The Grizzly Lake Trail is an awesome and fairly easy hike, but be prepared to get wet. May is pretty much the middle of the wet season in Yellowstone (if the snow is even thawed that is), so it was muddy and wet 100 yards into the trail. We hadn’t really expected it (or had hoped for the best), so Ross had to run back to the car early on to get better footwear.
The hike starts with a hill to the left and plains to the right (or should I say wetlands). Much of the trail itself was a sort of rudimentary stream, shallow and crystal clear with a pebble bottom. Because of this you spend most of the first part of the hike walking in mushy grass and avoiding bison dung. All along the trail were a single pair of bison prints, possible some lone male in search of greener pastures. Occasionally we would see wolf scat,wolf prints and at least one large blackbear print. The ground was also littered with obsidian, starting with a huge glimmering boulder of pure obsidian sticking out of the trail, later with an even larger one in the field, and from then on, obsidian shards riddle the trail and ground all the way to the lake.
After hiking about a mile or 2 in, we came to a creek, swollen and white, though not too deep or fast to cross. We were dedicated to continuing our hike so we found the most narrow part we could, about 50 yards south of the trail, and “jumped” across. Naturally being too wide to actually jump, we just ended up mostly soaked and were now apparently on an island with another larger creek still to cross. We walked back up the island towards the trail till we found a log and walked across that precariously, of course having take photos of our “daring” moment. From then on the hike was mostly up and down small hills, rocky and open with random small trees and signs of animals. We kept a good look out for bears, bison and wolves, both for photographic reasons and safety, but never ran into anything. After about 4 miles we decided to turn around just before reaching the first back country campground on this particular trail. It was a cool day and we had only drank part of one bottle of water but had not brought snacks (for bear reasons), only bear mace, water and a backpack. We hope to camp at one of the back country campgrounds before we leave the Yellowstone area.