Thursday, February 27, 2014

Walks in the Park



Wildlife that it is common to see: Pronghorn, Bison, elk, mule deer, moose, coyote, short-tailed weasel, long-tailed weasel, American badger, striped skunk, black bear, grizzly bear, bats, American pika, snowshoe hare, chipmunk, squirrel, gopher, American beaver, mouse, woodrat, vole, muskrat, porcupine, shrew

Teton Park Road follows the base of the Teton Range from Moose to Jackson Lake Junction. Extensive sagebrush flats are interspersed with stands of lodgepole pines and aspens. Pronghorn gather in small groups where they browse on sagebrush. Black bears cross between forests and plains. At dawn and dusk look for elk grazing on grasses on the forest edge.

The Moose Junction Area in Grand Teton National Park includes places of interest such as the Craig Thomas Discovery and Visitor Center, Dornan's Chuckwagon and the Moose-Wilson Road. Moose Junction, which is the junction of highway 89 and the Teton Park Road, is located about 8 miles north of the South Park Boundary on highway 89, and it's definitely a place to take some time discovering and enjoying. One the best things about the Moose Junction Area in Grand Teton National Park is the fact that there are a lot of moose in the area. Keep an eye out for them because they really love the Moose Junction Area (thus the name MOOSE junction) and can show up anywhere along the road. It includes Dornan's Chuckwagon ~ Just about a hundred yards up the road from the Craig Thomas Visitor Center (northwest) is the popular Moose-Wilson Road in Grand Teton National Park. This narrow road works its way through some fantastic moose and black bear habitat, and the scenery is wonderful. So if you like to see moose, black bears, beavers, and grizzly bears, this is definitely a road to consider taking. There are several ponds along the road that often have moose in them, and because of the amount of berries in the area during the late summer and early fall, there is a large number of black bear feeding on these berries along the road.

Highway 89: Highway 89 Overlooks and Turnouts ~ Mormon Row ~ Antelope Flats Road ~ Snake River Rafting. Wildlife includes bison and pronghorn.

There is free wireless connectivity at the Craig Thomas Discovery & Visitor Center and at the Jackson Lake Lodge. There are no internet lines you can plug into, but wireless is available.

Flagg Ranch (1)

Pole Creek Loop Trail. 2.5 miles RT, 2 hours, 80 ft total climbing. West side of loop follows ridge above a marsh that provides habitat for waterfowl and other wildlife.

Flagg Canyon, 4.0 miles RT, 3 hours, 150 ft total climbing. Access from northeast side of Polecat Creek Loop Trail. Out and back north along Snake River with spectacular river views.

Flagg Campground (showers) (06/01/2013- 09/30/2013)

Jackson Lake

Colter Bay (2)
The Colter Bay Area includes: Colter Bay ~ Jackson Lake Boat Tour ~ Colter Bay Marina & Rentals ~ Colter Bay Village & Lodging Facilities ~ Colter Bay Campground (showers) (05/23/2013 - 09/22/2013)

Sagebrush, meadows and forests provide habitat for many mammals. Deer feed at the edge of conifer forests. Uinta ground squirrels flourish in dry sagebrush meadows, while red squirrels chatter incessantly from conifer forests. Look for occasional snowshoe hares and martens. Trails lead to ponds inhabited by beavers, muskrats, waterfowl and river otters, or may provide a view of bear, moose or elk.

Lakeshore Trail, 2.0 miles RT, 1 hour, 100 ft total climbing. Level trail follows Colter Bay shoreline; provides views of Jackson Lake and the Teton Range.

Heron Pond & Swan Lake. 3.0 miles RT, 2 hours, 200 ft total climbing. Follow mostly level trail to two ponds that are home to birds and other wildlife, including blue herons and beaver.

Jackson Lake Lodge (3)

The Jackson Lake area includes Jackson Lake Lodge ~ Jackson Lake Lodging Facilities ~ Willow Flats Overlook ~ Oxbow Bend. Wildlife includes moose, elk, and grizzlies. Views of Willow Flats and the Tetons.

Lunch Tree Hill, 0.5 mile RT, 1⁄2 hour, 80 ft total climbing. Short interpretive trail leads to the top of a hill overlooking Willow Flats and the Teton Range.

Christian Pond Loop, 3.3 mi. RT, 2 hours, 250 ft total climbing. Walk through marsh habitat near the pond, then climb a forested ridge for views of the Teton Range.

Moran Junction Area (4) includes Two Ocean Lake and Emma Matilda Lake

Oxbow Bend: One of the best places in the park to see swans, moose, river otters, black bears and the occasional grizzly bear and to photograph the falls colors. Views of Mt. Moran and the Snake River.

Signal Signal Mountain (5) includes Signal Mountain Road & Summit ~ Jackson Point Overlook ~ Signal Mountain Lodge ~ Signal Mountain Lodging Facilities ~ Signal Mountain Campground (Open May 10 - October 13) ~ Signal Mountain Marina & Rentals. Signal Mountain Summit Road climbs 800 feet to panoramic views of the Teton Range, Jackson Hole valley and Jackson Lake. Highway 89/191/287 follows the eastern shore of Jackson Lake north of Colter Bay. Enjoy a view of the Teton Range and look for wildlife in the aspen groves and meadows alternating with extensive conifer forests. Wildlife includes black bears, mule deer, elk, white pelicans, Canada geese and other waterfowl.

Jenny Lake Area

Jenny Lake Scenic Drive skirts the east shore of Jenny Lake and provides views of the peaks. Pronghorn and elk at entrance,

String (5) and Leigh Lake (6)

String Lake Area include String Lake ~ String Lake Picnic Area ~ Jenny Lake Lodge ~ Jenny Lake Lodging Facilities ~ North Jenny Lake Junction Scenic Road ~ Jenny Lake Overlook. This is elk habitat and a good place to watch the rut is along the road that runs through the middle of the meadow just before it reaches String Lake.

Leigh Lake, 1.8 miles RT, 1 hour, 40 ft total climbing. Hike along the east shore of String Lake, pass the bridge across a stream and climb to Leigh Lake.
String Lake, 3.7 miles RT, 2 hours, 325 ft total climbing. Trail circles the lake through a burned area below Rockchuck Peak and Mount St. John. Traverse forests to viewpoint. Park at Signal Mountain Lodge and walk on park road to trail.

Jenny Lake/Cascade Canyon

A shuttle boat crosses from south Jenny Lake to the mouth of Cascade Canyon. Purchase tickets at the South Jenny Lake boat dock. Fee Charged.

Jenny Lake Loop (8), 7.1 miles RT, 4 hours, 450 ft total climbing.
Gently rolling trail skirts lake shore.

South Jenny Lake Area includes Jenny Lake ~ Jenny Lake Visitor Center ~ Jenny Lake Boat Shuttle ~ Jenny Lake Campground (05/10/2013 - 09/29/2013)

Taggart Lake (10), 3.0 miles RT, 2 hours, 350 ft total climbing. Out-and-back trail traverses sagebrush flats and forests to a lake with views of the Grand Teton. Willows growing along Beaver Creek provide food for moose. Elk graze on lush grasses and deer browse on shrubs while black bears sometimes frequent the area.

Menors Ferry Historic District (11), 0.3 mile RT, 1⁄2 hour. Tour a historic homestead and ferry on the Snake River. Visit the Chapel of the Transfiguration.

Laurance S. Rockefeller


Lake Creek-Woodland Trail Loop, 3.1 miles RT, 1.5 hours, 300 ft total climbing. Hike along Lake Creek to the shore of Phelps Lake.

Cunningham Cabin (17) Cabin Loop, 0.8 mile RT, 1 hour. Tour a historic homestead.

Gros Ventre Junction Area: Gros Ventre Campground (05/03/2013 - 10/04/2013) ~ Mormon Row. Moose

MIsc. Notes

There is free wrireless connectivity at the Craig Thomas Discovery and Visitor Center and at the Jackson Lake Lodgr. There are no internet lines you can plug into, but wireless is available.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Grand Teton Campsites


There are five developed campgrounds in Grand Teton National Park. Reservations are available for some campgrounds for group sites, as well as first-come, first-served. The fee is $20.50 per night for a site or $8 per person per night for hiker/biker. The maximum length of stay is seven days per person at Jenny Lake and 14 days at all other park campgrounds, with no more than 30 days total allowed in the park campgrounds per year.

Colter Bay Campground

Open: 05/24/2012 - 09/23/2012. Phone: (800) 628-9988

25 miles north of Moose, with 350 sites, 11 group sites, trailer dump station, showers, and laundry nearby. Fills in the afternoon, if at all. Colter Bay is a wooded campground with larger sites and easier access if you are traveling with a camper, trailer, or RV. Close to Jackson Lake with plenty to do close by.

Gros Ventre Campground

05/04/2012 - 10/05/2012

(800) 628-9988

11.5 miles south and east of Moose, with 350 sites, 5 groups sites, and a trailer dump station. Generally fills in the evening, if at all. The campground lies along the Gros Ventre River with a mix of sites in sagebrush, beneath cottonwoods and adjacent to but a short distance from the river.

Headwaters Campground and RV sites at Flagg Ranch

Open: 06/01/2012 - 09/30/2012. Phone: (800) 443-2311

Located in the John D. Rockefeller, Jr. Memorial Parkway, just south of Yellowstone National Park's south boundary and five miles north of Grand Teton National Park. 175 spacious sites in a spruce-fir forest, full hook-up RV sites (20 and 50 amp electric), and camper cabins. Services include dump station, showers and laundry.

Jenny Lake Campground

Open: 05/11/2012 - 09/30/2012. Phone: (800) 628-9988

8 miles north of Moose, 49 sites, tents only. This is the park's most popular campground and is generally full by 10 a.m. Sites are in among the evergreens and glacial boulders a short distance from Jenny Lake. Only one vehicle, less than 14 feet long and 8 feet tall, is permitted per site. Trailers and pop-up tops are prohibited. 7 day limit.

Lizard Creek Campground

Open: 06/08/2012 - 09/03/2012. Phone: (800) 672-6012

At the north end of Grand Teton National Park, about 32 miles north of Moose, has 60 sites and rarely fills. A less heavily developed campground with sites in the spruce and fir forest. One side of the campgound is adjacent to and slightly above Jackson Lake. Vehicle size limited to 30 feet.

Signal Mountain Campground

Open: 05/11/2012 - 10/14/2012. Phone: (800) 672-6012

Nine miles north of Jenny Lake, 86 sites, and a trailer dump station. In peak season, usually fills by about mid-afternoon. Signal Mountain offers a mix of spruce and fir trees, hillsides, and lake and mountain views. Adjacent to Signal Mountain Lodge and marina with a campstore and amenities close by. Sites are generally small and intimate. Vehicles size limited to 30 feet.

Friday, January 31, 2014

More Walks in the Park

Jenny Lake

A shuttle boat crosses from south Jenny Lake to the mouth of Cascade Canyon. Purchase tickets at the South Jenny Lake boat dock. Fee Charged.

Hidden Falls 1M
5.2 miles RT, 3 hours, 550 ft total climbing. Via shuttle boat: 1.2 mile, 11⁄2 hours, 150-feet total climbing.
Popular trail follows Jenny Lake's south shore, then climbs to view of 200-foot cascade.

Inspiration Point 1M
6.0 miles RT, 4 hours, 700 ft total climbing. Via shuttle boat: 2.0 miles RT, 21⁄2 hours, 420 ft total climbing, Follow trail to Hidden Falls, then continue climb to Inspiration Point overlooking Jenny Lake.

Moose Ponds 1M
2.6 miles round trip. 400' elevation change. (the 1.1 loop on the map). Wildlife viewing.
Indus through willow Flats and over foot bridges around 3 ponds. Watch for elk and moose. Start at Visitor Center.
Best June-September.

Leigh Lake 2L
5.6 miles. 40' elevation change. Notable view.
A flat trail along the shoreline. Start at the String Lake picnic area.
Best June-September.

Bearpaw Lake 2M
8.0 miles RT, 4 hours, 350 ft total climbing.
From String Lake, follow forested shore of Leigh Lake to smaller lakes with views of Mount Moran.

Taggart Lake-Beaver Creek 1M
3.9 miles RT, 2 hours, 500 ft total climbing. Hike this loop trail to the lake, climb the glacial moraine and return along Beaver Creek.

Bradley Lake 1M
4.9 miles lollipop. 530' elevation change.
Starts at Taggert Lake trailhead. Goes through a sage brush meadow, climbs to a view of the Teton Range, then continues through a 1985 fire burn area to the lake.
Best June-September.

Jackson Lake and Colter Bay

Hermitage Point 2M
9.4 miles. 149' elevation change. Notable view.
An extension of the Swan Lake and Heron a pond Trail.

Lunch Tree Hill 1M
1.0 mile. 100' elevation change.
Short interpretive trail leads to the top of a hill overlooking Willow Flats and the Teton Range.

Christian Pond Loop 1M
3.3 mi. RT, 2 hours, 425 ft total climbing.
Walk through marsh habitat near the pond, then climb a forested ridge for views of the Teton Range

Christian Pond 1L
1.2 miles. 0' elevation change. Wildlife viewing.

Two Ocean Lake 2L
6.4 miles. 100' elevation change. Flowers and wildlife viewing.

Emma Matilda Lake 1M
1.8 miles. 100' elevation change.

Willow Flats Trail 1L
4.9 miles. 100' elevation change. Flowers and wildlife viewing.
Jackson Lake Lodge to Coulter Bay corral

Lookout Rock 1M
3.8 mile lollipop. 100' elevation change. Notable view.
Starts at Jackson Lake Ledge corral.

Teton Village Area

Phelps Lake Overlook 1M
2.0 miles RT, 2 hours, 450 ft total climbing.
Trail climbs moraine to overlook of Phelps Lake.

Phelps Lake 1A
4.0 miles 900' elevation change. Notable view. Best July-Sept.