Get off the road
There are 466 miles of pavement in Yellowstone. A common saying goes that less than 10 percent of visitors venture more than a mile away from it. In fact, a vast majority never even wander beyond the boardwalks surrounding the geysers. As a result, there are about 1,000 miles of trails that almost no one touches. The quietest backpacking route is the Thorofare Trail in the park’s remote, southeast corner. It skirts the shore of Yellowstone Lake, and meanders up the Yellowstone River to a literal no-man’s land where elk and grizzlies roam. Just getting into the park on the trail is a challenge: it’s a 30-mile hike on the Thorofare route to reach Yellowstone’s border from the outside.