Artist’s Point

Artist’s Point

The exquisite colors of yellow, ochre, sienna and red combine with green, blue, and turquoise envelope the slopes of the Grand Canyon, to create Artist’s Point, Yellowstone Park’s most scenic vista.

The views from this point are almost worth the entire effort of getting to Yellowstone National Park itself.  The light and shadows of the sun bring out different aspects of the canyon, making this a perfect location to spend time taking pictures, journaling, or simply meditating.

From here, you’ll see osprey circle above and nest in the canyon’s jagged peaks (spring visitors may even see baby chicks being fed in their nests.)  The canyon walls drop 700 feet below, making it a perfect spot to view the Lower Falls.  Views from Artist’s Point change with the season, and location of the sun, so be sure to bring your camera and allow at least 20 minutes for your visit.

How to Get There  – Visitors can reach can Artist’s Point by car, or by walking along the South Ridge Trail, a beautiful but often difficult walk.  The overlook is a five minute walk from the parking lot and is wheelchair accessible.  Although the parking area is large and fills quickly with tour buses and tour groups, you can still have a peaceful experience at Artist’s Point.  Hike downstream from the overlook, or stay at Canyon Lodge and arrive early in the morning or late in the afternoon to escape the tour bus crowds.

History of The Point – It was long believed that Thomas Moran first sketched Artist’s Point to use in creating famous painting of the canyon in 1872; however, it was later learned that it was not the site that he drew from.  That site was in fact, Arizona’s Grand Canyon and later became known as Moran Point.  Artist’s Point is thought to have received its name in 1883 by National Park Photographer F. Jay Haynes. The name appears in print for the first time in the 1890 park guidebook which he published.