Head into Death Canyon for spectacular views of Phelps Lake and the surrounding peaks. Starting from the Death Canyon Trailhead, hikers will climb to the Phelps Lake Overlook before dropping down to Phelps Lake then climb back up into Death Canyon. The trail winds through forests and up rocky slopes before reaching the patrol cabin in Death Canyon. From there, hikers have the option to continue into the canyon, split off to the Static Peak Divide trail, or head back to the trailhead. In spring and early summer, the trail is often covered with snow and can be dangerous without experience and the proper equipment. Check conditions at the Craig Thomas Discovery and Visitor Center or Jenny Lake Ranger Station before attempting the trail early in the season.
The Death Canyon to Static Peak Divide Junction Trail is a strenuous, 7.9 m/12.7 km RT out and back trail with 2,100ft of elevation gain.
Death Canyon Trailhead
Park at the Death Canyon Trailhead for access to the Death Canyon - Static Peak Divide Junction Trail. The Death Canyon Trailhead is located one mile down a rutted, dirt road. The road is not recommended for vehicles with low clearance. Exercise caution when driving down the Death Canyon Road and pull fully off of the road if parking on the shoulder.
Permits are required for those planning to stay overnight in the backcountry. Visit the backcountry page to learn about obtaining a permit.
Death Canyon is best accessed in summer after the snow melts, and in fall before the first snow arrives. Hikers should use caution when traveling over snow and not attempt Death Canyon unless they have previous snow experience and the proper equipment.
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The Death Canyon to Static Peak Divide Junction Trail is a strenuous long hike, 7.9 miles (12.7 km) roundtrip out and back trail with over 2,100 ft of elevation gain. The trail has numerous rocks and small boulders in the pathway.
Last updated: January 27, 2021