Phelps Lake

Grand Teton National Park

An easy lakeside trail run loaded with mountain views and wildlife.

Trail Running Easy

Distance
11 km
Ascent
192 m
Descent
192 m
Low Point
2 km
High Point
2.1 km
Gradient
VIEW ON MAP
Phelps Lake Map

Description

Resting at the mouth of Death Canyon, this run offers an easy, yet beautiful trail run around one of the Teton's most coveted glacial lakes. Roughly 6.5 miles in length, this loop offers stunning views of Albright Peak and Prospectors Mountain as it ventures through stands of spruce, fir and lodgepole pine. As with the other lakeside trails in the Tetons, the run is spectacular in the early morning hours.

The trailhead sits adjacent to the LSR Preserve Visitor Center, separated only by small sagebrush flat. Shortly after, keep right onto the Woodland Trail to run the loop counter-clockwise, the preferred direction to enjoy the best views. As you approach the lake, keep right on Phelps Lake Trail to continue around eastern shore of the lake.

For those looking for a shorter run, you could take a left and return to the trailhead to the trailhead on the Lake Creek Trail.

While the approach to the lake requires some gradual climbing, the loop is relatively flat. At it's northernmost point, consider taking a short detour onto the Death Canyon Trail, keeping right at the junction. Just a few minutes up the trail, you'll reach a high point where you'll be rewarded with a commanding view of the entire lake from above.

According to this local resource, "While the entire loop around Phelps Lake features a variety of wildflowers, the west side of the lake will have far more as the season progresses. Depending on your timing, hikers may see fireweed, showy goldeneye, western coneflower, asters, Columbia monkshood, common yarrow and helianthella, among many other varieties." Runners can also expect an array of wildlife, including bears, moose, squirrel, coyote, and even osprey.

Sources: http://www.tetonhikingtrails.com/phelps-lake-loop.htm https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PhelpsLake(Wyoming)

Difficulty

Easy

Low Exposure

1 out of 4

The path is on completely flat land and potential injury is limited to falling over.

Remoteness

2 out of 4

Away from help but easily accessed.

Best time to visit

April, May, June, July, August, September, October

Similar routes nearby

Guidebooks in this area