2007 06 22 – Big Trip – Day 53 – Grand Teton National Park

Colter Bay Campground, Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming. Odometer – 5064 miles

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Garnet Canyon, Grand Teton National Park

Shabbat Shalom.

I got up at 4:30am and took the RV into Grand Teton Park while Paola and the children were still sleeping in the motel. On the drive up, as the early morning light started seeping in, I saw many deer and elk by the roadside, having breakfast. I even had to stop once to let a deer cross the road. Today’s hike was a 10 mile in and out climb to Garnet Canyon. I parked at Lupine Meadows trailhead and walked up through a pine forest until the canyon opened up about 2000 feet higher. On the way up I sang and talked to myself, trying to alert bears to my presence. I guess it worked cause I didn’t encounter any. There was a strange little rooster that didn’t seem to mind me right next to him though. He had all his back feathers up and then I saw the female he was courting.

When I reached the canyon, the scenery changed from trees to an alpine meadow, with snow cover in some areas and grassy brush in others. This is supposed to be a great spot to see moose, but alas, the only animal I saw was a large type of ground squirrel. And there were a few humans too. Climbers who camped there overnight.

The canyon itself is wedged between Grand Teton and Middle Teton peaks and I continued up a bit into the saddle between the two. Not too much because it was a huge snowfield with a slope that became increasingly difficult to engage with my running shoes.

On the way back to the RV I saw a female moose (moosette? moosit?) in the forest and managed to take a picture or two. From there, back to Jackson where everyone was happy to see daddy come back. We checked out of the motel and drove to Albertson’s to do some grocery shopping. On the way we saw a carneceria (meat shop) and stopped to buy some quality beef and bison steak.

By the time we made it up to Grand Teton, it was after noon. We stopped at one of the many viewpoints along the road where some of us took a nap and then had lunch. We then continued to Jenny Lake, a beautiful little lake under the giant mountains. We pumped the children up with some sugar disguised as popsicles and then proceeded to a ferry boat that took us to the other side of Jenny. The 10 minute boat ride was a big hit with the kids.

On the western side of the lake, we walked up a half mile trail to Hidden Falls. We were sin stroller, because you are not allowed to take it on the boat, and also the trail was a 200 foot climb with narrow passages. Shir and Orr were very impressive on this hike. Although we prepared carrying options (one backpack for Paola, one set of shoulders for Hemi) they both walked and climbed most of the way. Shir was very adamant about climbing stairs without using her hands. It was very amusing watching her lift her little leg up to climb a rock stair almost as high as her waist, not willing to use her hands at all.

After the waterfall we climbed a bit more for a viewpoint of the lake and a “spot the chipmunk” session which provided laughs for all. Climbing down Ron and I had a scholarly discussion about compound words (arising from water-fall) where we found many examples of such words in the natural world.

We checked into this no-hookup campsite in the late afternoon and immediately proceeded to grill the fine meats from earlier today. The pitstop on the way to the supermarket was well worth it. Our site is at the stat of a dirt trail that leads to Jackson Lake, a huge lake here in the park. Tomorrow morning we will explore it thoroughly.

Good Night,


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