Pack string, cowboy, Jackson Hole
A pack string high in the mountains of the Greater Yellowstone

Pack Trips into Greater Yellowstone's Back-Country

Pack Trip, horses crossing slough Creek, Yellowstone National Park
A pack trip coming out of the Absaroka Mountains crossing Slough Creek in Yellowstone National Park.

A pack trip into Yellowstone’s backcountry will enable you to explore the wildest parts of the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem and is an experience you will remember to the end of your days. The best way to experience the full majesty of Yellowstone Country is by traveling on horseback with pack animals to set up camps in the remote heart of the wilderness. More often than not 75% of your positive experience will be of the character that guides you there, Yellowstone cowboys are known for their mountains skills, colorful personalities, knowledge of natural history, human history, and ability too tell a memorable tall tale.

A Yellowstone pack trip may take you over spectacular passes of between 11,000 and 12,000 feet and through pristine mountain valleys with little human presence. Several of America’s mighty rivers of have their beginnings as tiny springs in Yellowstone’s high country. Each valley has its own distinct character with meadows of lupine in one and craggy cliffs in another. Pack trip adventures provide an opportunity to experience the glorious, untamed landscape that is unchanged since the early explorers found it.

When you hire a seasoned and professional packer and his wranglers you usually get accomplished fishing guides as well, the end result is an amazing wilderness experience and unparalleled backcountry fishing. Pack outfitters place an emphasis on the entire experience: taking in the scenery, viewing wildlife, learning new techniques and catching fish.

Wild Yellowstone cutthroat, rainbows, cutbows, browns, brookies and lake trout all reside within the vast watersheds of the park. Most back country trout average from 12"-20" with larger fish found in certain areas. Dry fly fishing with large attractors and hopper patterns is the usual approach during the summer months. Sight-fishing with dry flies for wild, robust trout is what makes this fishing so special.

Traveling in the Yellowstone Backcountry on horseback is a traditional and exciting way to see the park. Only horses, burros, mules, ponies, and llamas may be used as pack animals. Because horses and mules are large animals with big appetites, they have the potential for causing a noticeable impact on the backcountry.

Pack string on pack trip coming out of Heart Lake in Yellowstone National Park
Pack string on pack trip coming out of Heart Lake in Yellowstone National Park

Pack animals selected for a trip in Yellowstone should be well trained, compatible with each other and accustomed to the restraining techniques you plan to use whether they be electric fences, hobbles or pickets. Highlines can be used, but they must be set up and moved often enough so that trees and underlying areas are not damaged. Horses may not be kept overnight at any trailheads or in any of the roadside campgrounds. To camp overnight in the park, you must have a Backcountry Use Permit and use a backcountry campsite that allows horses or stock. None of the sites have corrals, or hitching rails, and tying stock to trees for long periods is not permissible. If you wish to take a daytime ride, call the Backcountry Office for a Day Use Stock Permit.

Campsites and trails may be closed to stock use in the spring and early summer due to wet conditions. Generally, overnight stock use isn't permitted before 01 July. Contact the nearest ranger station or the Backcountry Office for current trail conditions and/or restrictions.

What better way to enjoy the wilds of Yellowstone than to saddle up and head into the mountainous terrain of the peaks and valleys of Yellowstone? Most horses have a graceful and gentle aura, representing the freedom to the wild rugged Absaroka, Gallatin, or Bitterroot mountains of Yellowstone National Park.

Montana Pack Trip Outfitters

Wilderness Pack Trips(Montana/Yellowstone) As experienced backcountry outfitters, Wilderness Pack Trips will take you into special areas, where very few people have ever been. Discovering new areas and sharing them exclusively with our guests is what we are passionate about. Wilderness Pack Trips backcountry trips are provided by the owners, Mike and Erin Thompson. The Thompson’s guide all of the Backcountry trips, insuring that their guests will have a knowledgeable, experienced licensed guide. Mike has traveled over 800 miles horseback each season (15) exclusively in Yellowstone National Park. (That’s over 12,000 miles!)

Wyoming Pack Trip Outfitters
Pack Trip, Jackson Hole, Wyoming
Packtrip, Jackson Hole, Wyoming

Hidden Basin Outfitters (Jackson Hole WY) Jackson Hole is home to some of the finest big game hunting on earth, where hunters have the opportunity to pursue animals in their natural habitat. Our experienced and fully-licensed guides will lead you and your party in search of cow elk, bull elk, moose, sheep, mule deer, antelope, and bear. For Big Game Hunters Looking for a True Wyoming Experience!

Mill Iron Ranch • (Jackson Hole WY) Mill Iron Ranch has been a Wheeldon family tradition for three generations. We carry on the old cowboy traditions around here, showing the Jackson visitors how to ride, fish, hunt and camp.

Wind River Trophy Hunts • (Pinedale WY) We provide hunters with the unique experience of hunting in the remote backcountry that contains one of the healthiest elk populations in the state of Wyoming. For hunters looking for the ultimate hunting experience - whether it be elk, moose, sheep, antelope, or mountain lions - Wind River Trophy Hunts is your best bet!

Jenkin's Hunting Camp • (Star Valley WY) Larry Jenkins' Hunting Camp has provided Big Game Hunting since the 1970s. His hunting camp is a family run operation where Larry, his wife Shirley, and their two sons and daughter are all part of your hunting experience. Larry and his family have owned and operated their camp for over 30 years. By specializing in pleasing the individual, Larry can gear the hunt to your own abilities and desires. The saddle horses are all mountain trained and gentle enough to carry you all day in safety. However, Larry prefers to ride as little as possible and still get your game. Your not in the saddle all day long. You can expect an average of 80% success rate on buck mule deer. Larry's hunter success on bull elk ranges from 80 to 100% average each year.Many of these bulls are trophys.

Idaho Pack Trip Outfitters

Jake's Horses • (Island Park) All day or by the hour trail rides, alpine lake fishing, hunting, pack trips & guide service. We are located in Island Park, Idaho.

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