The main highway through the national park is US 191/89
, which follows close to the east side of the Snake River
, from Jackson north for 57 miles into Yellowstone National Park (see map
). Half way along it is joined by US 26/287 at Moran Junction
, allowing access from the east. The only other route into the park is Moose-Wilson Road
from the southwest, which leads to one of the lesser used trailheads (Granite Canyon). Although the best overall views of the mountains are from US 191/89, the main scenic drive is Teton Park Road
, running for 21 miles along the west edge of the valley, passing various lakes, trailheads, picnic areas and overlooks.
Five distinct climate zones are represented in Grand Teton National Park; highest is the Alpine tundra region above 9,000 feet, where bare granite predominates, sprinkled with patches of short grass, small wildflowers, moss and lichen, though all is hidden by snow for up to 8 months of the year. Forests cover the lower slopes, composed of spruce fir and whitebark pine at the upper elevations, with Douglas fir, lodgepole pine and limber pine beneath. Between the mountains, the flat land of the valley floor has only occasional trees and is instead covered with uniform sagebrush and grasses, habitat for antelope and bison. Flowing slowly through the valley, the Snake River creates the largest area of wetlands in the park, terrain also found around lakes and smaller streams; this is the favored location for moose and numerous smaller mammals. Finally, the lakes, rivers and ponds harbor many types of fish, which in turn help support a large and varied bird population.
and Teton Park
roads are closed in the winter, usually from the start of November to the beginning of May, though US 191/89 is open all year. NPS campgrounds and visitor centers have slightly shorter opening seasons, typically late May to early October. But many activities are still possible in the winter, from multi day cross-country skiing trips to just photographing the snowy mountains from the highway. January and February daytime temperatures peak in the 20s Fahrenheit (-5°C), dropping to zero or below at night, but rise by around 10 degrees each month until a maximum of the low 80s (ca. 28°C) is reached during July. Snow is likely in the valley any time between October and the start of May.
has a fair selection of lodging - follow the link for descriptions, map and hotel reservations. See also