Boating and Water Sports in Grand Teton National Park
- Travel Tips
- Fodor's Choice
Boating and Water Sports
Water sports in Grand Teton are diverse. You can float the Snake River, which runs high and fast early in the season (May and June) and more slowly during the latter part of the summer. Canoes and kayaks dominate the smaller lakes and share the water with motorboats on the impressively large Jackson Lake. Motorboats are allowed on Jenny, Jackson, and Phelps lakes. On Jenny Lake, there's an engine limit of 10 horsepower. You can launch your boat at Colter Bay, Leek's Marina, Signal Mountain, and Spalding Bay.
If you're floating the Snake River on your own, you are required to purchase a permit ($20 per raft for the entire season, or $10 per raft for seven days). Permits are available year-round at Craig Thomas Discovery and Visitor Center and at Colter Bay, Signal Mountain, and Buffalo (near the Moran entrance) ranger stations in summer. Before you set out, check with park rangers for current conditions.
You may prefer to take one of the many guided float trips through calm-water sections of the Snake; outfitters pick you up at the float-trip parking area near Craig Thomas Discovery and Visitor Center for a 10- to 20-minute drive to upriver launch sites. Ponchos and life preservers are provided. Early-morning and evening floats are your best bets for wildlife viewing, but be sure to carry a jacket or sweater. Float season runs mid-April to December.
Colter Bay Marina. All types of services are available to boaters, including free parking for boat trailers and vehicles, free mooring, guided fishing trips, boat rentals, and fuel. On Jackson Lake, Grand Teton National Park, WY, 83013. 307/543–3100 or 800/628–9988.
Leek's Marina. Parking for boat trailers and other vehicles is available for up to three nights. There are no boat rentals, but you can get fuel, and there's free short-term docking plus a superb pizza restaurant. This marina is operated by park concessionaire Signal Mountain Lodge. U.S. 89/191/287, 6 miles north of Jackson Lake Junction, Grand Teton National Park, WY, 83013. 307/543–2831. Mid-May–late Sept.
Signal Mountain Lodge Marina. The marina rents pontoon boats, deck cruisers, motorboats, kayaks, and canoes by the hour or all day; rates start at $16 an hour for a kayak to $117 an hour for a deck cruiser. Teton Park Rd., 3 miles south of Jackson Lake Junction, Grand Teton National Park, WY, 83013. 307/543–2831. Mid-May–late Sept.
Outfitters and Expeditions
Barker-Ewing Float Trips. Travel the peaceful parts of the Snake River looking for wildlife as knowledgeable guides talk about area history, plants, and animals. Moose, WY, 83012. 307/733–1800 or 800/365–1800. www.barkerewing.com. $70. May–Sept.
Grand Teton Lodge Company. Rent motorboats, kayaks, and canoes at Colter Bay from Grand Teton Lodge Company. The company also offers scenic raft trips on the Snake River. 2 miles off U.S. 89/191/287, 5 miles north of Jackson Lake Junction, Grand Teton National Park, WY, 83013. 307/543–3100 or 800/628–9988. www.gtlc.com. Kayaks and canoes $17 per hr, motorboats $40 per hr. Late May–late Sept.
Lewis & Clark River Expeditions. Get in touch with this outfitter for an exhilarating wet-and-wild ride or a more leisurely scenic float. Jackson, WY, 83001. 307/733–4022 or 800/824–5375. www.lewisandclarkriverrafting.com. $55–$109. Mid-May–mid-Sept.
Mad River Boat Trips. Mad River leads a variety of white-water and scenic float trips, some combined with breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Jackson, WY, 83001. 307/733–6203 or 800/458–7238. www.mad-river.com. $72–$124. Mid-May–Sept.
Rendezvous River Sports. Join the stand-up paddleboard craze with help from the river rats at Rendezvous. Kayaking instruction and guided trips on area rivers and lakes are also available. The shop rents kayaks, canoes, rafts, and paddleboards. Jackson, WY, 83001. 307/733–2471. www.jacksonholekayak.com. Half-day clinic $110–$250, full-day $145–$340. Apr.–Oct.
Triangle X Float Trips. Triangle X Float Trips offers subdued river trips in Grand Teton National Park, including a sunset supper float. 307/733–5500 or 888/860–0005. www.nationalparkfloattrips.com. $60–$75. Mid-May–late Sept.
- 80 Degrees: Fodor's Helps You Find Your Best Beach Vacation Spots
- Fodor's Go List 2014: Where we are going in 2014
- World Cup Fever: Start planning your trip to Brazil!
- Fodor's 100 Hotel Awards: Check out the winners of 2013
- Weekend Getaways: Fodor's Recommends the Best Weekend Escapes in the US
- Great American Vacation: Find Your Next U.S. Trip with Fodor's