Grand Teton National Park
Grand Teton National Park is one of the most spectactular, awe-inspiring places in America. Occupying a majority of the Jackson Hole valley, the park is home to overwhelming, massive mountains, pristine lakes and rivers, and abundant, teeming wildlife.
The Teton Range - with peaks rising as much as 7,000 feet off the valley floor - is the centerpiece of the park. Views from either of the two main roads, which run north-south through the park, are nothing short of spectacular. The highest, most prominent peak is Grand Teton, standing at 13,770 feet. South of the Grand are Middle Teton, South Teton, and Cloudveil Dome, among others. To the north of the Grand are Mt. Owen, Teewinot, and flat-topped Mt. Moran.
While the scenery is nice from the road, the park is best experienced on foot! Hundreds of miles of hiking trails wind around the lakes and through the mountains; the choices are almost limitless. From easy day hikes to multi-day backpacking trips, each trail has a distinct, uniquely dynamic character all its own. Incredible, often breathtaking scenery and wildlife sightings (elk, moose, black/grizzly bears, bison, deer, and more!) are guaranteed. Favorites, to name just a few, include Cascade Canyon, Granite Canyon, and Amphitheater Lake.
While the park has a magnetic draw for photographers and wildlife enthusiasts, the Tetons also offer some of the most demanding and technical mountaineering experiences anywhere in the world, especially during the winter. Climbers and mountaineers flock to the Tetons to hone their skills before moving on to the huge mountains of the world. Even so, during the summer the summits are accessible to almost anyone who's properly equipped; the experience is incredible for those who take on the challenge!
The outer road is open year round. The inner road between the Bradley-Taggart Trailhead and the Jackson Lake Dam is closed for winter and reopens on May 1st. It will be open to pedestrian and bike traffic by April 1st. Opening of the Moose-Wilson Road (from Teton Village) is weather dependent, but generally opens before May 1, 2011.