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    This reflects the 10Adventures difficulty rating for each route. We aim to keep ratings consistent across regions.
    This reflects the total elevation gained throughout this route as measured by the GPS file. This includes all ascents and descents, and is higher than what is quoted in most route guides, which simply measure the distance between the starting-point and high-point of the route.
    492 m
    This reflects the return distance of this route as measured by the GPS file.
    16.3 km
    This reflects the estimated time the majority of users will take on this trail. If you are slower, add time to the top-end figure. If you are fast, then you may complete this route faster than this time range.
    User Ratings
    These ratings are completed by users who have completed this trail and not subject to reviews by 10Adventures.
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    Directions to Trailhead

    Murphy Loop


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    Table of contents

    The Murphy Trail is a beautiful, long hike down to and through a canyon in the Island in the Sky District of Canyonlands National Park. This trail is moderately challenging with sections of steep switchbacks, so make sure you arrive prepared. The Murphy Trail sees little traffic, so it's a great place to go for a long, peaceful hike in the Utah desert.

    Route Description for Murphy Loop

    The Murphy Trail is a gorgeous, 16.1 km hiking loop through the Murphy Wash in the Utah desert. The most challenging part of this hike is the descent down into the wash; this section is steep, so hikers should be prepared with good, supportive footwear. Hiking poles can be a great asset on this trail as well to aid in the ascents and descents. Arrive prepared for a big day, and the Murphy Trail is all yours. This hike doesn’t get a lot of visitors, so it’s a fantastic place to go for some peace and quiet in Canyonlands National Park.

    From the trailhead, follow the path to a divide—stay left and continue on to the next divide. This split marks the beginning and end of the loop. Take a right at this divide to hike the loop counterclockwise. Follow the cairns and stay left at the subsequent divide until you return to the beginning of the loop.

    From the end of the loop, simply retrace the main trail back out to the trailhead. If you are looking for more to do in the area, check out the Murphy Point Trail that shares the same trailhead or head down the road to the White Rim Overlook and Gooseberry trails nearby.

    Getting to the Murphy Loop Trailhead

    From the Island in the Sky Visitor Center, follow Grand View Point Road for 13.8 km to the Murphy Trailhead on the west side of the road.

    Route Information

    • Backcountry Campground:

      Murphy Hogback Campsites A, B, and C

    • When to do:

      March to November

    • Pets allowed:


    • Family friendly:


    • Route Signage:


    • Crowd Levels:


    • Route Type:


    Murphy Loop Elevation Graph

    Weather Forecast

    Check Area Weather


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