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Jackson Hole is the ultimate destination for adventure this summer!
Looking for a new holiday spot this summer? If you love spending time outdoors, whether you’re seeking wildlife or marveling at the beauty of nature, consider Jackson Hole for your next vacation. I’ve compiled a list of the best Jackson Hole summer adventures that will satisfy those who enjoy a relaxing journey and the thrill-seekers in the crowd.
ABOUT JACKSON HOLE
Jackson Hole is a valley in Wyoming, between the Gros Ventre Range and the Teton Range. In the winter, the region is very popular for skiing. In fact, Jackson Hole is ranked as the #1 Best Ski Destination in the United States, according to the U.S. News and World Report.
During the summer months, the national parks are the main attractions, including Yellowstone National Park and Grand Teton National Park. The Snake River weaves throughout the whole valley, from Yellowstone in the north to the Snake River Canyon in the south.
Photo Credit: Jeff Gunn
SUMMER ACTIVITIES IN JACKSON HOLE
While the region is renowned for its magnificent ski resorts, there are many opportunities for Jackson Hole summer adventures, too. Whether you’re savoring moments of tranquility or climbing the highest peaks, here are some ways to stay and play in this dazzling outdoor playground.
Whether it’s a short hike or an all day affair, strap on those hiking boots and hit the trails. It’s best to wear layers as the temperatures will vary according to the altitude. As with any hike, it’s a good idea to bring lots of water, bug spray, snacks like trail mix or granola bars, and of course, your camera. For added protection, you should bring bear spray, a first aid kit, and a headlamp in case you hike a little later than you anticipated.
You’ll find some of the most rewarding hikes in Grand Teton National Park. Even those who aren’t in the greatest shape will be able to conquer the easier hikes with a flatter terrain. I recommend you check out the Leigh Lake Shoreline, which offers spectacular views of Mount Moran beyond a sparkling lake.
For a moderate hike, follow the Jenny Lake trail head where you’ll discover Hidden Falls, a beautiful waterfall. The Lake Creek and Woodland Trail Group at the Laurance S. Rockefeller Preserve provides a variety of views as the path winds through forests, meadows, and by the shores of Phelps Lake.
Photo Credit: Ale Granholm
Don’t feel like hiking, but still want to admire the sensational scenery? Consider taking a scenic drive around Jackson Hole. Along the eight-mile Moose Wilson Road, just outside of Teton Village, you’re guaranteed to spot wildlife. The Inner Park Loop Road runs through Grand Teton National Park for 20 miles, where you can gawk at the towering mountain ranges. Travel along the Kelly Loop at sunrise or sunset to watch herds of bison roam along this 16-mile circle.
AN AMERICAN SAFARI
Speaking of wildlife, Jackson Hole has no shortage of that! Go on an American ‘safari’ as you try to spot the wide variety of animals that live in the area. You might stumble upon moose, wolves, elk, or even a grizzly bear. It’s also a paradise for bird-watching, so get out the binoculars and your birding guide to identify them.
With many lakes and rivers, Jackson Hole has just as many adventures on water as it does on land. Try standup paddleboarding, canoeing, or kayaking to float and glide across calm lakes. For something more exciting, embark on an exhilarating whitewater rafting excursion at the Snake River Canyon. For a rejuvenating experience, visit the Granite Hot Springs Pool to soak and relax.
Photo Credit: Jeff Gunn
Jackson Hole has a collection of paved bike trails called Pathways that run between Jackson, Wilson, Teton Villages, and the Grand Teton National Park. Pathways is an excellent choice for those seeking a more relaxed ride. For mountain biking, Grand Targhee and Jackson Hole Mountain Resort offer trails that are accessible by lifts running up the mountain. The Teton Pass trails have huge jumps for adrenaline junkies. Jackson Hole is a world-class biking destination, and there are many shops where you can buy and rent bikes to hit the trails.
Going mountain climbing is an epic adventure, so here’s your chance to climb the Grand Teton. There’s nothing like ascending to the top of a mountain to obtain a massive personal achievement. Check mountain climbing off your bucket list and make it happen in Jackson Hole.
There are so many ways to appreciate Jackson Hole from above. Ride the tram known as “Big Red” from the base of Jackson Hole Mountain Resort to the top of Rendezvous Mountain. You’ll travel over 4000 feet vertically! For incredible views of the town of Jackson and the Tetons, ride the scenic chairlift to the top of Snow King Mountain. The Bridger Gondola will transport you for free to an observation deck at the Jackson Hole Mountain Resort for Happy Hour.
If you want to soar like a bird above the valley, consider going paragliding in Jackson Hole. You’ll literally run off the side of the mountain, but you’ll be strapped to a tandem paraglider with a seasoned pilot who will navigate you safely to the ground below.
Other ways to experience Jackson Hole from above include hot air ballooning and flying in a small plane or glider.
SOAK UP THE SUNSETS
Get your cameras ready for those Instagram perfect pictures! Jackson Hole has some of the most gorgeous summer sunsets imaginable. Watch the sun go down at the Mormon Row Historical District to capture the vibrant sky as a backdrop to Moulton Barn, Wyoming’s most photographed barn. Other beautiful places for sunsets include Curtis Canyon, Jenny Lake, and the top of Signal Mountain.
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