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Bechler Llama Traverse

Highlights

  •   Guides Choice llama trek in Yellowstone
  •   Largest backcountry geyser
  •   Shoshone Geyser Basin & Shoshone Lake
  •   Stunning Bechler River Canyon
  •   Multiple, amazing waterfalls
  •   Abundant wildlife habitat
  •   Soak in hot springs
  •   Hike in comfort with a light pack
  •   Top-notch service and wonderful llamas!


Description

You're not like to experience a trek as special and enchanting as this traverse of the stunning Bechler River Valley in Yellowstone National Park! This is our most popular Yellowstone llama trek because it so amply provides the opportunity to experience the iconic features of Yellowstone in the backcountry, away from the crowded highways and boardwalks. Having it all to ourselves, we'll check out backcountry geysers, pristine rivers and streams, mountain lakes, hot springs (yes, we can soak in them!), thundering waterfalls, and the picturesque meadow systems of Yellowstone, all in the wilderness.

The Bechler Llama Traverse is arguably the crown jewel of Yellowstone's backcountry hiking because it truly has it all. Give us a call at 1-800-715-HIKE (4453) for more information or to reserve your spot.

Permits
Due to Yellowstone's permit system, which issues backcountry hiking and camping permits on March 1st each year, it's beneficial to register before February 28th of the year you'd like to hike with us. Give us a call at 1-800-715-HIKE (4453) to learn more!

Wildland Llamas
This trip is operated by Wildland Llamas, an authorized stock outfitter in Yellowstone National Park. Wildland Llamas is a separate, partner company of WIldland Trekking with partially shared ownership, guide teams, and infrastructure.

We're Here to Help!
 
Multi-day Llama Trek
Difficulty:
Solitude:
Origin: Jackson, WY*
5 or 6 days
32+mi / 51+km
5 Days: $1995
6 Days: $2195

† Taxes & Fees

* Travel Logistics

  See Trip Dates


Trip Dates

Click on a date to register.
You can also click here to request new dates or book through customer service.
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We can often customize dates for groups at no extra cost!
800-715-HIKE (4453)

Trip Itinerary

Day 1
  • Shuttle to Trailhead: 2.5 hours
  • Hiking Distance: 10 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 1000 feet
  • Elevation Loss: 400 feet
This Yellowstone llama trek starts with pick up from your hotel, after which we'll depart for the trailhead to get an early start. It’s a beautiful 2.5 -hour drive to our trailhead as we make our way by Teton National Park and through the South Entrance. Once we reach out trailhead, we’ll conduct a llama orientation, get them loaded and hit the trail.

Our trip begins with a bang as we arrive at the largest backcountry geyser in the park: Lonestar Geyser. If we’re lucky we’ll see its 40-foot eruption of scalding water. From Lonestar we follow the Firehole River, cross the Continental Divide, and get views of Shoshone Lake, one of the largest wilderness lakes in in the lower 48 states and the backdrop for the Shoshone Geyser Basin. The basin contains an abundance of geysers: there are bubbling pools, frothing potholes, bizarrely shaped mounds spewing fountain-like streams into the air and grumbling crevasses. After our picnic lunch, we will continue on and climb to the high point of the trip, a plateau of lush meadows and thick forests. We will drop into Bechler Canyon, reaching our destination for the night. After a getting situated, our guide will prepare our first backcountry dinner of the trip. After enjoying the peacefulness of the area, we will settle in for a much needed night of rest!
Day 2
  • Hiking Distance: 4 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 200 feet
  • Elevation Loss: 200 feet
We will have a leisurely morning, enjoying the cool, crisp air while our guide prepares coffee / tea and breakfast. We will discuss the plan for the day, which includes moving camp and continuing through the Bechler Canyon. Packing up our llamas, we have a short hike to our destination and one of the highlights of our tour, backcountry hot springs! After making camp near the river we’ll explore the valley’s first remarkable feature: "Mr. Bubbles," a series of hot springs fit for royalty. Bring your bathing suit because we’ll take some time to lounge in the hot water while enjoying the peaceful scenery of Bechler Canyon. We will settle in to this campsite where we will stay for 2 nights. After another delicious backcountry dinner, enjoying the campfire (weather permitting), we will settle in for a good nights rest!
Day 3
  • Hiking Distance: 4 miles
  • Elevation Gain/Loss: 100 feet
Today is a layover day to soak up the beauty of this amazing canyon, and to soak in the Mr Bubbles hot springs some more. We'll enjoy a hearty breakfast, a wonderful lunch, some great hiking and soaking, and finally a feast of a dinner around a roaring campfire. You'll have time to enjoy a good book, relax, do some exploring on your own, or possibly some fishing if that's your thing.
Day 4
  • Hiking Distance: 5.6 miles
  • Elevation Gain: minimal
  • Elevation Loss: 700 feet
Hiking further down canyon we’ll do two longer river crossings which could be as deep as three feet with relatively swift water - your guide will support the group at these crossings. Our exciting fords across the river will be rewarded with two amazing waterfall: Colonnade Falls, a two-part waterfall (the second of which is the highest on this trip), and Iris Falls. We'll set up camp and enjoy a tasty dinner before settling in for some much deserved sleep.
Day 5
  • Hiking Distance: 6.5 miles
  • Elevation Gain/Loss: minimal
  • Shuttle to Jackson Hole: 2.5 hours
After a final, nearly seven-mile hike through meadows and beautiful stands of lodgepole pine we’ll arrive at the Bechler Ranger Station, which marks the end of our llama trek. We'll shuttle back to Jackson Hole and say our good-byes.



Dunanda Falls 6-Day Variation:

We can add an extra day to this trip which allows us to visit Dunanda Falls, a stunning waterfall with hot springs close by. It makes day 4 a bit longer and adds a 6th day to the itinerary, which also increases the cost. Feel free to ask us about this variation if it interests you.



Please Note: We always do everything in our power to follow the set itinerary, however it can change occasionally based on temporary park restrictions, campsite availability, weather, road closures, guest ability/injury, and natural events like fires and flooding.

Trip Details

What's Included

  • Pack llamas to transport the majority of gear and food
  • One or more professional, knowledgeable, certified Yellowstone National Park hiking guides
  • Top-of-the-line tent, sleeping pad, sleeping bag, and technical backpack
  • Use of trekking poles
  • All meals are included from breakfast the first day through lunch on the last day
  • Roundtrip transportation from Jackson to the trailhead and back
  • Bear safety equipment including bear spray cannisters and food-hanging gear
  • Emergency equipment including a company-issued first-aid kit and satellite phone
  • You will receive a Lifetime Hiking Membership entitling you, your spouse and your kids to a lifetime discount of 10% off any Wildland Trekking hiking trip after your first one!

What's Not Included

  • Clothes, raingear, and footwear (Oboz hiking shoes and boots recommended)
  • Sunscreen, toiletries and personal items
  • Waterbottles and a headlamp or flashlight
  • Guide gratuity (industry recommendation is 10-15% of trip cost)
See the Packing List page for more information.


Meals: What To Expect

All of our hiking and backpacking tours include a diversity of tasty meals packed full of critical carbohydrates, proteins and fats. We carry foods that travel well in the backcountry – rice, pastas, lentils, beans, couscous, packaged meats, nuts, breads, oatmeal, granola, and more.

For optimal taste and energy, we supplement all our meals with spices, herbs, oils, cheeses, butter, sugar, and fruits and vegetables (fresh and dried). In addition, we provide you with with an assortment of trail mix, snacks, and dried fruits to eat at your own discretion.

We regularly accommodate vegan, vegetarian, kosher and non-gluten diets and will make adjustments for food allergies. These and other special dietary requests may require an additional fee.


Gear We Provide

We provide all group gear which includes the following:
  • Deuter or Osprey backpacks
  • Sierra Designs or Mountain Hardware tents
  • Sierra Designs sleeping bags
  • Thermarest or Big Agnes sleeping pads
  • Leki trekking poles
  • Mountain Safety Research cooking stoves
  • Mountain Safety Research cookware
  • Bear spray cannisters and food-hanging gear
  • Company-issued first-aid kit
  • Satellite phone


What Gear To Bring

We ask that you supply a couple of gear items on your hiking tour. These items are two 1-liter waterbottles per person, either a headlamp or flashlight per person, and a lightweight waterproof stuff sac for your clothes and belongings. Basic items like sunscreen, bug repellent (where and when applicable), lip balm, and toiletries are also important. All of these items are available online at Wildland Trekking Outfitters.


What Clothes to Bring

Please refer to the trip packet for a recommended clothing list (we email you a detailed trip packet when you inquire and when you register). All trips require a sturdy pair of hiking shoes or hiking boots, rain gear, and non-cotton clothing layers. A minimum of three pairs of wool or synthetic hiking socks are also required. All of these items are available online at Wildland Trekking Outfitters.

NOTE: See the Packing Lists page for more detailed information on what clothes and gear to bring on your hiking tour. The trip packet you receive when you contact us will have the most accurate clothing and gear list for the tour you're interested in.

Trip Logistics

Where Do We Meet?

You'll meet your hiking guide and group at a predetermined hotel in Jackson, Wyoming for an orientation meeting at 5:00 PM the evening before the trip begins. The next morning we'll pick you up at your hotel for transport to the trailhead. Your guide will be in contact approximately 10 days before your trip to coordinate the rendezvous and answer any last minute questions you have.

Check out our Travel Resources page for information on flights, shuttles, discounted lodging and more.

Safety Considerations

Your safety is our top priority. Our hiking tours are led by professional Wyoming hiking guides, all of whom are wilderness-certified first responders or EMT's, each with years of guiding and wilderness experience. We've developed comprehensive risk management protocols that our guides adhere to in case of an emergency, and most tours carry a satellite phone. If you have any further questions about safety, please contact us at 1-800-715-HIKE (4453) for more information.


Guides

Your tour will be led by a trained, experienced professional with a solid guiding background, years of personal wilderness and hiking experience, training in llama-handling, medical certifications, and a passion for leading people into breathtaking landscapes. Check out our Meet Our Team page for staff bios.


Group Size

The standard ratio of guests to guides on llama trips is 1 guide for 1-4 guests; 2 guides for 5-8 guests; and 3 guides for 9-10 guests. If you have more questions about group size, please give us a call at 800-715-HIKE (4453) and we'll answer all your questions.


Weather Around Yellowstone

Being a Northern mountain environment, the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem is prone to sudden temperature and weather shifts. This is an exciting aspect of being in Wyoming's mountains. On trips in June, snow is a slight possibility, and the rest of the summer you're likely to get rained on at least once during your trip. To be fully prepared, please follow the recommended clothing list closely (this list comes as part of your trip packet when you register). See below for average summer temperatures around Yellowstone:
     
Average Temperatures (Fahrenheit)
     
 
Month
High
Low
 
June
70°
42°
 
July
80°
47°
 
August
78°
45°
 
September
68°
37°

Camping on Llama Hiking Trips

backpacking tent

Backcountry Sleeping

Tent Camping

Sleeping on llama treks is in premier 1-person, 2-person or 4-person backcountry tents. Solo travelers, and anyone else who requests it, are issued single tents. Top-of-the-line self-inflating sleeping pads and sleeping bags (professionally laundered after every trip) are also provided.

backpacking meals

Backcountry Cuisine

Fresh & Delicious

Meals from breakfast Day 1 through lunch the last day are fully included and prepared by your trekking guide. We never use dehydrated backpacking meals, instead serving freshly prepared, delicious backcountry cuisine made with a variety of common and specialty ingredients that travel well in the wilderness.

backpacking campsites

Amazing Campsites

In the Action

Of course campsites vary tremendously by destination, trip and even by the individual day of a trip. However, you can expect to camp in beautiful areas that put you right in the action to make the most of your llama trekking adventure. We carefully design our itineraries with campsites in mind.

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