Majestic mountains, stunning lakes, picturesque meadows, and wildlife... we loved the beauty on our trip to Grand Teton National Park! This post includes our itinerary, FAQs, & overall experience in fall 2022.
After years of guiding adventure trips for teens, I started hosting trips for adults! Because the logistics of guiding (coordination, gaining permits, holding insurance) are very difficult to handle as an individual, I started working with TrovaTrip, an awesome company that hosts group travel.
People have mixed feelings about group travel, but I love it. You're getting a group of people together who all want to travel, try something new, and have fun. Everyone is stepping outside of their comfort zone, trying something new, and saying yes to adventure. I think that's incredible and it's brought about some amazing experiences.
Grand Teton National Park
Grand Teton National Park is an incredible place to explore in Wyoming. The Park features the Teton Mountain Range, alpine lakes, mountain meadows, and wildlife.
This park offers hiking trails, scenic drives, camping, boating and paddling, swimming, fishing—all the outdoor activities you could want.
Where is Grand Teton National Park?
Grand Teton National Park is in Northwestern Wyoming. It's north of Jackson, Wyoming and south of Yellowstone National Park. It's an amazing Wyoming wonderland!
Honestly, I haven't had a chance to explore much of the state other than in my travels to Grand Teton and the area surrounding it. I'm sure the rest of Wyoming is great, but it's certainly hard to beat these views!
Grand Teton National Park Trip Itinerary
Here's a detailed overview of our trip itinerary. This includes hikes, scenic drives, and what we did every day on the trip.
The main goal of Day 1 was getting to Jackson, Wyoming. If you're reading this in the future, you'll need to know that traveling anywhere in 2022 has been crazy. Gas prices are high, flights are consistently delayed, and it's actually really hard to guarantee you'll get somewhere on time.
The plan was for everyone to fly into the Jackson Hole Airport by early afternoon. Once everyone arrived we would make the short drive to the campsite where we would set up camp the next few days.
Brunch in Jackson
Myself and a few other girls arrived early to Jackson Hole. Instead of hanging out at the airport all day, we decided to venture out! We went to Cafe Genevieve for brunch, which had delicious food and great outdoor seating. Since we had all of our luggage with us, along with people that joined our party throughout lunchtime, we had plenty of seating and service that was accommodating to us.
After a few hours of hanging out at Cafe Genevieve, it was time to get our whole group together! Since the majority of our group had flown in early and were hanging out in downtown Jackson Hole, the shuttle was able to get us from there (so convenient!) We met our local guide for the week (Hi Chadwick!) and then headed back to the airport to pick up the final members of our group.
At the airport we met everyone in our group and loaded everything into the shuttle. Luckily the airport, downtown Jackson Hole, and the campsite were all relatively close together so we didn't have too much driving ahead of us.
The very first thing we did was get our campsite ready for the next few days. This entailed setting up tents and the camp kitchen, water proofing everything, and organizing gear.
We camped at the Snake River Cabins & RV Village in Jackson, Wyoming. The tent campsites were right along the Snake River which was amazing! It was such a beautiful view to set up a tent here. The campsite also had plenty of space, bathrooms and showers, and a camp store. We all enjoyed this site!
Downtown Jackson Hole
Since we didn't have enough time to go into the park and explore on Day 1, we spent the evening hanging out in Jackson Hole! We walked around the square, browsed shops, and stopped in the bars. It's a cute (yet expensive) town to walk around.
Back at Camp
After walking around downtown Jackson Hole, we headed back to the campsite. We spent the evening making dinner, hanging out, and getting to know each other better. We also talked about the next day and everyone went to sleep stoked!
This was our first full day in the park! Though we woke up to some cold, rainy weather, we were all still very excited for the day.
Morning at the campsite
It's not the easiest to get out of a warm, cozy sleeping bag, but knowing there were beautiful views of the Snake River right outside my tent made it better!
We started the day with breakfast, coffee, and packed our bags for a full day of fun.
There was some heavy rain in the morning but the forecast clear skies in the afternoon so we decided to spend a bit of time at the Visitor Center before starting our hike.
I always love to stop at the visitor center. I usually get a stamp in my parks passport, a postcard, and a free map of the trails.
Jenny Lake Boat Shuttle
Our plan was to start the day by hiking up to Inspiration Point! We wanted to maximize our time hiking so we took the Jenny Lake Boat Shuttle across the lake. You don't have have to take a boat across the lake, but we decided to boat shuttle one way and then hike back.
Hike to Inspiration Point
The first stretch of our hike was to Inspiration Point. This was a quick little hike up to a pretty viewpoint of the lake! The spot was pretty overcast on our way up due to the rain, but spoiler alert: it was clear when we hiked back down a few hours later!
Hike on Cascade Canyon Trail
The hike into Cascade Canyon is amazing! I had already done this hike before, but loved it so much that I just knew we had to do it on this trip.
Cascade Canyon trail has a little elevation at the start, but is generally flat. It winds throughout the canyon and you have beautiful mountain views surrounding you! There's gorgeous views everywhere and even wildlife.
Though it rained on and off throughout the hike, it was still amazing! We all absolutely loved this one. And because of the weather, the trails were not crowded at all!
After hiking into the canyon for a few miles, we stopped to enjoy our packed lunches before turning around to hike back. Instead of taking the shuttle back, we hiked around Jenny Lake. There were a bit more crowds as the sun was shining but it was beautiful! Highly recommend.
Even though we spent all day hiking, we still weren't ready to say goodbye to the park for the day! We decided to take the scenic drive around the park. You can drive from the bottom to the top of the park with incredible views everywhere you look! Drive around lakes, next to mountains, and through fields. We stopped at a couple of viewpoints of the Tetons, the Snake River, and Mormon Row.
Back at the campsite
Our evening was super relaxing. We cooked dinner, hung out, and enjoyed a campfire. We also made a plan for the next day, which would be some time in the park AND white water rafting!
While we're a group and do a lot together, the evening can be spent doing whatever is best for you! Want to read? Do it. Need a shower? Take it. The ones who want to hang out at the campfire can and others can soak up some alone time.
Another full day of fun! We all were extra excited for today because it was going to be filled with hiking in the park AND white water rafting!
We started the day by unzipping the tent and soaking up a beautiful view of the Snake River! This was followed by coffee, breakfast, packing lunches, and getting ready for the day.
Hiking at the park
Our hike today was the Taggart Lake and Bradley Lake loop. This was a 6-mile loop that provided lake and mountain views, beautiful scenery, and was very enjoyable. We spent a few hours here! We took our time hiking, stopped for so many pictures and snacks, and had a lot of fun together.
White water rafting
After hiking, we headed back to our campsite and got ready to white water raft! The weather was pretty chilly and we knew we had the chance to get wet, so we all wore rain jackets and leggings or rain pants.
Side note: there were wet suits available but we all declined and yes, we all regretted it a smidge later when we were freezing!
The rafting took place on the Snake River with Dave Hansen White Water Rafting. The section of river we were on was class II and class III rapids, which I would say was relatively tame. We got extra soaked from a surprise thunderstorm and it was chilly temperatures, but it was still so much fun.
The scenery was absolutely stunning! There were canyons, mountains, and beautiful rapids. We even got to see a bald eagle! Overall, we loved this.
Camp Hang Out
After rafting, everyone was chilly! We gave some time for showers, hot chocolate, and getting cozy for our last hang out together.
We made pizzas for dinner (so fun) and campfire cones for dessert (so yummy). We also did a book exchange, which was so much fun. Everyone who wanted brought a book to swap with each other.
We knew it was our last night together so we stayed up as long as we could before heading off to our tents.
This day was sad because it was our last!
We split into two different groups today to best accommodate how everyone wanted to spend their last morning in Wyoming.
One group of ladies (the ones with earlier flights) chose to have a slower morning at the campsite and spent the morning having a nice brunch in Jackson Hole before heading to the airport.
The second group of ladies (the ones with later flights) chose to spend a few more hours in the park before heading back to the airport.
Last hike in the park
String Lake Trail was the perfect hike for us because it was a 4.4 mile loop that offered amazing views. This was the warmest day we had and the skies were clear so we finally had the best views of the mountain we had the entire trip!
Jackson Hole Afternoon
After spending the morning in the park, we headed back to Jackson Hole. We grabbed coffee, brunch, and then hung out in the square before it was time to go.
When it was just an hour left before boarding, we finally made our way to the airport. I'm not sure if it was just time or day of the week, but the airport was very quick on Sunday evening! There weren't any delays or lines as I made my journey back home. I traveled with a big thankful heart!
Overall Trip Experience
Overall, this trip was incredible! As the group reflected on the trip, the highlights were the friendships, the views, & the activities.
The friendships. This trip was a group of 12 ladies who didn't know each other before the trip. Every single lady on the trip was vulnerable, kind, and got out of their comfort zone. Everyone was amazing and it was incredible for so many strangers to make connections and become real-life friends.
I hope to adventure with everyone in the future!
The views. Grand Teton National Park was stunning! It was awesome to get to do and see so much in such a few days. I love that we got to explore a few different areas of the park.
The hiking. This was the best part! Everyone was prepared and ready to hike together which made the experience so fun. We went into Cascade Canyon, hiked around lakes, and up next to the mountains. It was wonderful!
Loved the Tetons. We had an awesome trip to Grand Teton National Park and will definitely look forward to another trip in the future!
I can’t wait to visit again!
How many days do you need to see Grand Teton National Park?
I would recommend 4-6 days at Grand Teton National Park. There is so much to do! You'll want to make sure to prioritize the activities you want to do most.
What is the best month to visit Grand Teton National Park?
The summer months offer the best access to the trails in the park! The snow melts in June and is usually gone in July and August so you'll be able to hike on more trails.
However, the summer months are BUSY. The park is the busiest from mid-June to mid-September so visit outside that time to avoid crowds.
What was the weather like during this trip?
Unfortunately, the weather was not the most perfect for us. It was rainy and overcast most of the trip. This didn't stop us from enjoying activities and heading into the park! The weather was 50's and 60's as we were hiking and 40's at night.
There was sunshine and clear skies right before we got there and right as we were leaving. Of course we were still able to do and see what we hoped for with the weather, BUT, it could have been better with clearer skies. But this isn't something you can guarantee no matter when you plan a trip, so we made the most of it!
Is it better to stay inside Grand Teton or outside the park?
This depends if you're willing to drive every day! If you want a more affordable place to stay and don't mind driving, stay outside the park. If you want to be close, camp inside the park or stay in a lodge!
There are several lodges available in Grand Teton National Park. We did not stay at a lodge, but these would be a great option for families or those not wanting to camp.
Where did we stay?
We stayed at Snake River Cabins & RV Village. This was about 45 minutes from the park and had awesome tent camping sites. There were also cute cabins along the river as well! This had plenty of accommodations and is a great option if you're looking for a place to stay outside the park.
Best Hikes at Grand Teton National Park
To decide hikes on our trip, we used the AllTrails App along with talking to Park Rangers in the Visitor Centers. Both are helpful resources to choose hikes that meet your needs!
What was the wildlife like?
There is so much wildlife in this park! Be prepared because you're almost guaranteed to see something if you're paying attention.
Always respect the animals! Don't feed them, know how to identify them, and be aware of what to do if you encounter one.
How did meals work during the trip?
We had a similar meal routine everyday of the trip. We stayed just outside the park in Jackson, meaning we had to drove to and from the park every day.
We had breakfast at the campsite every morning, packed our lunches to take with us and eat during the park, and then cooked dinner back at the campsite everyday.
Our breakfasts were "continental" style and included berries, bananas, yogurts, cereal and milk, bagels, toast, and oatmeal.
For lunches we packed whatever we wanted! There was an assortment of breads, deli meats, cheeses, and sauces to make sandwiches, wraps, and bagels. There were veggies, apples, oranges, chips, and granola bars as well.
Our dinners were cooked at the campsite every day. We all helped with cooking and cleaning dinner every night. We had sausages, homemade pizzas, and chicken tacos. All classic meals with plenty of customizations available.
Where did you fly to go to Grand Teton National Park?
We flew into Jackson Hole Airport. It was quick and easy to get to and from downtown Jackson Hole from the airport. We had a shuttle service for our group to get picked up, and also used Uber for getting back and forth.
How in advance should you plan your trip?
It depends what time of year you want to visit the park, but a few months in advance is okay if you plan to visit late summer. If you're planning to visit at peak season, plan earlier.
The park wasn't very crowded when we visited. It may have been because of the weather, but there was always parking available and the trails weren't very crowded.
Is Grand Teton National Park worth visiting?
For me: 100% yes! I loved this trip and I will definitely be making another visit here in the future!
Of course, only you can determine whether it's worth going somewhere. I'm of the opinion that it's pretty much always worthwhile to check out the national parks (in the US and beyond). There's a reason these spaces are set aside, and a big part of it is the stunning beauty. As a bonus, you might get to learn some lessons in history, biology, archeology, and geology in these places.
Is Yellowstone or Grand Teton better?
How do you even answer that question?! Even though Yellowstone and the Tetons are only 31 miles apart, they are so unique! You cannot go to one and expect to see similar views as the other.
I hosted a trip to Yellowstone this summer as well and you can read about my trip to Yellowstone National Park too!
How were trip logistics planned?
Want to travel with me?
Sign up for the waitlist for any of these trips because you might be able to get a spot!