Located just to the south of Yellowstone National Park, the second most-visited national park in the country, Grand Teton is a popular destination for Americans and international visitors alike. It ranks fifth in terms of visitation numbers at U.S. national parks, drawing more than 3.3 million visitors each year.
This national park is known for its stunning mountain peaks, diverse wildlife, and close proximity to Jackson Hole. It’s a great destination for more than just outdoor lovers; its beautiful views and tranquil atmosphere make it a must-see for everyone.
On our Yellowstone and Grand Teton 7-Day Scheduled Departure Tour, you’ll spend two full days exploring the incredible Grand Teton National Park, as well as nearby Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Whether you’re already booked your spot on one of our 2022 tours or are still deciding which of our trips is the right choice for you, keep reading for the ultimate guide to Grand Teton National Park.
History of Grand Teton National Park
Thanks to its close proximity to Yellowstone, the first national park in the country, you might guess that Grand Teton was established not long after President Ulysses S. Grant signed the Yellowstone National Park Protection act into law in 1872. But this is not the case. Instead, it took until 1929 for the park to receive its first protection order. The national park that we know today wasn’t created until 1950.
The first homesteaders arrived in Jackson Hole over a decade after Yellowstone National Park was formed. Development of the town was slow for several decades, before finally picking up speed in the 1920s. With an increase in development came an increase in tourism. By 1929, Congress passed protection orders for the Teton mountain range, as well as for some of the pristine lakes at the base of these mountains. In 1943, President Franklin D. Roosevelt created the Jackson Hole National Monument. Following a land donation by John D. Rockefeller, Jr, in 1950, Congress combined the land donations and the national monument and established Grand Teton National Park.
Today, Yellowstone and Grand Teton, and the areas in between the two, located along the John D. Rockefeller, Jr. Memorial Parkway that connects them, are some of the most popular destinations in the U.S.
The Landscape of Grand Teton National Park
Grand Teton National Park’s defining feature is the impressive Teton Range. These mountains were formed from a combination of glaciers, earthquakes, and erosions, occurring over millions of years. Receding glaciers are to thank for the pristine, clear lakes, including Jenny Lake, located at the base of the mountains.
The rocks in the Teton Range are some of the oldest known rocks to be found in North America. Despite this, the mountain range is one of the youngest in North America. Another ancient feature you can still see today in Grand Teton is some of the glaciers that helped to form the park’s peaks. Today, there are up to 11 glaciers active at any one time in the park.
Visiting Grand Teton
Grand Teton National Park is a popular destination for all kinds of travelers. The park draws endless researchers, naturalists, and wildlife enthusiasts each year. The pristine wilderness that still fills much of the park is the perfect environment for studying plant and animal life away from the effects of humans and urbanization.
If you have your heart set on spotting wildlife during your own trip, there are a variety of species you could get lucky enough to spot. This includes elk, wolves, bears, bald eagles, and more.
Hikers will find no shortage of trails, including some for every experience and fitness level. From rugged backcountry trails to short nature hikes perfect for families or those with limited mobility, the park has it all. Even a scenic drive through the park offers a wonderful chance to take in the incredible views.
Other ways to experience the park and surrounding landscapes include riding to the top of the Jackson Hole Aerial Tramway, zipping down ski slopes, or enjoying an off-road adventure — all of which you’ll have a chance to do on our Yellowstone and Grand Teton 7-Day Scheduled Departure Tour.
Planning Your Grand Teton National Park Adventure
If you haven’t had the chance to visit Grand Teton or want to see this beautiful park in a new and exciting way, our Yellowstone and Grand Teton 7-Day Scheduled Departure Tour is a great chance to do so.
Over the course of several days, your experienced guide will help you hit the park’s highlights, while also learning about the history and unique attractions that make this park so special. You’ll even have a chance to try out your photography skills by capturing your own picture of the world’s most photographed barn!
Spots are filling up fast for the two scheduled tour dates currently available for this trip. Give us a call today to secure your spot and see for yourself what Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Park are all about!