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Backpacking in Grand Teton National Park!


This backpacking vacation in Grand Teton National Park, via shuttle boat: 9.6 miles round trip, 5 hours, 1,530 ft total climbing. This popular trail leads into Cascade Canyon with views of the Grand Teton, Mt. Owen and Teewinot.


Jackson Hole, Wyoming
Jackson Hole, Wyoming, grand teton national park

I drove to Jackson Hole, Wyoming from Denver, Colorado back in September, 2003. I was concerned about the cost of staying there, since I knew wealthy people from New York flew out there. I was relieved to find that I could get a motel room for $40/night when I drove into town. So I booked a room for 2 nights.

The next day, I headed out for the Grand Teton National Park. The Fall colors this time of year are just incredible! I love being in this part of the country in September.

Grand Teton National Park
Grand Teton National Park Entrance

Fall Colors!
Fall Colors Grand Teton National Park

On my way to Jenny Lake, I turned and crossed this bridge that took me over the Snake River, and I got out of my car by the bank and wow, this river really moves fast! One of my friends and his wife took a float trip on this river and told me how nice it was since they had a guide to steer them and all they had to do was sit back and enjoy! I would like to do that one day if I ever get back here again on a backpacking vacation.

Snake River
Snake River Grand Teton National Park

I drove back over the bridge and headed for Jenny Lake where I would go on my hike. I pulled over and got a nice shot of the Teton Range in Grand Teton National Park. These mountains appear to shoot straight up!

Teton Range
Teton Range, grand teton national park

I soon arrive at my destination, Jenny Lake in Grand Teton National Park, where I will take a boat across taking 4 miles off my hike today. It is a 2 mile one way walk to the other side of the lake. We get started and I have a chance to just sit back and enjoy the scenery on this backpacking vacation!

Boat Launch at Jenny Lake
boat launch Jenny Lake, grand teton national park

View from Boat
view from boat Jenny Lake, grand teton national park

We get to the other side and I start out on my hike into Cascade Canyon. I cross a creek on a foot bridge. I then come to Hidden Falls. I quickly learn why this is called "Cascade Canyon" in Grand Teton National Park. There are cascades and waterfalls all along this canyon!

Foot Bridge
foot bridge Cascade Canyon, grand teton national park

Joe at Hidden Falls
Hidden Falls Grand Teton National Park

The trail ascends steeply here. I get up to a higher point on the trail and I meet this nice couple from Ohio. They are kind enough to let me tag along since I don't want to hike alone. This is Bear country and you never want to hike by yourself. It is always better to be in a group and make enough noise to let any Bears know you are coming.

Couple from Ohio
Ohio couple Jenny Lake, grand teton national park

Boat on Jenny Lake
boat on Jenny Lake, grand teton national park

We continue to ascend up this trail and we reach a spot with a beautiful view of Jenny Lake! Finally, we begin our walk into Cascade Canyon here in Grand Teton National Park. Our goal is to reach the fork in the trail at the end of this canyon.

Jenny Lake from Trail
Jenny Lake from trail, grand teton national park

Cascade Canyon Trail
Cascade Canyon Trail, grand teton national park

I soon hear water running from my left and I look up on the side of the mountain and I see a nice waterfall! There are many of these along this canyon here in Grand Teton National Park, fantastic! We soon decide to stop for lunch and we walk over to the creek and find some large rocks that we can sit on next to the water.

Cascade Canyon Waterfall
Cascade Canyon Waterfall, grand teton national park

Rest Stop!
rest by stream Cascade Canyon, grand teton national park

Continuing on we come to some golden Aspen trees. Great color! Later I look way up on the left and see this hugh rock peak. Can you imagine someone climbing that? I can't. This may be Mount Owen.

Golden Aspens
Golden Aspens Cascade Canyon, grand teton national park

Mountain Peak
Mountain Peak Cascade Canyon, grand teton national park

We then come to a place in Grand Teton National Park where the canyon is a lot wider and has gorgeous colors! We are not sure how close we are to the fork in the trail? The couple from Ohio says they want to turn back so as to not miss the last boat. We would have to hike an additional 2 miles if we miss it. If I was by myself, I would continue on. But since I am with them and I know there are Bears and Moose out here, I decide to go with them.

Just the same it was a great hike and we had a wonderful day. Perfect sunny weather with no rain. Hopefully one day on another backpacking vacation, I'll get back to Grand Teton National Park, and maybe do the float trip on the Snake River or do one of the other hiking trails!

Nice Colors!
Nice Colors Cascade Canyon, grand teton national park

Did you know that Jenny and Leigh Lakes are named for the fur trapper “Beaver” Dick Leigh and his wife Jenny? Beaver Dick and Jenny assisted the Hayden party that explored the region in 1872. This couple impressed the explorers to the extent that they named the lakes in their honor.


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Grand Teton National Park




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