Madison River, Yellowstone National Park

The Madison River is a headwater tributary of the Missouri River, approximately 183 miles (295 km) long, in Wyoming and Montana. Its confluence with the Jefferson and Gallatin rivers near Three Forks, Montana forms the Missouri River.
The Madison rises in Park County in northwestern Wyoming at the confluence of the Firehole and Gibbon rivers, a location known as Madison Junction in Yellowstone National Park. It flows west then north through the mountains of southwestern Montana to join the Jefferson and Gallatin rivers at Three Forks. The Missouri River Headwaters State Park is located on the Madison at Three Forks. In its upper reaches in Gallatin County, Montana, the Hebgen Dam forms Hebgen Lake. In its middle reaches in Madison County, Montana, the Madison Dam forms Ennis Lake and provides hydroelectric power. In 1959, the 1959 Hebgen Lake earthquake formed Quake Lake just downstream from Hebgen Dam. Downstream from Ennis, the Madison flows through Bear Trap Canyon, known for its class IV-V whitewater. The Bear Trap Canyon section is part of the Lee Metcalf Wilderness area.
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Madison River Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
45 reviews
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4.2
TripAdvisor
  • Woke up in the morning to bison in the campground. Walked down to the river after breakfast. That night a small herd of bison were moving past the campgrounds.  more »
  • The valley is really beautiful. It's just a stream, and the madison river is very peaceful and wonderful. Bison is a refuge for deer.
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  • Cool place when you know the history behind it, head waters and the naming of nearby rivers. Gives you a real sense of history and significance standing on the banks and watching it roll by.
  • We love summers on the river, hiking trails, and floating. It's a great time for all and dog friendly.
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