Crystal Butte Trail

Area Status: Open
This area is Open

Crystal Butte Trail

Difficulty:  Strenuous         Trail Use:  Heavy

Length:   1.6 miles from junction on Putt Putt to Woods Canyon Overlook

Elevation:   6644 ft at starting jct with Putt Putt, 7946 ft at overlook

Open to:  Hikers, Equestrian

Trail Highlights:

This trail climbs steeply right from the start up an open hillside offering sweeping views of Jackson and the Tetons.  It switchbacks several times until reaching the upper overlook.  From here the trail gets even steeper as it climbs up onto Crystal Butte where it eventually ends at an overlook of Woods Canyon.


  • There are no junctions off of this trail or loops.  It is an out and back trail.

Important Information

  • This trail was rerouted from its original location which was extremely eroded and gullied.  The old trail went straight up the butte and is now closed and much work has gone into rehabilitation.  Please use the new trail and stay off the old one so it can re-grow. 
  • Trail crosses a gully near the top that holds snow for quite a while. Take extra caution when crossing this area as it can be slick.
  • This trail goes into the Gros Ventre Wilderness at the top and is not open to Mountain Bikers.  Please respect this and do not bike on the trail as it was not designed for biking.
  • This trail is subject to seasonal winter closures.  It is closed from December 1st to April 30th.

At a Glance

Current Conditions: Call Tim Farris, Trail Supervisor @ 307-739-5414 for current trail conditions.
Restrictions: Trail is closed at top of the butte from December 1st to April 30th.

General Information





Nelson Dr. Access:  From Jackson, head towards the Elk Refuge on Broadway.  Take a right onto Nelson Drive at the jct with the Elk Refuge Road.  Head down Nelson Dr and take the first left.  Follow this up and take your next left onto a small dirt road up to the Nelson Drive Trailhead.  Take the trail up Putt Putt past the first junction (where the old trail used to be) and up until you see the new Crystal Butte Trail junction which is marked with a post.



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Day Hiking

Nature Viewing

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