With the second-highest peak in all of Wyoming, hikes in Grand Teton National Park are a mountaineering dream. The hikes cater to every skill level and every adventure. From canyons to glacial lakes and snowy peaks, this park will have you coming back over and over again. In fact, you can even come and stay for a while.
Grand Teton National Park has camping facilities and lodging in the form of Jackson Hole Mountain Resort and Signal Mountain Lodge. You need national park service permits to stay on national park campgrounds and as for the lodge and Jackson Hole Mountain Resort, you will need a reservation. The Jackson Hole resort gives you access to incredible skiing in the Rocky Mountain Teton Range.
If you are spending time in the state we recommend combining it with some hikes in Yellowstone National Park in the northern part of Wyoming. You can also book this highly rated 4 Day adventure of the best of Yellowstone National Park and Grand Teton National Park. Search for wildlife like Bison and pronghorn sheep in Grand Teton, and visit Mammoth Hot Springs, Old Faithful Geyser and more! Check out more details here – Free cancelation within 24 hours of trip.
Best Grand Teton Hiking Trails
Grand Teton is the only mountain peak in Grand Teton National Park that compares to the height and grandeur of the Wind River range in the Rocky Mountains. That makes for some incredible views no matter which hiking trails you hit in the park. Up next we’re going to tell you about the 15 best hikes in Grand Teton National Park.
Note: Some activities and trails may be affected by COVID-19. Check for closures and restrictions before planning your trip to Yellowstone NP. Please Check with the NPS website for current conditions. Additional details are available at www.nps.gov/coronavirus. Before visiting, please check the park website to determine its operating status.
Where to Stay in Grand Teton National Park
The best place to base yourself to be close to all the best hikes in Grand Teton National Park hikes is in Teton Village. It is based around the Jackson Hole Ski area and has a lot of different kinds of accommodation for everyone. These are our recommendations on places to stay in Teton Village.
Luxury: Four Seasons Jackson Hole: If you have the budget and want to stay at one of the best resorts in the area then this is for you. With an amazing spa and incredible dining, it is a great place to relax after hiking the trails.
Mid-Range: Hotel Terra Jackson Hole: Located at the base of the Jackson Hole Ski Hill this boutique hotel is the perfect place to base yourself to be close to trailheads and still have all the amenities of the village.
Budget: Flat Creek Inn: This family-run Inn has comfortable rooms with beautiful views. It is located a little out of Jackson, but you are definitely away from the crowds which makes it a good choice for families.
Cabin Rental: Great Wyoming Cabin: This beautiful historic cabin sleeps 4 and is fully renovated. Feel like you stepped back in time with your own slice of historic Wyoming. Located in Wilson, it also has great access to the park.
Pick up your national parks entrance pass if you are planning to visit more than one National Park in the United States this year. Annual passes $80 and give entry to more than 2,000 federal recreation sites.
The Cascade Canyon Jenny Loop Trail
Cascade Canyon is one of the most popular hikes in Grand Teton National Park and there are plenty of trails to choose from. The ‘mother’ hiking trail is the Jenny Lake Trail, which will connect you to other trails. The Jenny Loop Trail is 8-miles long and has 623 feet elevation gain.
To get to the trailhead you’re going to have to head to Jenny Lake Visitor Center. You can get there via Moose Junction. From Jenny Lake Visitor Center you’ll take the Jenny Lake Loop Trail to the south end of the lake and on to the Cascade Canyon Trailhead.
Along the way, you’ll get stunning views of the lake from the Jenny Lake overlook and may even see some land and water animals. The trail is flat and great for nature photography if you’re so inclined.
You can take the Jenny Lake shuttle across the lake straight to the trailhead or for a picnic and scenic views. The cost of the shuttle is $10 one way or $18 for a trip each way. You also have the option of doing three other hikes from the Jenny Loop Trail. You can do the Hidden Falls hike, Inspiration Point hike, the Forks of Cascade Canyon hike, or all three.
If you decide to do all three hiking trails, you’re going to want to camp out. You will need a backcountry permit in order to camp and you can get that at the ranger station.
Book this Unique Grand Teton Wildlife Safari – Grand Teton National Park is an amazing wildlife destination and this 4-hour guided tour take you on a safari in search of bison, elk, moose, pronghorn, eagles, bears, wolves at sunrise when they are most active. (Free cancellation within 24 hours of tour)
Forks of Cascade Canyon Trail
For a bit of a heart-pumping hike, you’ll want to check out the Forks of Cascade Canyon hike. It is a 14.6-mile hike round trip. The Forks is a junction off of the Jenny Lake Loop where the north fork and south fork of the canyon meet.
When you get to that junction you have the choice of climbing to Hurricane Pass or going toward Lake Solitude – as the names indicate, one is for some adventuring and the other is for some walking and thinking.
The Forks trail is known for its gorgeous views of high peaks that resemble spires. It also has a cute little pond called Perch’s Pond which is a nice place to stop and have a snack. You might also see some curious moose on this trail. You can make your hike shorter by taking a boat shuttle across Jenny Lake.
If you take the shuttle you’ll cut 4 miles off your journey. The Forks hike has an elevation change of 2040 feet.
Hidden Falls Trail
The Hidden Falls Trail is a moderate trail that is a 5-mile out and back loop. You’ll be taking the Jenny Loop Trail from which the Hidden Falls Trail stems. Alternatively, you can take the shuttle across the lake and cut your trek down to a mile if you’re limited for time. There is a 550 feet elevation gain on this trail.
It is a very busy trail, and for good reason, as you get views of stunning waterfalls as well as Jenny Lake, which was carved from a glacier and is the second largest lake in the park. The Hidden Falls trail will not only give you a view of the falls but also take you behind them via the boat dock.
You should bring bear spray as bears are known to visit the area for berries.
The beautiful hike to Inspiration Point can be a little difficult for inexperienced hikers. It is a 5.8-mile round trip. You can reduce it by less than half by taking the lake shuttle for a 2.2-mile hike.
This is an easy trial and popular for families so you’ll rarely ever be the only one on it. The crowds are worth it for the stellar view at the end.
However, you should note that it can get muddy, snowy, and slippery as you climb closer to the top of Inspiration Point so trekking points can be of use.
If you’re a photo enthusiast, you’ll want to take the hike to Shwabackers Landing for its stunning panoramic photography opportunities. You will take a 1.3-mile hike on this trail and experience a mere 15 feet gain in elevation.
That means it’s very easy to trek with camera equipment. Of course, this trail isn’t just for photographers, it’s for everyone. Shwabackers Landing is especially good for families as it is a short hike and easy for kids to do too.
The trail is located at the Shwabacker Landing trailhead which can be found on Scwabacker Road which is off Highway 91. There is a parking lot there that you can park your vehicle at and then head out on your flat hike. You’ll pass by beaver ponds and a beaver dam and there is a whole bunch of wildlife you might get to see like bald eagles and antelope.
Looking for something unique to do in Grand Teton NP? Book this once in a lifetime hot air balloon over Jackson Hole that includes a breakfast champagne toast and extraordinary views of Grand Teton National Park’s mountain vistas and the Snake River. (Free cancellation within 24 hours of tour)
Taggart Lake Trailhead
It’s a 3.5-mile trail that is popular with families and those looking for walks more than a hike. This Teton trail has a 384-foot elevation change with climbs and drops that are on the soft side. You can get to the Taggart Lake Trailhead by entering Grand Teton National Park from the Moose Entrance Station and traveling north for about 2 miles.
The trail is used by cross-country skiers and snowshoers in the winter. Taggart Lake provides beautiful reflections of the mountains in its mirror pool. You’ll see numerous pretty meadows along your hike as well as thick forests.
Bears have been spotted in the area so it is a good idea to carry bear spray. Do note that the parking lot for the Taggart Lake Trail is small and fills up quickly so you might want to get there early.
This unique day tour lets you explore Grand Teton by boat, foot and air conditioned comfort. The 8-hour tour takes you toAntelope Flats and Mormon Row for iconic views of the Tetons, a one-hour boat ride along Jenny Lake and experience Oxbow Bend, Pacific Creek, Jackson Lake, and Signal Lake all in one day as you search for wildlife like bison and bald eagles. (Free cancellation within 24 hours of tour)
Jackson Lake Trail
The Jackson Lake Trail is a 7.5-mile roundtrip with an elevation gain of 102.3 feet. It’s a pretty easy hike to do but will take you about a half-day to do it. You’ll be happy to know that there is a Jackson Lake Campground for those of you that don’t want to do the full hike in one day. Just remember to get your permits if you decide to stay in the park.
You will find the Jackson Lake trailhead by way of the Clear Lake parking lot.
String Lake Loop
This is an easy 3.8-mile trek with a 280 feet elevation gain. You will need to go to the String Lake trailhead in order to access the trail. You can find the trailhead by taking Teton Park Road all the way to North Jenny Junction and turning left. From there you’re going to keep driving for about a mile and a half where you’ll find the parking lot for the String Lake trailhead.
On your trek, you’ll go through a beautiful lodgepole pine forest and also get a stunning landscape of Teewinot Mountain, Grand Teton Mountain, and Mt.Owen Mountain sitting side by side. Also, note that you’ll pass an avalanche area where you’ll see evidence of past avalanches that have wreaked havoc on the area’s flora.
The fauna on the other hand is doing well and you’ll likely see moose and deer along the way.
Phelps Lake Overlook Trail
The Phelps Lake trail always gets rave reviews from new hikers and makes it one of the best day hikes. Both for its ease and for all of the flora and fauna you see along the way. It’s a 6.78- mile loop trail with a 729 feet elevation gain. You can get to the Phelps Lake loop from the Death Canyon Trailhead which is located off Moose Wilson Road.
Be forewarned that you might get a little lost in the avalanche part of the Phelps Lake trail, but everyone always finds their way back. However, it’s a good idea to have a GPS with you to make life easier.
Thanks to the huckleberry bushes in the area, you’ll get a chance to spot a few bears among other animals.
A key attraction point on Grand Teton National Park Trail is Jumping Rock, which is a few miles just before you end the Phelps Lake trail. Essentially you climb onto the rock and jump off into the freezing cold water of one of the many alpine lakes. Anyone that’s ever tried it will tell you that it was totally worth it due to the views and the experience.
Static Peak Divide
It is a long and strenuous hike of 16 miles, Static Peak Divide is definitely not for newbies. The hike will have you gaining 5000 feet which also means a steep climb and some pretty spectacular views for those who choose to take the hike.
You will need to get to Death Canyon Trailhead in order to get on the Static Peak Divide. The Death Canyon Trailhead is located on Moose-Wilson Road inside Grand Teton National Park. You should note that if you’ve got a vehicle that’s particularly low to the ground, you might have some trouble going up Moose-Wilson Road as it is unpaved and quite rough in parts.
On your Static Divide hike, you’ll get an incredible view of Phelps Lake from the Phelps Lake Overlook. The lake is Grand Teton National Park’s number 6 lake in terms of size. Along your hike, you’ll get to see Aspen Groves and ancient Douglas Firs.
Death Canyon itself is incredible and dates back some 15,000 years. You’ll likely come across grizzly bears so make sure to pack bear spray. Also note that the higher you go as you near Static Peak, the greater the chance of ice and snow conditions so pack and dress accordingly.
Check with a ranger about the conditions of the trail you plan to choose a tough hike like this one.
Leigh Lake Trail
It might take you a while to do the full hike, but the 3.7 miles of your Leigh Lake adventure are pretty easy. The elevation gain is just 50 feet so you’ll be working with pretty flat ground.
In order to get to Leigh Lake, you’ll need to get on Teton Park Road in Grand Teton National Park and drive to the North Jenny Lake Junction and turn left to get to the Leigh Lake Trailhead/String Lake trailhead. The String Lake Loop Trail will take you to Leigh Lake, which is number 3 on the Grand Teton National Park list of large lakes.
Lake Solitude Trail
It’s a 15-mile hike with an elevation gain of 2300 feet so it’s best to do this hike if you’re prepared for some tough hiking. To reach Lake Solitude, you’ll need to take the Jenny Lake Trailhead which is found near South Jenny Lake at the west shore boat dock.
From here, you can choose to hike or you can take an $18 boat shuttle across Lake Solitude and begin your hike to the Canyon Creek Trailhead.
You’ll see incredible views the whole way to Lake Solitude but once you get to the lake itself, you’ll want to pause and take in the Grand Teton Range composed of the park’s 3 majestic mountains – Grand Teton, Mt. Owen, and Teewinot. You’ll finally know what an ant feels like in a park.
Taggart Lake – Bradley Lake Loop
You don’t have to be an expert hiker to hike the Bradley Lake Loop, although it’s not suitable for complete beginners either. The Taggart Lake – Bradley Lake Loop is 5.5 miles long and has a 580 feet elevation change. In order to get to the loop, you’ll need to reach the Taggart Lake Trailhead which is close to the Moose Entrance Station.
Bradley Lake is one of the smaller alpine lakes but no less spectacular than the other glacially-formed lakes. The animals seem to love the area, you’ll see bears and moose hanging around just taking it all in.
Paintbrush Canyon Trail
The Paintbrush Canyon trail hike is a steep hike and a difficult one despite the whimsical name. It is almost 20 miles long and there is an elevation gain of 4000 feet which is on the higher end for Grand Teton hiking.
In order to get to Paintbrush Canyon, you’ll need to get to the String Lake Trailhead first. That’s located on Teton Park Road inside Grand Teton National Park.
Once you get to the trailhead and walk to the boat dock, you can decide whether you want to take the Jenny Lake boat shuttle across Jenny Lake or you can walk toward the south and around to get to the other side.
The shuttle comes with an $18 fee one way. You’ll get to Paintbrush Canyon about 3-miles into your hike when all of a sudden you will be surrounded by the gorgeous reds and blues of wildflowers.
Two Ocean Lake
The Two Ocean Lake trail is full of wildlife. This is one of the best day hikes in Grand Teton National Park and it’s just 6.5 miles long. The trail is considered moderate with a 6910 feet elevation gain.
To get to your hike you’ll need to find the Two Ocean Lake trailhead. It is located on Two Ocean Road, which is off of Moran Junction. You should note that snow lasts on this trail well into spring so bringing snowshoes might be a good idea.
You should also note that despite there being bears all over the park, they seem to particularly love this area – grizzly bears in particular – so you will need to be extra alert. Warnings out of the way, you’ll find yourself treated to lush evergreens on one side and majestic Aspens on the other as you traverse the trail.
If you head north on the trail, you get a panoramic view of the Teton range. You won’t get very close to the lake during your hike but it’s pretty nonetheless, especially when wildflowers are blooming.
What we have found it that generally most of the trails in Grand Teton National Park are quite easy and fit within a day hike timeframe. But, to get the most our of your cisit we do recommend spending at eas a few days here discovering all the beauty that this part of Wyoming has to offer.
Whether you enjoy taking in the spectacular views along the snake river or you are up for more of a challenge, Grand Teton has you covered.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the best hikes in Grand Teton National Park?
The park has too many hikes in Grand Teton to call a single one the best. But if you’re up for some mysterious adventure then check out Death Canyon. You climb down about 12,000 feet and are surrounded by the canyon walls as you walk the canyon floor. You’ll see tranquil lakes and pools to balance the sheer wonder of the enormity of the canyon you’re traversing.
How many different hikes are in Grand Teton National Park?
There are 49 official trails in Grand Teton National Park but Grand Teton also has a bunch of trails you can mix and match to make one of your own.
Is it safe to hike in Grand Teton National Park?
It is absolutely safe to hike Grand Teton National Park as long as you follow park rules. Those rules include staying away from wildlife and not leaving garbage around that would attract it.
Can you hike to a glacier in Grand Teton National Park?
Yes, you can. Middle Teton is a glacier and you can hike it but it will be a challenge with its steep and slippery inclines. However, you will be rewarded with spectacular views at the end.
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