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Paintbrush Canyon

Difficult
 4.8 (10)

A very steep, less-trafficked trail with a backcountry feel.


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Map Key

7.0

Miles

11.2

KM

Point to Point

10,675' 3,254 m

High

7,121' 2,170 m

Low

3,578' 1,091 m

Up

63' 19 m

Down

10%

Avg Grade (6°)

31%

Max Grade (17°)

Dogs Unknown

Features Birding · Lake · River/Creek · Views · Wildlife

Description

From the west edge of String Lake, Paintbrush Canyon trail branches off of the String Lake Trail and heads northwest into Paintbrush Canyon. Initially the trail contours Rockchuck Peak (11,145') and isn't too steep. Once it turns due west, however, and enters the canyon proper, the trail becomes much steeper.

Until ~4.4miles, the trail is ensconced in trees, so the views are fleeting. Be on the lookout for moose - they love this less-trafficked trail.

At the 4.4 mile point, Paintbrush Canyon trail intersects Holly Lake trail, which gives users the option to dip their feet in one of the beautiful high-alpine lakes Grand Teton has to offer. To continue on Paintbrush Canyon, stay left at this intersection. From here, the trail opens up to spectacular views of Mt. Woodring (11,518') to the north, The Jaw (11,327') and Mt. Saint John (11,379') to the south.

After the trail intersects with Holly Lake trail a second time, Paintbrush Canyon trail eases a bit. Don't get comfy, though... After ~.5mi, Paintbrush Canyon makes its final push up to Paintbrush Divide (10,720'). If you're attempting this trail prior to August, an ice axe may be necessary.

Push your way up this insanely steep pitch, and be sure to look back to see what you've accomplished. The views of the aforementioned mountains from here is incredible.

Contacts

Shared By:

Tom Robson

Trail Ratings

  4.8 from 10 votes

#7

in West

#364

Overall
  4.8 from 10 votes
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Trail Rankings

#7

in West

#16

in Wyoming

#364

Overall
66 Views Last Month
4,375 Since Dec 22, 2014
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Photos

Spirits are high as we head down Upper Paintbrush Canyon on Day 4 of the Teton Crest Trail.
Jan 12, 2017 near Alta, WY
Paintbrush Canyon is a lovely trail within Grand Teton National Park.
Mar 21, 2017 near Alta, WY
Hiking up Paintbrush Canyon.
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Image by the National Park Service (NPS).
Dec 23, 2014 near Moose W…, WY
Strenuous hike ....but we all made it in one day! One of our BEST family moments!
Oct 2, 2020 near Alta, WY
Paintbrush Canyon meadow and creek along the trail.
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Image by the National Park Service (NPS).
Dec 23, 2014 near Moose W…, WY

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Current Trail Conditions

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All Clear 57 days ago See History
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Check-Ins

Jul 26, 2020
Alex Kearney
Jul 17, 2020
Abby Gross
Began at Leigh Lake trailhead and hiked to Holly Lake via Paintbrush Trail. Touched snow, saw a moose and a marmot! 14.5mi
Jul 18, 2019
Jordan Card
Only went up about 2 miles then back to string lake loop
Nov 5, 2018
U K
Sep 12, 2018
Scott Street
Went 2 miles into canyon to first big lookout point 2mi
Sep 12, 2018
Stephy Yu
Sep 10, 2018
Davis Wert
Out and back to Holly Lake from String Lake 12.8mi
Aug 5, 2018
Evan Pennisi
7mi