Best Hiking Trails in Grand Teton National Park
With jagged mountaintops, pristine rivers and idyllic lakes towering above bison-filled prairie, the northwest corner of Wyoming's got it going on with Grand Teton National Park and Yellowstone back to back. And if you've just been jostled around in its more popular northern neighbor, this is your chance to shrug off the crowds and take a walk on the wild side. So take your time (and take your backpack), and enjoy some gorgeous days in these inappropriately (or appropriately?) named (“Big Tit”) mountains. You can thank some lonely French trappers for that one.
Not yet convinced? Prepare to be wowed!
Getting to Grand Teton is often an adventure in itself, especially if you've just come south from Yellowstone. It's a drive for most visitors, but once you're there, you'll see what all the fuss is about.
So to keep it short (because we could go on and on), here are a few “don't miss” spots:
A hike to Surprise Lake. Surprise! It's beautiful up there. The ever-popular looong Paintbrush Canyon and Cascade Canyon Trail, the much shorter but beautiful Taggart Lake Loop, and literally dozens of other fabulous hikes in our “popular hikes” section below, which you should peruse at your leisure.
If you're not up for hiking, visit one of the visitor centers, and take a drive atop Signal Mountain or to the Snake River Overlook. Throughout the park, stay on the look out for moose, elk, and possibly even cougars, as well as herds of bison.
Get more info on hiking, horse riding, bird watching, fishing and much more, here.
When to Go
Grand Teton National Park is open year-round, but snow does close roads during the winter (though it also makes for some great backcountry and cross-country skiing opportunities). Check out the operating hours of various visitor centers, and make sure to check current alerts and conditions. Visiting in the dead of winter? See all the park has to offer.
Pups need to be on a leash no longer than 6 feet at all times, and off all trails. Grand Teton has gone through the effort to make an entire brochure about their pet policy, which you can find here.