If you are looking for a great three day backpacking trip in Grand Teton National Park, the Moose Basin Divide is highly recommended. There are a number of different routes, but I explored a route starting at the Glade Creek Trailhead along Grassy Lake Road per research of others opinions before the hike.
All backcountry camping requires a permit. Backcountry camping permits are issued on a first-come, first-served basis no more than one day before the start of your trip. It is easy to get a permit, just go into the Flagg Ranch and request one.
From the trailhead the trail heads south along the Snake River, starting out in a burned forest that is slowly coming back to life. The trail here is an easy flat walk with not much change in elevation. You will know that you are getting closer to Jackson Lake as the Snake River gets wider. This is an open area with plenty of sun and not very much drinker water, so be sure to bring the proper supplies to avoid burning and dehydration.
From Jackson Lake, it’s on to Berry Creek. The ford between the two is easy, less than a foot deep. After the ford follow the Webb Canyon Trail. It is easy to get off point here, so be sure to check your map. Webb Canyon is lined with a lot of dead trees and some tricky slopes to be cautions of as well. In the entire park you also run risk of being in bear country, so be sure to make a lot of noise and carry spray. Be aware that the park service requires park-approved bear canisters to be used in the backcountry. The park provides canisters free of charge.
I did this hike in the spring. The best time in my opinion because the trails and open areas were lined with wildflowers. A good stopping point for the second night is between the Webb Canyon Patron Cabin and Moose Basin Divide. The camp has great views and is near a water source for cooking/replenishing your supplies.
On the morning of the third day, you’ll cross Moose Basin Divide. The trail gets fairly rocky and there are awesome rock formations all around as you hike toward the Divide. Be sure to bring a camera.
The next hike is into Owl Creek Canyon. This is fairly steep in spots but not too tricky at all. The final (3rd) night of camping is in Owl Canyon, just before the Owl Creek ford. In this spot you will enjoy spectacular views of the canyon on one side and a beautiful forest on the other. This spot is known for Elk gazing because of the lay of the land, but I did not see any elk on my trip.
The ford across Owl Creek is pretty cold, but not very deep. Here, I took the cutoff for the Berry Creek trail to Glade creek trail as it was suggested by other hikers. The cutoff to Berry Creek lands you in slightly deeper waters, but as always, spectacular views and seemingly no other hikers.
This route is challenging without being too difficult. The peace and serenity found within the quiet and lack of other hikers is what I enjoyed most.
For more information please visit http://www.nps.gov/
A side note from the National Park Service: When planning a backcountry camping trip in Grand Teton National Park, backpackers should expect to travel no more than 2 miles per hour. Add an additional hour for every 1,000 feet of elevation gain. Also, trip planning that requires going over more than one pass in a day is not recommended.
Backpacking to Owl Canyon