2 Free Issues and 3 Free Gifts!
Full Name:
Address 1:
Address 2:
Zip Code:
Email: (required)
If I like it and decide to continue, I'll pay just $12.00, and receive a full one-year subscription (9 issues in all), a 73% savings off the newsstand price! If for any reason I decide not to continue, I'll write "cancel" on the invoice and owe nothing.
Your subscription includes 3 FREE downloadable booklets.
Or click here to pay now and get 2 extra issues
Offer valid in US only.

Also on

Enter Zip Code

Backpacker Magazine – August 2000

Grand Teton's High Adventure Trail

Some people head to Wyoming to summit the Tetons. But outdoor legend Paul Petzoldt had a better idea: Create a route for foot travelers along the spine of the great range.

by: Mike Lanza

PAGE 1 2

Expedition Planner
Paul Petzoldt's High Adventure Trail

The route: Petzoldt's High Adventure Trail traverses the Teton Range for 67.5 miles, linking existing trails and involving short sections of sometimes-difficult cross-country travel. It runs from WY 22 west of Jackson north to the Lake of the Woods on Reclamation Road (also known as Ashton-Flagg Ranch Road), a seasonal gravel road linking Ashton, Idaho, with the John D. Rockefeller Memorial Parkway north of Grand Teton National Park. Numerous side trails access Petzoldt's route from the east and west sides of the range.

Hiking northbound, begin on the Phillips Pass Trail on Teton Pass Road (WY 22), a mile east of Teton Pass. Hike about 4 miles to Phillips Pass and the Teton Crest Trail, which winds northward about 18 miles to Hurricane Pass. From the pass, the Petzoldt route, swings west, descending an unofficial but obvious trail through several switchbacks down the headwall of the valley of Roaring Creek. Less than a quarter-mile below Hurricane Pass, turn northward and walk cross-country toward Table Mountain. In a mile, the talus becomes steeper on Table's south slope; a vegetated gully on the left side of that slope provides the easiest route up. On the more gentle shoulder of Table Mountain, intersect Table Mountain Trail No. 24 and follow it to the summit.

Double back, descending Table Mountain Trail about 5 miles into the North Fork of Teton Creek Canyon. Turn north onto Beard's Wheatfield Trail No. 23, following it 4.5 miles to South Leigh Trail No. 21. Turn east and hike about 4 miles to Granite Basin Lakes; there, pick up another section of the Teton Crest Trail (detached from the trail of the same name in the national park). The Teton Crest Trail snakes another 26 miles northward through Dead Horse Pass, Nord Pass, Conant Pass, and Jackass Pass, although sections are rough and difficult to follow, and there is a gap of less than 2 miles between Red Creek and Conant Pass where open terrain allows easy cross-country hiking and route-finding.

The Teton Crest Trail ends at a junction with the South Boone Trail No. 3 and Middle Boone Trail No. 29. Petzoldt's route takes the Middle Boone for another mile, to just beyond a crossing of a tributary of South Boone Creek, then cuts cross-country northward about 3 miles to the Lake of the Woods on Reclamation Road. If you'd rather avoid the poorly maintained Middle Boone Trail and bushwhacking, hike west on the more scenic and better-maintained South Boone Trail to the dirt Jackass Road, which is off Reclamation Road just east of Ashton.

Season: July to September.

Permits: Required within Grand Teton National Park. One-third of backcountry permits for any given night are available for advance reservations ($15); the rest are first come, first served (free). But only about 7 miles of Petzoldt's route are actually within the park. It's possible to hike the route camping only in the Targhee National Forest, though Death Canyon Shelf may be the most scenic campsite.

Guides: I used the Grand Teton National Park map (Earthwalk Press, 800-828-6277; $7.95), though you could also re-create the High Adventure Trail using the Trails Illustrated map (#202) of the same name (800-962-1643;; $9.95).

Contact: Targhee National Forest (Jedediah Smith Wilderness), Ashton Ranger District, (208) 652-7442. Grand Teton National Park, (307) 739-3300.

PAGE 1 2

Subscribe to Backpacker magazine
Sign up for our free weekly e-newsletter
Address 1:
Address 2:
Email (req):

Reader Rating: -


johny martin
Feb 10, 2012

I cant find anymore info on this please help!!!!

johny martin
Apr 12, 2010

im also looking into this after i do the reg. crest trail this july.

mark nielsen
Oct 01, 2009

I would like to find detailed info to do the 67.5 mi high adventure trial hike next year, where can I find that?


Your rating:
Your Name:


My Profile Join Now

Most recent threads

Hiking on rocks
Posted On: Aug 28, 2014
Submitted By: GoBlueHiker
Finally going Backpacking!
Posted On: Aug 28, 2014
Submitted By: 92hatchattack
View all Gear
Find a retailer

Special sections - Expert handbooks for key trails, techniques and gear

Check out Montana in Warren Miller's Ticket to Ride
Warren Miller athletes charge hard and reflect on Big Sky country, their love for this space and the immense energy allotted to the people who reside in Montana.

Boost Your Apps
Add powerful tools and exclusive maps to your BACKPACKER apps through our partnership with Trimble Outdoors.

Carry the Best Maps
With BACKPACKER PRO Maps, get life-list destinations and local trips on adventure-ready waterproof myTopo paper.

FREE Rocky Mountain Trip Planner
Sign up for a free Rocky Mountain National Park trip planning kit from our sister site

Follow BackpackerMag on Twitter Follow Backpacker on Facebook
Get 2 FREE Trial Issues and 3 FREE GIFTS
Survival Skills 101 • Eat Better
The Best Trails in America
YES! Please send me my FREE trial issues of Backpacker
and my 3 FREE downloadable booklets.
Full Name:
Address 1:
Zip Code:
Address 2:
Email (required):
Free trial offer valid for US subscribers only. Canadian subscriptions | International subscriptions