GRANITE PEAK PUBLICATIONS: Accompanying travelers to the national park since 2002

Watching Old Faithful Geyser

Old Faithful 2013

Old Faithful Geyser from Observation Point (2013)

In its most glorious eruptions, Old Faithful may reach 180 feet (55 meters) high.

In winter (below, in a photo by Janet Chapple), there are far fewer visitors observing the world’s most famous geyser.


At Old Faithful Village you’ll find it easy to catch an eruption. Predictions are posted during summer and winter daylight hours in the Old Faithful Visitor Education Center. Lots of benches on Old Faithful’s geyserite mound let you wait in comfort, or you can watch from the second floor balcony of Old Faithful Inn.

Old Faithful in winter

Old Faithful Geyser (Winter 2006)

How often does Old Faithful erupt? Old Faithful’s average interval has recently been around 92 minutes, but the range is from 55 to 118 minutes. The interval has lengthened from the 60 to 65 minutes recorded by early visitor Nathaniel Langford in 1870.

Old Faithful may not last forever. Earthquakes as far away as central Idaho have influenced its intervals in the past and could change the geyser drastically in the future. Also, it is gradually building up deposits of the mineral silica within its throat, which could one day seal it off completely.

CREDITS: The summertime photo was taken by Beth Chapple, the view in winter by Janet Chapple.

IN YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK: Take a look at the live-streaming webcam focused on Old Faithful Geyser at Old Faithful Geyser Live! Check their Webcam FAQ if you have trouble accessing it.

IN THE GUIDEBOOK: Is this geyser’s power less than it used to be? See page 79 of Yellowstone Treasures, fifth edition, for the answer.

Updated August 3, 2017. Copyright Janet Chapple. All Rights Reserved.