Alta, WY 83414, USA

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  • Devin Ramdutt   Dec 14, 2017

    Quick walk out to Phelps lake. Didn't make it into Death Canyon, but looking into the canyon, it suspect the hiking in there would have been amazing. Saw plenty of deer, some moose and a hedgehog even though it was getting late in the season (November) and the great thing was that the deer antler were huge! If there is snow on the ground or a lot of rain, you will definitely need a 4WD vehicle with some clearance to make it to the trailhead.

  • Steve Dempsey   Jun 27, 2022

    The start of the trail to backpack in the Backcountry we hiked a mountain and had a great time.

  • lauren fuller   Oct 01, 2019

    It's nature... what's not to love? People, the people who leave their trash, mark up the trees, take things, harass wildlife, and make it so the park isn't enjoyable for others. I love this place with my whole heart and soul. Let's keep it beautiful for everyone. The most beautiful trail is called Death Canyon. And I don't know why!

  • WeSee Here   Jul 06, 2018

    Great hike for groups, youth, and people looking for some amazing views. The Road up the the Death Canyon trailhead is paved half way, the rest of the road is a very bumpy, pot holed, dirt road. I drove it with my Ford Explorer and had no problem getting to the trailhead. I did not need to put it in 4 Wheel drive. But if the road was super muddy or if there was snow on a road you would definitely want it. I did see cars (non-high clearance vehicles) at the trailhead. If you are gutsy and good dodging the biggest ruts and bumps you can get there in a car. The first mile of the trail wanders through the forest providing views of...the forest. But at the mile 1 point you come to Phelps Lake Overlook, which has a stunning view of the lake, especially if you catch it on a day so calm and clear as I did. Phelps lake was a mirror of the sky surrounded by a forest of pine. So stunning. From this overlook I hiked another .7 miles down the large switchback to the Phelps Lake/Death Canyon fork. Look to your right here and you will see a good little waterfall. I went straight and headed into Death Canyon. The trail is good and well maintained, but there was one section that was inundated with water. Not sure if this occurs year round or just when run off is happening. There were plenty of rocks to step on to avoid getting my boots wet. I went up the canyon 2.2 miles to the Patrol Cabin. The elevation gain was about 2,000 vertical feet (a good hearty ascent). The river was gushing and pouring down the canyon. The cliffs rose above me like mountainous cathedrals. I had to stop multiple times just to take it all in and look back down the canyon to see the view of Phelps lake. Beautiful. Once I got up to higher basin the trail leaved off and meandered passed the then lazy river, meadows, and rock fields (that were filled with Marmots, some of which were carrying around their newborns!) The patrol cabin was a great place to rest and turn around to head back down. There are two trails that continue on past the Patrol Cabin. Each goes on and on for miles. I have not hiked them….yet. This is bear country. Know the rules and be careful. A couple hikers passed me on their way down warning me of a black bear that was just past the Patrol Cabin. I didn’t see that one, but the warning did put me on alert. I saw another black bear later on my hike down by Phelps Lake. After hiking back down Death Canyon I took the Phelps Lake fork to go down to the lake. About a quarter of the way around the lake on the north side is a large boulder that juts out into the lake. It is about a half mile from the fork in the trail. The rock makes for a perfect “cliff” jumping spot into the freezing cold lake. No kidding, I took me a few tries before my body was able to breath again after jumping in. The drop is a fun heart pumping 20 feet. If rock jumping is not your thing, then it also provides a great view across the lake up into Death Canyon. Rather than hiking backup to Phelps Lake Overlook and over to my car, I continued down around the north side of the lake and over to the Laurance S. Rockefeller Preserve Center, where I was picked up and taken back to my car. This was approximately another 2.6 miles. Making my hike a total 9.2 miles. The hike took me about 8 hours. I found this to be a very memorable hike, with fantastic views, a good amount of physical challenge, and one I would happily do again. In fact I would recommend this canyon over Cascade Canyon if you are up for the steeper elevation gain. Enjoy!

  • Suwei Wu   Sep 01, 2020

    Did a quick hike from Death Canyon Trailhead to Phelp's Lake and back. Think it was only 2 miles or less roundtrip. The trailhead was packed with at least a hundred cars. We arrived there fairly late as we had come from central WY so lots of folks were on their way out and we snagged a spot pretty close to the start of the trail. The hike was beautiful and easy. The biggest hurdle was waiting for a bear to finish eating berries above the trail, poop on the trail and then cross down to eat more berries - this was about a 15 min or so wait. And then further down the trail almost to the lake we saw another bear. Made lots of noise the whole way down and back up - kept the kiddo between my husband and self. Phelp's lake too was beautiful. Jumped in and had a nice cool down. Sandy beach, logs next to the water to sit on, trees for shade, very few people - what more could you ask for?

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