Best of the Tetons


Grand Teton National Park Map


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Overview Map

This map is part of a Feature Post called: If I Had Only One Day in the TetonsIt might help any visitor optimize a trip to the Tetons, especially during the summer and fall.

Highway Turnouts and Pullouts:


Localized Maps:

String Lake Area Map

String Lake, Jenny Lake, and Old Patriarch Tree

National Elk Refuge

National Elk Refuge, Observation Platform, Miller Butte, Miller House, Town of Jackson

Ditch Creek & Ditch Creek Road
Web Science School Dec21

About four miles north of Kelly, there is an asphalt road that cuts off the East Boundary Road and goes East to the old Teton Science School. It continues as a dirt road way back into the National Forest. Some people call the paved section “Science School Road”, but it is actually called Ditch Creek Road. If you had turned West instead of East, you’d be on a two track dirt road. Some people call it the “Power Line Road”, but is also officially Ditch Creek Road. In the old days, it would have connected to Mormon Row just south of the house with the metal windmill. Currently, the Park Service has a barricade to prevent vehicle travel on roughly the last mile of the dirt road.  The old Schoolhouse would have been on the corner of the intersection at Mormon Row. Running essentially parallel to Ditch Creek Road is Ditch Creek. It runs right behind the old Science School, then travels almost due West and crosses under the East Boundary Road on its route West to Mormon Row. There’s a small bridge over it along Mormon Row—just North of the house with the steel windmill. Ditch Creek runs diagonally across the valley floor to the North end of Blacktail Butte, then under Highway 89/191 and onward to the its confluence with the Snake River—just south of Blacktail Ponds overlook.


Up the Gros Ventre

Up Gros Ventre Map

“Up The Gros Ventre” — Unexpected Treasures Exit the Park on the east side near Kelly Warm Springs and follow the Gros Ventre River. Good fishing in most places. Click the link for more photos and a lot more information!

Shadow Mountain

Shadow Mtn Map

Located on the Bridger-Teton National Forest along the East boundary of the park. Shadow Mountain is almost always good during the fall. You can get a variety of vista views of the Tetons. The road can be driven in a passenger car unless it has been raining a lot. The road is a bit rough. You can get access to Shadow Mountain by following the East Boundary Road north past the Scherwing Studio and turning right. Stay on the road and it will dump you back out near Lost Creek Ranch. The best viewing is on the southern end. Once you enter the trees at the top of the mountain, all you see is trees on either side.

Down the Canyon

Snake River Canyon Map

Follow the Snake River south out of Jackson to Alpine Junction, then along Palisades Reservoir. Eagles, deer, hawks. There are dozens and dozens of good spots to pull over and capture a terrific image or just view the scenery. A power line runs through much of the canyon, so you occasionally have to do some creative compositions to eliminate them in camera.

Snake River Canyon Winter Mountain Goats: (Click the thumbnail to the left to see a much larger map) From Jackson, go south to Hoback Junction and across the Hoback Bridge—currently under construction. Once you cross the bridge, you’ll be following the Snake River all the way. About 25 miles south of Hoback Junction, the canyon opens up into the Alpine Junction area. I refer to this spot as the “Mouth of the Canyon”. There’s a motel and quite a few businesses within the next mile. The larger map below will show the three turnouts near the mouth of the canyon where Mountain Goats are most commonly seen. The total distance from Jackson is around 35 miles. I typically drive about 85-90 miles on a trip down there, allowing for driving up and down the canyon looking for them. The small town of Alpine has a grocery store, a bar, several restaurants and a few gas stations. It is a winter haven for snowmobilers with access to the Gray’s River. An elk refuge is also located a couple of miles south of Alpine.


Mtn Goat Map

Turnouts and Viewing Areas for Mountain Goats: (Click this image to see it larger) There are three safe turnouts long the State Highway. The orange areas indicate areas where Mountain Goats are most commonly seen. (Map via The Photographer’s Ephemeris)

Up the Hoback to Granite Falls and Granite Hot Springs

Granite Falls Map

Go south out of Jackson to Hoback Junction turn left towards Pinedale. A slightly rough side road at Granite Creek takes you to Granite Falls. Fishing can be good.

Curtis Canyon

Curtis Canyon

Accessible through the National Elk Refuge, the roads lead towards Sleeping Indian and Goodwin Lake. Vista views of the valley in many places. Rough roads. Fishing in Goodwin Lake.

Togwotee Pass

Togwotee Map

Turn East at Moran Junction and follow the highway over the pass. Side roads take you to Brooks Lake and a beautiful waterfall near the highway. Grizzlies have been seen recently along the highway. From Moran, you’ll climb towards the meadows near Togwotee Mtn. Lodge. One pullout lets you look back towards the distant Teton Range. Depending on your direction of travel, this will be one of the first or last views of the Tetons. The road levels out for a few miles with a fertile, high mountain valley with a stream meandering through it. Heading east from there, you’ll begin to see the Pinnacle Peaks to the north of the road. Once you pass the road to Brook

Buffalo Valley Road to Turpin Meadows

Togwotee Map

Exit the park east of Moran. Turn south on the Buffalo Valley Road and on to Turpin Meadows. The road will eventually feed back onto the highway to Togwotee Pass. Great sunrises over the Buffalo River.

Up Cache Creek

Cache Creek Map

Popular with hardy hikers.  Dogs are allowed on this trail. The trail is located on the far East end of Jackson, the trails go on for miles and miles. Watch for deer, elk, black bears, and an occasional mountain lion.

South Park Wildlife Habitat and Elk Feed Grounds

South Park Map

Located just a few miles south of town on State land. There is one rest room and numerous parking areas.  The area is closed all winter when is hosts a fairly large herd of elk. In the summer, this is one of the better birding areas of the valley. Good for eagles, hawks, waterfowl, shorebirds, deer, and a variety of critters and birds. A bridge crosses the creek at the barns on the West end, then pick one of nature trails and head towards the river and the other ponds and wetlands. Fishing can be really good for both large and small trout. I haven’t fished it in a long time, but it used to be one of my favorite places close to home.

Swan Pond at Boyle’s Hill

Swan Pond Map

The Wyoming Game and Fish and Teton Science School maintain a swan pond a couple of miles due west of the Maverick Gas Station on the south edge of town. Captive swans are mixed in with wild swans that fly in and out daily during most of the year. There are usually lots of geese and other ducks, along with an occasional Bald Eagle, Osprey, Owls, and Hawks in the area. A great place for flying swans, usually right over your head. I go there a lot in the winter to get rid of cabin fever and usually come home with a couple of cards full of images. There can be upwards of 100 swans on some days!

Historic Maps:


This is a map from a 1942 Brochure. Click to view it much larger.
Of Interest: The town of Grovont is what we now know as Mormon Row. The road continued north to Elk, now Moose Head Ranch, then on to a location just east of the current Moran Junction. The main road through Grand Teton National Park passed through what we now know as Dornans, across the river over a steel bridge to the Chapel of the Transfiguration area, and on northward. The highway from Moose Junction to Moran Junction was not completed until 1957 or 1958. It first began to show up on travel maps in 1958.

Maps from the National Park Service’s web site:
Historic Sites Map
All Historic Structures Map
Park boundary map 1929
Park boundary map 1943
Park boundary map 1950
Park boundary map 1972

Winter Closure Maps and Info:

Superintendent’s Compendium Amendment – Road Closures and Day-use Access . This GTNP page includes some of the recent area and road closures: GTNP Superintendent’s Compendium . The Compendium has all the official rules for the park, including closure areas. The information below comes from a section of the Compendium.

Winter Closure Map

Winter Closure Map

From December 15th to April l the following areas are closed to all public entry unless authorized by written permit from the Superintendent (see map below).

a. The Snake River floodplain south along Highway 89 from the confluence of the Buffalo Fork at the Moran bridge to Ditch Creek, west along Ditch Creek to the Snake River, then west along the 4-Lazy-F fence line to Cottonwood Creek and north to the River Road, north along the River Road to the RKO Road and then NE along the Snake River to the Buffalo Fork confluence.

b. The Buffalo Fork River floodplain and the UhI Hill area defined as the following: starting section 21 (T45N, RI 13W) where the park boundary intersects the Buffalo Fork, then south along the park boundary to the intersection with the Elk Ranch Reservoir Road, then westerly along the Elk Ranch Reservoir Road to Highway 26, then north and east along Highway 26 to the park boundary in section 30 (Ti 14W, R45N), then south, east, and northeast along the park boundary to the starting point.

c. The Kelly Hill area (portions of Sections 1 and 2 in T42N, Ri 15W.)

Winter Road Closures

Winter Road Closure Map: Consult the Superintendent’s Compendium for specifics



Comments (4)

  1. Ed Clark

    Mike, this is a very well put together website.. Wonderful information & excellent photos, as well as some very helpful insight into the process of getting great shots at the Tetons..
    I would enjoy seeing your photography of your favorite shots, if
    you would care to share.. Please put me on your email list.
    Thanks again for all this great info.. You’re doing a great job..

  2. Hi Ed,
    You might want to sign up (subscribe) to the site. Just enter your email address and hit the submit button in the box near the top of right navigation bar. (On a phone, it is found below the page’s content. The daily photos on this site are usually the best few of what I saw that day, but some are pulled to the side for prints and contests. I am soooo far behind in culling and editing images! Thanks for the comments! Mike Jackson

  3. Tom Hudson

    Planning a trip there next late next week. This has been a wonderful help in planning.

  4. Dorothy

    Finally went through all the maps — thanks, they are VERY helpful. I read your notes about your great photos and can now figure out some of the areas where you captured them. This is a great web site! Thanks for keeping it up and sharing all the great things about Jackson/Grand Teton.

    However — where is “Dump road?”

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