• The Cathedral Group from the Teton Park Road

    Grand Teton

    National Park Wyoming

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  • Bears are active in Grand Teton

    Black and grizzly bears are roaming throughout the park--near roads, trails and in backcountry areas. Hikers and backcountry users are advised to travel in groups of three or more, make noise and carry bear spray. Visitors must stay 100 yards from bears. More »

  • Area closure in effect for trails in the Jenny Lake Area

    A temporary area closure will be in effect for several trails in the Jenny Lake area due to construction activities involving helicopter-assisted transport of heavy material. The closure will last from October 27 through October 30, and possibly longer. More »

  • Multi-use Pathway Closures

    Intermittent closures of the park Multi-use Pathway System will occur through mid-October during asphalt sealing and safety improvement work. Pathway sections will reopen as work is completed. Follow the link for a map and more information. More »

  • Moose-Wilson Road Status

    The Moose-Wilson Road between the Death Canyon Road and the Murie Center Road is currently open to all traffic. The road may re-close at any time due to wildlife activity. For current road conditions call 307-739-3682. More »

Bears Active Again in Grand Teton & the Rockefeller Parkway

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Date: March 25, 2013
Contact: Public Affairs Office, 307.739.3393

Bears are out of hibernation and active again in Grand Teton National Park and the John D. Rockefeller, Jr. Memorial Parkway. Park staff received reports of the first set of bear tracks on March 15th. These reports were in keeping with long-term data that indicates 50% of adult males bears are out of their winter dens by mid-March each year. Local residents and park visitors should be alert for the presence of bears throughout all areas of the park and parkway.  

When bears leave their winter dens, they search for any food source that will help restore fat reserves lost during hibernation. Winter-killed animals provide immediate sources of protein, and hungry bears will strongly defend this and other food sources against perceived threats. Carcasses and freshly killed animals should serve as a point of caution-a red flag to detour away from the area. As snow banks recede, bears also dig up wildflower bulbs and burrowing rodents.  

Now that bears are awake, appropriate precautions must be taken. Park visitors need to exercise good judgment, stay alert, and follow these recommended safety precautions while hiking:

  • Make noise
  • Travel in a group of three or more
  • Carry bear spray and know how to use it
  • Maintain a 100-yard distance from bears at all times  

Park visitors are reminded to never approach a bear under any circumstances. 

People should report any bear sightings or sign to the nearest visitor center or ranger station as soon as possible. Timely reporting will help park staff to provide important safety messages about bear activity to other visitors. 

Access to human food and garbage is a death sentence to a bear. When bears lose their fear of humans, they often become a nuisance and a safety concern. Park visitors are reminded to keep food, garbage and other odorous items unavailable to bears at all times by storing attractants inside vehicles, by disposing of garbage in a bear-resistant trash can or dumpster, and by keeping personal items-such as backpacks or drink containers-with them at all times, especially when they contain food or food odors.  

For further information on how to behave when hiking, camping or picnicking in bear country, read the park's newspaper, Grand Teton Guide, online at www.nps.gov/grte.

Did You Know?

Aspen tree bark close-up

Did you know that the bark on Aspen trees looks green because it contains chlorophyll? Aspen bark is photosynthetic, a process that allows a plant to make energy from the sun, and helps the tree flourish during the short growing season.