Grand Teton National Park
Teton Range, Wyoming
To many, Grand Teton is the smaller southern sister of the Yellowstone with majestic peaks and valleys filled with glacier lakes (photo above, Jackson Lake, circa 1902, courtesy LOC) of awe inspiring beauty, but slightly unknown compared to the older and more well-known park.  But Grand Teton does not have to take a back seat at all, and does not.  It generates nearly 2.5 million visitors every year to the nature of this Wyoming park and its 300,000 acres of wilderness, and has been drawing those visitors even before it was designated a national park in 1929.  Grand Teton draws visitors throughout the year, even during winter.  The park is open year round, although some parts of the park are closed during cold weather months.  It does get cold and snowy here, of course, with over 175 inches of snow each year.

There are scenic drives to take; Teton Park Road from Moose to Jackson Lake Junction, Jenny Lake Scenic Drive, and Signal Mountain Summit Road, which ascends part of the range for great lookouts of the mountains, valley, and lakes.  Some of these roadways are not accessible in bad weather.  There are countless trails to take, for the novice or experienced hiker.  With names such as Lupine Meadows, Taggert Lake, Menors Ferry, Granite Canyon, there should be one or more that will pique your interest and suit your needs and experience level.  Ask at a park ranger station for the list.  Within the park, or just outside, the activities seem endless.  From the skiing or shopping opportunities in Jackson Hole and resorts nearby to musuems such as the National Museum of Wildlife Art (north of Jackson along Route 191/26/89).  But all throughout your visit to the Grand Tetons, you'll be mesmorized by the peaks, which seem to rise endlessly into the sky, with one such peak, the Grand Teton rising to a height of 13,770 feet at its tip.


Things You Should Not Miss

1. Take a drive.  Take a hike.  Get outside.  This park is all about the vistas and scenery and less about the films and exhibits inside visitor centers.  Just take one look at that scenery and you'll know why.  Note: Remember, Grand Teton National Park is a wild place, so take heed of the park rules and regulations about the wild nature of the park, its animals and activities.

2. To get a better overview of the park, its natural resources, and its history, take the time to spend some time on a ranger-guided walk.  Available from the main visitor centers, on a variety of topics.  Contact the park rangers at each location for a schedule of events.

Jackson Lake, Grand Tetons, 1892

What is There Now

Visitor's Centers
There are five main visitor centers and museums at Grand Teton.  (Above photo) Jackson Lake, Circa 1892. Courtesy LOC.

    * Colter Bay Visitor Center and Indian Arts Museum - At Jackson Lake, twenty-five miles north of Moose.  Colter Bay is the main visitor center in the northern part of the park.  Open early May to mid-October.  Museum tours.

    * Flagg Ranch Information Station - Between Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks along the John D. Rockefeller Memorial Parkway.  Open early June to early September.

    * Jenny Lake Visitor Center - At South Jenny Lake eight miles north of Moose.  Center of the park.  Open May 15 to late September.  Has exhibits, guided walks, and a bookstore.

    * Craig Thomas Discovery and Visitor Center
- Twelve miles north of Jackson, Wyoming, and open all year.  Main visitor center in southern section of the park. It has a park documentary, natural history exhibits, and guided ranger walks.

    * Laurance S. Rockefeller Preserve Center
- On Moose-Wilson Road four miles south of Moose.  Open late May to late September.  Orientation to the preserve plus ranger walks.

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Lodging and Camping

Lodging
    * American Alpine Club Climber's Ranch - Dorm rooms.
    * Colter Bay Cabins - 208 log cabin units on Jackson Lake and tent-cabins.
    * Dornan's Spur Ranch Cabins - Year round log cabins on the Snake River.
    * Flagg Ranch Resort - Lodge and log style units.
    * Jackson Lake Lodge - Resort hotel with 385 rooms.       * Jenny Lake Lodge - 37 cabins next to Jenny and String Lakes.
    * Signal Mountain Lodge - Jackson Lake lakefront apartments, log cabins, and motels units.
    * Triangle Ranch - Dude ranch.

Camping
Six campgrounds dot Grand Teton National Park.
   
    * Colter Bay Campground - 350 sites 25 miles north of Moose.  Wooded.
    * Flagg Ranch Campground (John D. Rockefeller Parkway) - 175 sites.  Forest.
    * Gros Ventre Campground - 360 sites 11 miles southeast of Moose.  Along Gros Ventre River.
    * Jenny Lake Campground - 51 tent sites.  Near Jenny Lake among pines and boulders.
    * Lizard Creek Campground - 60 sites in north end of park.
    * Signal Mountain Campground - 81 sites 16 miles north of Jenny Lake with lake and mountain views.

Grand Teton Links

Grand Teton National Park
Jackson Hole and Greater Yellowstone Visitor Center
All Grand Teton

Nearby Attractions

National Elk Refuge
Wyoming Tourism
Bridger-Teton National Forest
Caribou-Targhee National Forest
Yellowstone National Park


Grand Teton Then and Now

Grand Teton

Grand Teton Then

How the Park Started- From its controversial beginning, Grand Canyon National park began with six glacier lakes and the Teton Range with 96,000 acres in 1929.  It would continue to add acreage, particularly when the Jackson Hole National Monument was added to park boundaries in 1950.  And the controversy.  Well, expansion of Yellowstone to the south was proposed as far back as 1897 and continued for the next twenty years, with special interests concerned about sheep grazing, ranching, and Jackson Hole businesses in the area halting initial proposals.  (Photo above) Ansel Adams photograph of Grand Tetons, 1941-1942, courtesy NARA. 

Menors Ferry Historic District - This area near the current Craig Thomas Discovery and Visitor Center off Teton Park Road is the site where Bill Menor built a ferry to shuttle people from the east and west bank of the Snake River.  Prior to 1890, there was no settlement on the west bank.  Menor had come to the area in 1894 and began a homestead next to the river, building a ferry to cross from the east to the west.  For ten years, he was the only settler on the west bank.  Menor charged 50c for a wagon team and 25c for a rider and horse.  
 

Grand Teton Now

Grand Teton National Park

Lots of Mountains
-  (Photo above) The Grand Teton Range.  Photo NPS.  This is the reason you probably came and it's beauty is worth the visit.  At almost every turn, you can see the grand vistas of the Tetons, whether you see them on foot, while camping, climbing, fishing, or swimming.  In winter, your ski or snowshoe vantage will recall a coating of white over the vista, which can be a wonder to behold.

Lots of Water -  Although most associate Grand Teton National Park with the mountain peaks, many will be surprised with the amount of water in the park.  The Snake River snakes through the entire park and there are many lakes, including the large body of Jackson Lake and smaller (by comparison) lakes such as Jenny, Leigh, Phelps, Emma Matilda, Two Ocean, and others.  There are plenty of opportunities to fish, float, boat (including motor on Jenny and Jackson), take a tour or cruise, kayak, or windsurf.

Menors Ferry Historic District - Today, you can visit Menor's homestead cabin and country store, take a walk down the Menor's Ferry Trail, plus take a ride on a replica of his original crossing.






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Visitor Statistics

Grand Teton
National Park
2,688,794 visitors

#28 Most Visited National Park Unit



Park Size

Grand Teton
National Park
307,695 acres (Federal)
309,995 acres (Total)

Source: NPS, 2013 Visitor Statistics; Visitor Rank among 369 units.



Grand Teton National Park Entrance Fees

Private Vehicle
$25 for 7 days
Pedestrian/Bike
$12 for 7 days
Motorcycle
$20 for 7 days

Winter Day Use- $5

Grand Teton and Yellowstone Annual Pass- $50

Includes entrance to Yellowstone National Park. Fees subject to change without notice.



Grand Teton Weather

Summer
70-80 degrees during the day, but cool nights near 40. Common afternoon thunderstoms.  The average high temperature in July is 79.8 degrees with an average low of 41.2.  

Winter
Heavy snow fall by November 1 through March.  Common sub-zero temeratures. Average high temperature in January is 25.7 degrees with an average low of 1.2 degrees.  The average annual snowfall exceed 176 inches.
 

Temperature above taken at Moose, Wyoming.  For more info, visit mountainweather.com.





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