Adventure Van Travels – Grand Teton National Park

We only had three days in Yellowstone National Park, and I would have loved to spend more time there, but we have a few more places we want to visit before Meg and Aubrey leave us. The last time we visited, we spent about a week and could have easily stayed much longer. So we were sad to drive south after only a few days and exit the park.    That being said, Yellowstone is CROWDED! Like Disney World kind of crowded at many of the major sites. It took us 20 minutes to find a parking spot at Old Faithful Lodge, and we ended up giving up visiting the Middle Geyser Basin the first time we stopped because the line to enter the parking area went far down the road. Everywhere we went, throngs of people were around. Gift shops were overflowing, campgrounds are full and parking areas are overwhelmed.  The National Park Service’s ad campaign Find Your Park is clearly working! And I LOVE that. More people in the parks mean more people will fall in love with them and want to protect them. But it does make it harder to visit.   So while we were sad to leave Yellowstone, driving the short drive south into Grand Teton was a welcome respite. Because the crowds here don’t exist like they do up north.   Parking is plentiful, trails are quiet, and the scenery? Absolutely unbelievable! We started our first day here at Jackson Lake Lodge where we all used the free wifi to catch up on life outside this trip. We ate at the reasonably priced Pioneer Grill and all really enjoyed our food. This was the first restaurant we are at this trip so it really felt like a treat!    We then all took showers in Colter Bay which were welcome and very, very necessary! The small grocery store there is well stocked and I was able to easily replenish our good box.  We also enjoyed a short hike at Lunch Tree Hill and a longer trek around Jenny Lake. Both beautiful and we hardly saw anyone on the trails.       Wildlife is abundant too and we saw a hawk, large herd of elk and several pronghorn.   We camped at Colter Bay which was clean, pretty and oh so quiet and the stars were amazing!    I simply adore Grand Teton National Park. It is the perfect place to escape to after you visit the craziness of Yellowstone. Quiet trails, abundant wildlife, breathtaking scenery and no crowds. Happy Travels!

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I love to plan family travel adventures with our four kids. Encouraging time in nature, National Parks travel, backpacking and hiking are my passions and I love to write about them.

3 Comments

  • We are taking our four children (12,9,7,4) to Yellowstone and Grand Tetons. Any ideas for shorter hikes that would give the biggest bang for our buck? I have never been to either place.

  • I’ve been following your blog for years and wanted to thank you for providing so many wonderful National Parks tips and insights! We’ve made such great use of your suggestions–from enjoying a stay in the tent cabins at Colter Bay to Whale Rock hike in Canyonlands to stopping at Wall Drug in SD–our family has had so many amazing experiences because of your fantastic posts. We’re so excited about your family’s 3 month road trip, and can’t wait to read about your upcoming adventures, especially hiking Mt. St. Helens! Happy travels to you and your family!

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