Grand Teton National Park Promotes Healthy Family Recreation

June 5, 2009
As part of a nation-wide initiative to promote healthy family recreation in national parks, Grand Teton National Park reminds visitors and neighbors that numerous outdoor activities are available during the 2009 summer travel season. To support greater participation in recreational activities, encourage exercise, and develop healthy habits through outdoor recreation, June 6 has been declared as National Trails Day by a consortium of federal agencies, nonprofit organizations, and the recreation industry. In addition, June 13 has been named National Get Outdoors Day, and July has been designated as National Park and Recreation Month.

To mark National Trails Day, visitors may choose to experience the spectacular Teton landscape on foot, bicycle or rollerblades by traveling the park’s new multi-use pathway from Dornan’s to the South Jenny Lake area. This 8-mile-long paved pathway offers the chance to breath fresh air, get physical exercise, and soak in the beauty of the park’s dramatic scenery and wildlife. Because the pathway traverses a wildlife-rich corridor, special regulations apply. Visitors should stop and read the posted informational signs before proceeding along this route, and observe safety precautions such as: wear helmets and sunscreen; ride single file and maintain bicycle speeds that are reasonable to the numbers of other pathway users; be bear aware; and keep a safe distance from all wildlife. Pets are not allowed on the multi-use pathway and this route is closed from sunset to sunrise to protect park animals.

In addition to the new paved pathway, Grand Teton National Park boasts over 250 miles of hiking trails that are scattered throughout the Teton canyons and peaks, as well as across the valley floor. The extensive network of hiking trails offers a variety of opportunities to experience the geology and natural resources of the park. Many park trails are gradually becoming snow-free, and they offer access to the park’s ruggedly beautiful backcountry. Visitors are advised to stop at a park visitor center or ranger station to get information about park trails, their current conditions, and safety precautions to consider.

Numerous ranger-led activities are now underway in Grand Teton; a list is available in the park’s newspaper, Teewinot, which is available at visitor centers and entrance stations or online at For National Trails Day, visitors may join the ranger-led Taggart Lake Hike to explore a moderately difficult trail and learn about fire ecology, early season wildflowers, and native wildlife; this ranger-led activity begins at 9 a.m. from the Taggart Lake parking area, three miles north of the Moose Entrance Station. Visitors may also elect to take a ranger-led walk along the Snake River to the Murie Ranch and discover how the modern-day conservation movement was launched by Olaus, Mardy, Adolph and Louise Murie from their home in Grand Teton National Park. This activity begins at 10 a.m. from the Craig Thomas Discovery and Visitor Center in Moose.

There are limitless activities available in Grand Teton National Park—with rangers, as well as with authorized park concessioners who operate scenic float trips on the Snake River, cruises on Jackson Lake, horseback rides, guided fishing trips, and more.

Grand Teton National Park joins other national parks across the country in welcoming visitors and neighbors to the great American outdoors this summer. National parks provide some of the best and most cost effective vacation opportunities—special places through which lasting family memories are made.