This is a diverse trail with many challenges, rewarded with stunning views and peaceful solitude.
Features: Birding — River/Creek — Views — Wildflowers — Wildlife
Dogs: No Dogs
The trail is well graded so the main challenge will be the long, steady uphill to the Lip.
Starting at Road's End, the Copper Creek Trail begins at the trailhead of the same name. It is well graded, but all uphill for about 8 miles. The trail is very exposed (start early in the day!) with few sources of water. It's a butt kicker, especially if you are at the beginning of a trip with a full pack. There's decent camping and a bear box at Lower Tent Meadow, and very slanty "campsites" at Upper Tent Meadow, which is difficult to find, with no signage.
The Copper Creek Trail ends at the ridge called the Granite Lip, and from there the trail drops into Granite Basin. For those heading out for a longer run, you can continue on the Simpson Meadow Trail
at this point. There is no water at the Lip, so if you need to camp, do a brief 1/2 mile cross country to the outlet of Grouse Lake, north of the trail and east of the ridge.
If you are planning finish this out and back as a day run, turn around at the Lip, and enjoy the steady downhill back to your starting point. On the way back you can enjoy the many views that you earned on the way up!