Cloud Peak Wilderness

In 1984, Congress passed the Wyoming Wilderness Act, which designated the Cloud Peak Wilderness in the Bighorn National Forest. Long recognized as having some of the most majestic alpine scenery in America, this region was managed as the Cloud Peak Primitive Area as far back as 1932. For 27 miles along the spine of the Bighorn Mountain Range, the 189,039 acre Cloud Peak Wilderness preserves many sharp summits and towering sheer rock faces standing above glacier-carved, U-shaped valleys.

Named for the tallest mountain in the Bighorn National Forest - Cloud Peak at 13,167 feet - the area is blanketed in snow for a large part of the year. Most of the higher ground doesn't show bare ground until July. On the east side of Cloud Peak itself, a deeply inset cirque holds the last remaining glacier in this range.

Several hundred beautiful lakes cover the landscape and drain into miles of streams. The area is characterized by an attractive mix of pine and spruce opened by meadows and wetlands.

Although rugged in appearance, the Bighorns are actually more gentle than other mountains in Wyoming. The area is visited each year by thousands of backpackers who hike along more than 100 miles of trails.

Photograph taken in 1923 showing John W. Spencer with his camera near Diamond LakePhotograph taken in 2013 showing photographer Dave Stotzel and his camera near Diamond lakeIn Wilderness natural processes are the primary influences and human activities are limited. Here we experience wild places without disturbing or destroying the action of these natural processes. These two identical photos (to the left) were taken near Diamond Lake one in 1923 and one in 2013. Please follow the special regulations and always use Leave No Trace techniques to help keep this area wild, clean, and pristine.

At a Glance

Permit Info: Important: Anyone entering the Cloud Peak Wilderness is required to complete and submit a registration form.
Restrictions: Wilderness Regulations apply
Closest Towns: Buffalo, Wyoming; Greybull, Wyoming; Sheridan, Wyoming
Operated By: Forest Service

General Information

General Notes:

Topo maps

Forest Service Topography Maps: These maps overlay Forest Service assets, such as roads, trails, and campgrounds, on USGS's topographic maps. They are available for download by quadrangle.

Buy maps online

The visitor map provides information about services, campgrounds, picnic areas, and other attractions located in the Bighorn National Forest.  It also includes information about travel restrictions, amenities at our facilities, and will help you locate some of the forest’s points of interest.

You can purchase a Bighorn National Forest visitor map for $14 from the USGS Store, which offers secure, online ordering ($5 service charge applies), along with ordering by phone, mail, or fax.

Go to for additional maps and information about Wilderness.


Day Hiking


Horse Riding

Related Information

Recreation Areas

Recreation Activities



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