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Elevation Gain
750.00 ft (228.60 m)
Trail type
There-and-back
Distance
6.00 mi (9.66 km)
Warming hut
No
Please respect the outdoors and leave no trace. One tip how to dispose of waste properly: Pack out toilet paper and hygiene products. For more information, visit https://lnt.org/learn/7-principles

Yellowstone National Park has numerous historic backcountry cabins in remote areas of the park. The Dailey Creek Patrol Cabin was constructed in 1925 and served as an outpost for U.S. Army troops looking for poachers. The cabin is still in use by rangers and researchers today. Overlooked in the summer months by hikers heading for the Sky Rim Trail, the Dailey Creek Patrol Cabin makes the perfect snowshoe trip in Yellowstone’s frosty winter months.

Not far from the trailhead, cross the bridge over Dailey Creek. The trail winds along the south side of the creek and up and over small hills through light stands of trees. Wildlife tracks are abundant in the snow along the way. Take time to stop and identify the tracks. Watchful eyes can often tell where an elk brushed the snow away to access grass, or where along the creek a coyote likes to visit.

The view opens up to the east, revealing a wide open landscape with the impressive mountains of the Sky Rim Trail as the backdrop. To your north, the rocky sides of Crown Butte stand out in the snowy landscape. Crown Butte is made up of Huckleberry Ridge Tuff, an erosion resistant rock that formed when hot ash and pumice fused rapidly during a Yellowstone caldera eruption roughly 2.1 million years ago. Those familiar with Yellowstone may recall Mount Everts, also composed of Huckleberry Ridge Tuff in its uppermost layer of rock.

At the junction, the trail swings southeast, heading up a wide slope. The trail quickly approaches the treeline, running alongside it for less than a quarter mile. Eventually take a right into the forest, and the Dailey Creek Patrol Cabin comes immediately into view. Nestled full circle among a tall stand of trees, the cabin feels worlds away from people.

Bring a map of the area to help you with staying on course. The first few miles to the junction are ventured more than the rest of the trail to the patrol cabin (45.069858, -111.103892). In thick snow, the trail can be easily lost.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)

Winter

Congestion

Low

Parking Pass

None

Pros

Solitude. Abundant wildlife tracks.

Cons

None.

Pets allowed

No

Trailhead Elevation

6,750.00 ft (2,057.40 m)

Highest point

7,500.00 ft (2,286.00 m)

Address

US-191
Gallatin Gateway, MT 59730
United States

Features

Historically significant
Wildlife
Big Game Watching

Typically multi-day

No

Groomed trail

No

Snowmobiles allowed

No

Location

Field Guide

Nearby Lodging + Camping

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