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Celebrate National Public Lands Day

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Date: September 20, 2012
Contact: Public Affairs Office, 307.739.3431

Grand Teton National Park will waive entrance fees (including commercial tour fees) on Saturday, September 29 in recognition of National Public Lands Day. National Park Service Director Jon Jarvis announced that all 397 national park sites will offer free entry in an effort to encourage individuals, families and communities to reconnect with nature and explore America's great outdoors. National Public Lands Day is also a time for individuals to volunteer their time and energy through beneficial projects. 

To help celebrate National Public Lands Day, join the National Parks Conservation Association, Jackson Hole Wildlife Foundation and Grand Teton National Park for a fence improvement project to benefit pronghorn and their unimpeded movement across the landscape. Volunteers will modify an old fence on the Elk Ranch, near the eastern boundary of the park, by replacing a lower strand of barbed wire with wildlife-friendly smooth wire. The height of the wire will also be raised to 18 inches above ground to enable pronghorn to safely crawl under. The project will run from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., however, even a half day of work will be appreciated. Volunteers should wear long pants and appropriate footwear for hiking, and bring water, sunscreen, raingear, protective sunhat and sunglasses for eye protection. For more information and to register for this volunteer project, go to www.npca.org/gtevents.  

National Public Lands Day began in 1994 with a purpose to increase awareness of the value of all public lands, to foster shared stewardship of America's national resources, and to encourage people to volunteer their time. Many people will lend a hand to help the land and spend part of National Public Lands Day volunteering on work projects across the country. More than 170,000 people are expected to plant trees, clean watersheds, remove invasive plants, replace signs, and otherwise beautify 2,000 public sites. Visit www.publiclandsday.org for more information. 

"National Public Lands Day reminds all of us of the vast and diverse nature of America's open spaces, from small neighborhood parks to large national parks, and the importance of each one," said National Park Service Director Jon Jarvis. "We are fortunate that more than 600 million acres of public land, including national parks, provide all of us with cherished places where we can go to unwind, recreate, or learn." 

National Public Lands Day is the only time that entrance fees are systematically waived on ALL public lands across America. Fees will be waived at national park units, as well as other land management sites including the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Bureau of Land Management, Bureau of Reclamation, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and U.S. Forest Service areas. In addition to National Public Lands Day, United States veterans are admitted free to national parks each year on Veteran's Day in November. 

Visitors are reminded that the fee waiver applies to entrance fees only and does not include use fees for camping or boating. For more information on fee-free opportunities in park units around the U.S., visit www.nps.gov/findapark/feefreeparks.htm.  

Did You Know?

Banded gneiss

Did you know that the granite and gneiss composing the core of the Teton Range are some of the oldest rocks in North America, but the mountains are among the youngest in the world?