Hit the Trail with Landmark: Jackson, Wyoming

Planning a trip to Jackson? We put together a list of our favorite excursions and travel tips that guarantee an unforgettable trip to Jackson Hole and nearby Grand Teton National Park. Whether you’re a serious hiker, up for a swim in a glacial lake, or love a gondola ride with great food, Jackson and the surrounding landscape is a must-visit.

Hike Unforgettable Trails

Grand Teton National Park is located just north of Jackson, WY. Home to pristine lakes and alpine terrain, Grand Teton is one of the most breathtaking and photographed parks in the country.

The park’s most popular hike is to Hidden Falls and Inspiration Point. The easy 1.8-mile hike with a mild 550 feet elevation gain ends with incredible views of Jenny Lake, Cascade Canyon, the Cathedral Group (Mount Owen, Teewinot, Grand Teton), and the entire Jackson Hole Valley.

The best way to get to the trailhead is to take the Jenny Lake shuttle boat to the trailhead for Cascade Canyon and Inspiration Point. If you decide to go, arrive early in the morning. Parking at the dock fills up fast. If you prefer to skip the ferry, you can walk the lake's perimeter along the South Jenny Lake Loop Trail. This loop adds roughly three miles to your hike but is a beautiful way to take in the views. (And don’t forget to pop by the Jenny Lake Store where you’ll find hiking necessities, trail snacks, and Landmark tees, posters, and hats!)

If you’re looking for a challenge, we recommend the day hike from Hanging Canyon to Lake of the Crags. This hike isn’t for the faint of heart, but you’ll experience peaceful solitude and incredible views! The three-mile hike is straight uphill with an elevation gain of 3,000 vertical feet and will likely take you the full day. Your experience and photos will be among the best in Wyoming!

To get to the trailhead, take the Jenny Lake shuttle boat across Jenny Lake and follow the signs leading to North String Lake. Walk approximately ten minutes until you cross two bridges and see an unmarked trailhead with a small circle of rocks. This denotes the start of your hike up Hanging Canyon. This hidden trail is easy to miss and our best suggestion is to carefully follow the stream uphill (the stream is runoff from Lake of the Crags). 

This demanding trail is surrounded by wildflowers and active wildlife throughout summer and fall. At the end of your hike, you’ll arrive at Lake of the Crags: arguably one of the most beautiful and secluded lakes in the Grand Teton mountain range.

Float Down the Stream

If you’re looking for a more relaxed afternoon, we recommend swimming in String Lake. This narrow lake with plenty of beach access is a great spot for paddle boarding, lakeside picnicking, and floating with a beverage in hand. You can rent inflatable paddle boards in Jackson or bring your own pool floats for a chill day on the water.

To get to String Lake, drive the Teton Park Road and turn at the North Jenny Lake Junction. Like most attractions in the park, the lake gets busy. We recommend arriving early in the morning or late in the afternoon so you can beat the crowds and find a nearby parking spot.

Ride the Tram

Another relaxing outing is the Jackson Hole Mountain Resort tram to the top of Rendezvous Mountain. When you reach the summit, you’ll have incredible 360-degree views of the Tetons and Jackson Hole Valley. One of our favorite mountaintop stops is for waffles at Corbet’s Cabin. Waffles just taste better at 10,450 feet– the “Top of the World!”

After indulging in gourmet waffles, we like to take the Teton Village Wildflower Trail to the gondola summit. This downhill hike is a great way to take in the mountaintop views and wildflowers before riding the gondola down the mountain. Plus, the gondola trip down is no extra charge when you pay to ride the tram up!

Snap Unique Photos

For unique photo ops and wildlife sighting opportunities, we love Schwabacher Landing at sunrise. Schwabacher Landing is especially beautiful at sunrise as the water reflects the jagged Teton peaks and trees. Early in the morning, you’ll likely see moose and elk grazing by the water. You may even see bears (so keep an eye out and always respect the wildlife).

If you hike north from the parking lot 350 yards along a small channel of the Snake River, you’ll find a large beaver dam. The beavers are busy building and swimming in the shallow waters at dawn and dusk.

To get to Schwabacher Landing, simply drive the Grand Teton Scenic Loop. Schwabacher Landing Road is clearly marked and leads to a large parking lot.

Grab Some Great Food

One of our favorite breakfast spots in Jackson is Persephone Bakery Cafe. There’s nothing quite like a solid cup of coffee and warm pastry before a big hike. We love to end our day at Persephone’s so we can snag a couple of pastries to fuel our early starts the following day!

Another favorite stop is Cutty’s Bar and Grill. Locals recommended Cutty’s for a solid Philly cheesesteak, Jersey-shore-style pizza, and beer on tap. After a long hike or afternoon on the water, Cutty’s is a relaxed dive bar where you can eat and chat like a local.

Finally, no food recommendation would be complete without Wyoming's oldest brew pub: Snake River Brewing Co. This award-winning craft brewery is a favorite among locals and visitors. Grab a beer and play a few rounds of cornhole on the lawn before ordering some pub fare to snack and sip among friends!

Do a Little Shopping

While you’re in town, be sure to check out Jackson’s many locally-owned shops. MADE is one of our favorites in downtown Jackson Hole. Their curated selection includes handmade items from more than 360 American artists. We’re excited that The Landmark Project is a part of that collection. So if you snag one of our hats or Smokey Bear puzzles, be sure to snap a photo and tag us!  

Another favorite shop is the Great Outdoor Shop in nearby Pinedale. You can find everything from books and maps to apparel and equipment rentals. They also carry a variety of Landmark Project products in case you wanted a Grand Teton tee, poster, pin, or beanie!

Stop by The National Museum and National Elk Refuge

The National Museum of Wildlife Art is definitely worth a visit. The museum features more than 550 artists and over 5,000 cataloged animal art pieces. From life-size sculptures on their outdoor trail to local artifacts and famous oils on canvas, the Wildlife Art Museum is a relaxing way to spend a couple of hours– especially after a long hike!

Another must-stop is the National Elk Refuge. Filled with informative displays about the Tetons and Yellowstone, the refuge is surrounded by wetlands and grasslands that allow year-round wildlife observation. On Fridays from noon-2:00 pm, the raptor center does “Feathered Fridays” with live birds and discussions about their conservation efforts.

Looks like it’s time to pack your bags and head to Jackson, WY! With some of the best hikes, food, and day trips in the country, a trip to Jackson Hole and Grand Teton National Park is forever on our must-visit list. When you go, give us a shout. We’d love to see your photos and hear your stories from one of America’s wildest places!

Grand Teton National Park Tee
Grand Teton National Park Tee

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