Coffee Cart and Bar: Offering coffee in the morning and a drink in the evening.

  • Inn Gift Shop: Keepsakes, fine apparel, and the Inn Gallery devoted to regional carvings and bronzes, and several Native American items and artifacts.


Old Faithful Lodge & Cabins: A rustic lodge with log and stone pillar construction completed in the 1920s.

  • Lodge Cabins: Historic cabin units furnished with one double and one twin or two double beds. Frontier Cabins have a private bathroom with shower, Budget Cabins have only a sink. Shared bathroom with showers is nearby.

  • Lodge Cafeteria: Multiple serving stations with a variety of options for lunch and dinner, all with a view of Old Faithful Geyser.

  • Lodge Gift Shop: Several themed items and the largest selection of gifts, souvenirs, and apparel.

  • Lodge Bake Shop and Ice Cream: Your choice of muffins, bagels, sandwiches, and soft-serve ice cream.

Old Faithful Snow Lodge: This is a luxurious, yet rustic and contemporary facility constructed in 1999. It is open during the summer and winter seasons.

  • Western themed rooms with two queen beds, a bathroom, minifridge, hairdryer, coffee maker, and telephone. Accessible rooms come with one double and one twin bed, a private bathroom with roll-in showers and accessible toilets and sinks. Cabins are also available with private bathrooms.

  • Obsidian Dining Room: Breakfast is a la carte and buffet, and dinner has several entrée options.

  • Geyser Grill: Quick service for lunch and dinner and includes on-the-go choices.

  • Firehole Lounge: Serving beers, cocktails, and appetizers.

  • Bear Den Gift Shop: Features a variety of gifts, apparel, books, and other wildlife themed items. Rentals are available for excursions; in the summer bikes and in the winter skis.


Old Faithful Visitor Center: As with all Yellowstone Visitor’s Centers Park Rangers are available to provide assistance and are a wealth of knowledge about the surroundings, including geothermal features, the Yellowstone volcano, park research activities, and other important information relative to the park.

  • Young Scientist Exhibit Room: Hands-on exhibits, information stations, a geyser model, and even Ranger-led programs are all available here.

  • District Library: Information pertaining to all aspects of Yellowstone.

  • Geyser Eruption Prediction Sign: Park Rangers are constantly monitoring the Old Faithful and other surrounding geysers. Predicted eruption times are prominently posted.

  • Yellowstone Forever Bookstore: Books, gifts, and souvenirs.

  • Theater: Orientation and informational films are frequently shown.


Ranger Station & Backcountry Office: This is the location to obtain permits for backcountry overnight stays, fee payment, and obtain information specific to this area.


Medical Clinic: Open seasonally. (307-545-7325)


Yellowstone General Store: The store offers a variety of items including gifts, souvenirs, apparel, jewelry, outdoor supplies, books, groceries, and more.


Service Stations: There are two stations located at the east and west sections of the area, offering unleaded and diesel #2 fuels, and propane canister exchange. Firewood. Each station has a small convenience store.

Old Faithful and the Old Faithful Inn was mentioned in the following articles:
Best Places to Go and Things to do with Kids in Each of Yellowstone's 14 Road Sections"
"Why is Yellowstone’s Most Famous Geyser Called Old Faithful?"

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