Union Pass Road &
Union Pass Historical Site
Shoshone National Forest
An unimproved dirt road crosses Union Pass in the Wind River Range, connecting U.S. Route 287 near Dubois, Wyoming to U.S. Route 189 in Pinedale, Wyoming. The pass is located on the Continental Divide between the Gros Ventre mountains on the west and the Wind River Range on the east. The pass was historically used by Native Americans and early mountain men.
At the summit, the Union Pass Historical marker makes a nice stopping point, and a short hike through a lupine meadow takes you to a ring of markers describing the colorful history of this pass. Not far from that point, at the top of the Continental Divide, at Triple Divide Peak, there is a place where a raindrop of water might begin a journey traveling to one of three water drainages: the Missouri, the Columbia, or the Colorado, depending on which side of the mountain the drop of water might land.
Along this route you'll pass through scenic sagebrush valleys, conifer forests, aspen groves, and near mountain lakes. Wildlife include deer, pronghorn, moose, elk, and if you're lucky, sometimes grizzly. There are also abundant wildflowers blooming somewhere along this road depending on the elevation and month.
The content of this page was accurate on the date of its posting; it may have changed since that time. We recommend that you contact local authorities for current information. Our pages are only intended as a beginning to your journey.
About 60 miles one way, from Dubois to Pinedale.
- Union Pass Road, junction with Highway 26/287: 7,289 feet
- Junction with Spring Creek Road: 8,369 feet
- Union Pass: 9,266 feet
- Junction of Spring Creek Road with Highway 26/287: 7,731 feet
The road is typically open from July through September, between sunrise and sunset.
There are signs at the Pass monument. There are vault toilets at a few locations along the route; watch for established campgrounds.
From Dubois, Union Pass Road is accessible by traveling nine miles northwest of Dubois on US 26/287 to the marked Union Pass. Follow Union Pass road 15 miles to an interpretive site complete with a short nature walk that explains in part the surrounding area.
Map Coordinates (NAD83):
- Union Pass Road, junction with Highway 26/287: 43 35.968N; 109 47.158W
- Junction with Spring Creek Road: 43 33.959N; 109 48.930W
- Union Pass: 43 28.942N; 109 53.114W
- Junction of Spring Creek Road with Highway 26/287: 43 38.499N; 109 54.958W
Regulations and Precautions
- The road is partially paved, on the western slope, and part gravel the rest of the way. Due to the rough nature of certain portions of this road, a high clearance vehicle is recommended. A sedan can make it if the road is dry and you take it slow and carefully dodge the rough spots.
- Start early in the to make the most of this trip because portions are slow going, which is what makes it so enjoyable.