Now The Best Hike In Grand Teton: You Need to Do

The Grand Tetons, our favorite national park, offer a great choice of beautiful treks of varying lengths and degrees of difficulty to accommodate all outdoor travelers. Grand Teton National Park has everything for everyone, from strolls to challenging climbs. Be prepared to be awestruck at every turn by turquoise alpine lakes, famous craggy peaks, plentiful animals, and vibrant wildflowers. This article will describe the best hike in Grand Teton and help you select which walk or hike to do!

Best Hike In Grand Teton

Most Reasonable Time for The Best Hike in Grand Teton

Parts of Grand Teton are open all year, but late May to early October is the best time to go. From late fall to early spring, Grand Teton has cold weather and a lot of snow, so many hiking trails are closed.

To avoid crowds, you should go in June or September. In July and August, there are many people, so parking spots at trailheads are complete by the morning.

Spring

The weather is cold, with highs in the 40s during the day and below freezing at night. In the spring, less than 3,000 people come to the park every day. Most trails are covered in snow or mud until May, making spring a lousy time to hike in Grand Teton.

Summer

By the beginning of summer, the temperature is in the upper 70s, but at night it drops to the 30s or 40s. Hiking trails are clear of snow and well-kept. But Grand Teton is most popular in the summer when more than 25,000 people visit on average. Visit during the week or around sunrise or sunset to avoid crowds in the summer.

Fall

After Labor Day in September, the weather and the number of people started to improve. Even in October, daytime highs stay in the 50s and 60s. You can see wildlife and chase the beautiful fall colors when you go in the fall. Hiking in Grand Teton in the fall is a great way to avoid crowds if you don’t mind cooler days.

Winter

During the winter, Grand Teton is cold and snowy. Temperatures rarely get above freezing, and there is a lot of snow. If you can handle the snow and cold, you’ll get to be alone and enjoy great snow sports like snowshoeing, snowmobiling, and cross-country skiing.

Best Hike In Grand Teton
hike in Grand Teton

The Best Hike in Grand Teton Tips

  • Grand Teton National Park necessitates some preparation and a few essential goods to get you through the day.
  • The Grand Teton landscape is very rough, and without the proper footwear, you risk injuring your feet and cutting the trip short.
  • Because the park has long-lasting glaciers and snowfields, you should always be prepared for these circumstances. Wear appropriate clothing and equipment, such as base layers, snowshoes, thick socks, etc.
  • Keep an eye out for bears—you should always be cautious while visiting the park.
  • The Grand Teton National Park does charge a fee to enter.

Altitude Sickness and Acclimation to Elevation

Because the park has a very high elevation, several treks on this list include substantial elevation gain. Tourists should be cautious of attempting challenging high-altitude climbs without first acclimating to the peak. Altitude sickness symptoms include nausea, headaches, and shortness of breath.

Before attempting to climb or summit anything, taking it easy and performing several less demanding walks in the region is a good idea. Any lake loops on this list would be ideal for your first few days of travel!

Exposure to the Sun

Hikers in Grand Teton National Park are more vulnerable to direct sunlight and more strong UV radiation due to the high elevation and occasionally poor covering when trekking up canyons, mountains, and across boulder fields. Apply sunscreen often throughout the day.

I also advise you to carry a nice pair of polarized sunglasses. Sunglasses are handy for snowfield excursions because snow is a reflection and maybe blindingly bright. Because I have pale skin and eyes, remembering to bring sunscreen and sunglasses has enhanced my hiking experiences in the Tetons tenfold.

Unpredictable weather

The best hike in Grand Teton must accept that the weather might be unexpected. As previously said, summer is the best time to hike in the Tetons. On the other hand, summer thunder and rain storms tend to arrive swiftly and unexpectedly, and planning for them by carrying layers, packing wind and rain gear, and wearing suitable traction shoes will help you remain safe, dry, and warm.

The Best Hike in Grand Teton: Taggart Lake 

Taggart Lake is a three-mile round-trip trek that exposes the massive mountains for a shorter hike that gives direct views of the Grand Teton.

  • Distance: 3.0 miles 
  • Elevation gain: 300 feet
  • Difficulty: Easy 

Because it’s a popular hike, go to the trailhead early! You can return to Taggart Lake or continue to Bradley Lake.

The Best Hike in Grand Teton: Cascade Canyon

Continue via Cascade Canyon if you want to prolong your journey from Inspiration Point. It’s around 9 miles from the end of Cascade Canyon to the Jenny Lake Boat Dock, but you may go as far as you like.

  • Distance: 19.7 miles 
  • Elevation gain: 3,975 feet 
  • Difficulty: Moderate 

Cascade Canyon is tucked between Teewinot Mountain and Mount St. John, providing breathtaking vistas of the craggy peaks on each side of the path and your most excellent chance of seeing animals. The majority of this hike’s elevation increase is up to Inspiration Point. Cascade Canyon is very level, taking you into the heart of the Tetons without the severe elevation gain required by many other wilderness walks.

The Best Hike in Grand Teton: Inspiration Point

Less than a half mile from Hidden Falls is Inspiration Point, one of the most popular places to look out over the park. Jenny Lake and Jackson Hole are easy to see from Inspiration Point. The round-trip hike to Inspiration Point from the Jenny Lake trailhead is about 5.8 miles. You can cut the hike to 1.8 miles if you take the shuttle across Jenny Lake.

  • Distance: 5.8 miles 
  • Elevation gain: 800 feet
  • Difficulty: Moderate 

We didn’t think the views were that great, especially after hiking other trails on this list, such as Surprise Lake and Paintbrush Divide. Inspiration Point is easy to get to, especially if you take the shuttle, so it’s good if you want something quick, but I’m not sure we’d recommend going out of your way for this hike.

The Best Hike in Grand Teton: Jenny Lake Loop 

Jenny Lake Loop is likely the most accessible and popular trail system in Grand Teton National Park due to its lack of elevation increase, its status as the second-largest lake in the park, and its serenity and beauty despite heavy use. The path follows the lake’s shoreline and offers unobstructed views of the Teton Mountain Range.

Find this hike on Bryce Canyon National Park: The Best Guide Bryce Canyon National Park Hike: Explore Now

  • Distance: 7.9 miles 
  • Elevation gain: 623 feet
  • Difficulty: Moderate 

After exiting Teton Park Road at South Jenny Lake, park at the lot next to the Jenny Lake Visitor Center, from there, the path starts, and hikers can hike clockwise or anticlockwise.

The Best Hike in Grand Teton: Leigh Lake Trail

The complete trek may take some time, but the 3.7 miles of your Leigh Lake excursion will be straightforward. The elevation rise is just 50 feet, so you’ll be working on the same level terrain.

  • Distance: 7.1 Miles (11.5 km)
  • Elevation Gain: 100 feet
  • Difficulty: Easy

To get to Leigh Lake, use Teton Park Road in Grand Teton National Park to the North Jenny Lake Junction, then turn left to the Leigh Lake Trailhead/String Lake trailhead. The String Lake Loop Trail leads to Leigh Lake, the third-largest lake in the Grand Teton National Park.

The Best Hike in Grand Teton: Jenny Lake Loop

The Jenny Lake Loop showcases the stunning lake at the heart of most Grand Teton itineraries. The walk will lead you through open brush and lush wooded landscapes around the large lake.

  • Distance: 7.9 miles 
  • Elevation Gain: 623 ft. 
  • Difficulty: Moderate 

The Jenny Lake Visitor Center serves as the starting point for the loop. While the walk may be hiked in, I suggest trekking clockwise, beginning on the lake’s southern edge.

The Best Hike in Grand Teton: Surprise and Amphitheater Lakes 

This hike includes a difficult ascent up to two subalpine lakes in the Tetons. Middle Teton, Disappointment Peak, Grand Teton, Mt. Owen, and Teewinot Mountain may all be seen from the eastern banks of Amphitheatre Lake. 

  • Distance: 10.2 miles 
  • Elevation gain: 2,980 feet 
  • Difficulty: Hard 

But first, you’ll cross Surprise Lake, which has an excellent vista of Grand Teton from its southwestern side.

The Best Hike in Grand Teton: Inspiration Point 

Jenny Lake is the second biggest lake in the Grand Tetons, covering about 1,191 acres. Begin by taking the ferry over it! It’s just a 12-minute trip, but it’s breathtaking. 

Find the BEST PLAN FOR HIKING: TOUR DU MONT BLANC TRAIL.

  • Distance: 2.2 miles 
  • Elevation gain: 450 feet
  • Difficulty: Easy 

The route ascends from the boat pier through conifer woodland with huckleberry plants. Make sure to follow the little side route to Hidden Falls! Views from Inspiration Point include Jenny Lake, Jackson Hole, and the Gros Ventre Range to the east.

The Best Hike in Grand Teton: Static Peak Divide 

Jenny Lake is the second biggest lake in the Grand Tetons, covering about 1,191 acres. Begin by taking the ferry over it! It’s just a 12-minute trip, but it’s breathtaking. The route ascends from the boat pier through conifer woodland with huckleberry plants.

  • Distance: 16.3 miles 
  • Elevation gain: 5,000 feet 
  • Difficulty: Strenuous 

Make sure to follow the little side route to Hidden Falls! Views from Inspiration Point include Jenny Lake, Jackson Hole, and the Gros Ventre Range to the east.

The Best Hike in Grand Teton: Paintbrush Canyon Trail

The Paintbrush Canyon trail trek is steep and strenuous despite its funny name. It is about 20 miles long with a 4000-foot elevation increase on the upper end of the best hike in Grand Teton.

To travel to Paintbrush Canyon, you must first reach the String Lake Trailhead. This is on Teton Park Road inside Grand Teton National Park.

  • Distance: 20 Miles (32.2 km)
  • Elevation Gain: 4000 feet
  • Difficulty: Hard

When you arrive at the trailhead and go to the boat pier, you may take the Jenny Lake boat shuttle across Jenny Lake or walk toward the south and around to the other side.

Final Thoughts on The Best Hike in Grand Teton

There are several great treks in Grand Teton National Park, ranging from simple lakeside strolls to longer, multi-day excursions. There is no lack of places to find in Grand Teton, and hiking is the best way to explore the best hike in Grand Teton.

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