Trailhead: 5 miles south of Norris Junction on the Norris-Madison road, just after Gibbon River Bridge
Distance: 2 miles (3 km)
Level of Difficulty: Difficult (don’t be fooled by the initial easy going)
This is a short but steep hike which is rated as difficult. Sometimes a walking stick left by previous visitors can be found at the trail registry box. If it is there, be certain to borrow it if you don’t already have one with you. After following the west bank of the Gibbon River for about 2/10ths of a mile, the trail begins to abruptly climb upward, climbing some 500 feet in about 7/10ths of a mile through a series of switchbacks. The trail affords a great view of Elk Park meadow and the wandering Gibbon River. Traversing mainly through lodgepole pine forest, the trail leads to Monument Geyser Basin, a small geyser basin which features mud pots, steam vents, sulphur pool, and some interestingly shaped cones. The basin is named after a slender, 8-foot tall cone which has the appearance of a monument. Experts are in disagreement as to whether or not the cone is a geyser. Nonetheless, this unusual cone currently emits steam through it’s narrow opening.
360 view of Monument Geyser Basin