We have been to Grand Teton National Park previously three times. All times was just for a day or so to go to specific places. The first time we were there, well all three times, we were visiting Mike’s Mom and Dad, who worked every year for 13 summers in Yellowstone. We would see all of Yellowstone and then near the end of our trips we would go to the Bar J, Rendezvous Mountain, and Jackson and of course see the sites we needed and everyone needs to see while in Grand Teton. This time the trip was all about the Tetons for us. We found some boondocking designated campsites, called Antelope Springs Dispersed. For $15.00 there was trash, and water and pit toilets. The road starts up the mountain on pavement and then the pavement changes to washboard, gravel, it does not flatten out and the truck skipped on part of it. Scary and sketchy for sure. But once in the campground the sites are level while the road to it is not. The road in front of us was a 7% grade, the air was thin, and it made walking literally breathtaking, just like the views. There was virtually no cell service up there but I was able to squeak out my daily Instagram posts but sometimes it was difficult. We were just there to sleep and take in the sites anyways so it was a good place to be. We just made sure we were back before dark because the thought of climbing the mountain did not feel like a great time for us.
We did head into Jacksonhole, where our son was able to see us on the camera and he is in North Carolina, pretty cool. We went to the Fish Hatchery, which was pretty cool and had a little tour of it.
We planned on doing some hikes and the one we wanted to do Hidden Falls, which takes off from Jenny Lake. We got there nice and early (glad we did) and headed out. We were going to take the shuttle boat over, but apparently we could not get an answer as to when they were taking off, so we decided to hike it. The crowd also decided to the same thing. It was super crowded at one point that I really didn’t enjoy it but we found another hike right off of the main trail from the Hidden Falls trail, called Moose Ponds. There were three little ponds their, and moose are supposed to be there, we did not see any, however, we did see some really nice water falls. We only saw maybe 20 people on this nice loop trail. There was one point that there were some mosquitos but it just made us not want to lollygag too long. When we got back to the truck the parking lot was beyond full. People were parked probably about 2-3 miles away. Forget about getting on the shuttle boat, the line for that had to be 3 hours. Again we were glad to get there nice and early.
My suggestion is get the maps, brochures and like most of the parks they have a newspaper, study it and decide what you want to and need to see and do and make plans to do such. For example, we wanted to hike the hike so we made plans the day before to make sure we were up and out to get there early enough and as tempting as it was we did not stop at any of the pull offs that day. Another example, I had photos I wanted to get so we made an extra effort to get to the locations. Now I take the map that they give us and with suggestions from rangers and others write on the map what shots I wanted to get and the location.
Another day we went to Colter Bay and we saw the sign for Yellowstone, which was only about 20 miles away, how can we say no to that. We obviously couldn’t. We drove into Yellowstone and while nothing was quite open yet there was a ranger on duty who gave us the rundown of what was open and what was expected to be open. Yellowstone is still my favorite and probably always will be. After checking out Grant Village we headed back to the Tetons. When we got back to Colter Bay the visitor’s center was closed, so we knew we would have to come back.
One morning we got up early and went to all the pulloffs, and to some of the most photgraphed places in the park. That to me was the major highlight.
We obvioulsy did Morman Row for the photos. I sort of had a little mini meltdown, as this was our first time exploring the Tetons without Mike’s parents and how I would have loved to show Dad the photos I was getting.
Grand Teton is known as the “mountains of imagination”, which led to the creation of Grand Teton National Park, which is the home to 200 miles of trails and floats down the Snake RIver. This is one of the places that you must go to believe the beauty that awaits. Wildlife flourishes in the park as well, including of course Bison, which is the place where I got my first Bison pics of the year. It has established campgrounds and also the boondocking on forest land. We did score a night in the campground Gros Ventre, what a beautiful, breathtaking place. Between the overlooks and the pull-offs and the hikes you can’t go wrong with staying here. We stayed a full week and can’t wait to go back in August.
Stay tuned for Teton’s Part Two. Next week will be all about Yellowstone, Part One so be sure to like and consider following us so that you don’t miss any of our blog updates.
Until then keep exploring, discovering and dreaming,
Hope, Mike and Eris the Lowrider Campinghound