Grand Tetons National Park

View of Grand Tetons and Snake River
Grand Tetons Mountains and Snake River

Grand Tetons and Jackson Lake Sunset
Sunset Jackson Lake Grand Tetons National Park

The Grand Teton are some of the most spectacular mountains in the US. They rise immediately out of the valley. There are no foothills. The mountains are said to be among the youngest mountains in the US. And the rocks in the park are among the oldest.

Clouds with  mountains

Brief History of Grand Tetons National Park

When you visit Grand Tetons or any other National Park for that matter, it's hard to imigane what it would be like without the park. Would there be mines, oil wells, and major develpment in place of the park? Would there be ghost towns left behind because the minerials were mined out? The fact we don't have this present in Grand Tetons National Park is s miricle due to John D. Rockefeller, Jr. The park was established in 1929 and protected 96,000 acres that encompassed little more than the jagged roof of the Teton Range and the six glacial lakes that sprawl at the bottom of the mountains' eastern flanks. John D. Rockefeller, Jr. felt that the park should be expanded and over several years purchased thousands of acres to expand the park. His attempts to donate the land to th US Government to be used to expand the park were bitterly opposed by local interests and were repeatly reject by congress. In 1943, after Rockerfeller threatened to sale all his land, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt to created the 221,000-acre Jackson Hole National Monument. This provide some protection for the land, but not yet the full protection provided to national parks. Efforts to include the national monument in Grand Tetons National Park continued to be opposed by local interests. And it wasn't until September 14, 1950, that President Harry S Truman signed a bill that merged the original 1929 park with the 1943 monument to create today's park. Without Rockefeller's long term interest it is unlikley that we would have the full beatuy of the park that we have today.

Our visit

Grand Teton National Park was the final stop on our trip west. We arrived at the park fairly late because of the time we spent in Yellowstone. One advantage of our late arrival was that we had a spectacular view of the mountains and Jackson Lake at sunset.

The most visited park areas are the mountains, several lakes, and the the Snake River. Because we were there in late September, there were no crowds at any of the locations in the park. However, at sunset overlooking the Oxbow, the parking area was nearly full. I suspect that it would have been completely full at peak season.

Because we had limited time, and wanted to paddle at least one lake, we did not have enough time to hike the trails. One more reason to come back with more time at a later date. We did have a chance to visit some of the must see spots such as Schwabacher Landing and the less visited Gros Ventre area. We had the Gros Ventere area to ourselves. It should be on the list of place to see.

Use the menu to see where we were able to visit, and check out the pages. Then plan your own trip to the Grand Tetons National Park.

mountains with river in foregraoud

Church with mountains

Gros Ventre Slide
Gros Ventre Slide Area