Ranger Programs

Park rangers provide a wide variety of activities for park visitors including hikes, slide shows, children's activities and wildlife viewing. While most programs are offered during the busy summer season, fall brings the wildlife caravan, winter a snowshoe walk, and spring the opportunity to watch the sage grouse strut. Programs that are wheelchair accessible are indicated as "accessible" below.

Check at a visitor center to learn about special programs or check the website's event calendar. For more information about program schedules download the park newspaper.

Spring Programs
Summer Programs
Autumn Programs
Winter Programs



 
Junior Ranger Program

Junior Ranger Program

Summer Programs
June 3 - September 7, 2015 (unless otherwise noted)

A variety of ranger-led activities take place throughout the park during the summer season. Summer programs begin in early June and last through Labor Day weekend. Join a ranger to learn about the wild communities, history and geology of the park. Regularly scheduled programs are described below, but districts also offer special programs throughout the summer. Check at a visitor center for upcoming special programs. Summer programs are grouped by park district. For more detailed information about these activities, please view the park newspaper or inquire at a visitor center.

Moose District

Taggart Lake Hike
Hike with a ranger along the scenic Taggart Lake Trail, where a variety of stories unfold. The hike leaves from the Taggart Lake Trailhead at 9 am. Be prepared for a 3-mile (1.5 miles guided), 2-hour long hike. Topics vary. Offered daily. (June 8 to Sept. 7)

Map Chat (accessible)
Join a ranger around the raised-relief map in the Craig Thomas Discovery & Visitor Center in Moose hear about the stories behind the scenery. Learn about the wildlife that calls this place home and the forces that shaped this landscape during a 30 minute presentation. Topics vary. Wheelchair accessible. Offered daily at 10:30 am.

Nature in a Nutshell (accessible)
Join a ranger in the courtyard of the Craig Thomas Discovery & Visitor Center in Moose for a 20 minute talk to learn about the park's natural world. Topics are the ranger's choice. Wheelchair accessible. Offered Sunday, Tuesday, Friday and Saturday at 1:00 pm.

Your Park Your Legacy
What's your legacy? The Murie legacy speaks to the power of passion and commitment to protecting wild places. Through conversation on a walk to the Murie Ranch, learn about the Muries and consider the possibilities for your own legacy. Roundtrip Distance: 1.5 miles. Difficulty: Easy. Offered: Monday, Wednesday and Thursday. (June 15 to August 13)

A Walk into the Past
Join a ranger for a walking tour of the Menor's Ferry Historic District. Discover the history of this homestead, settlement of the valley and formation of the park. See a replica of the ferry that once crossed the Snake River. Meet at the ferry dock at 2:30 pm for a 45 minute tour. Offered daily.

Bear Safety (accessible)
Learn all about bear safety, proper food storage, bear spray and how to dispense it properly. Know the differences between black and grizzly bears and ideas on how to avoid an encounter. Wheelchair accessible. Join a ranger in the Craig Thomas Discovery and Visitor Center courtyard for a 20 minute presentation. Offered Monday and Thursday at 4:00 pm.

Twilight Talk (accessible)
Join a ranger by the campfire to learn more about one of Grand Teton's fascinating animals or park stories during this family-friendly program. Meet at the Gros Ventre amphitheater at 7:30 pm for a 45 minute long program. Offered: Friday and Sunday. (June 15 to August 16)

Jenny Lake District

Hidden Falls Hike
Join a ranger to learn about the formation of this magnificent landscape on a hike to Hidden Falls and on to a view point above Jenny Lake. This is a great family activity! To reserve your space, please obtain a token for each member of your group at the Jenny Lake Visitor Center the morning of the hike. This activity is limited to 25 on a first-come, first-served basis. Meet the ranger in front of the Jenny Lake Visitor Center at 8:30 am. We will take a shuttle boat across Jenny Lake (fee charged), and hike 0.75 miles up to the view point climbing about 300 feet. The ranger guides visitors to the view point and leaves them at 11:00 am. Offered daily.

Lakeshore Conversations (accessible)
Join a ranger for an easy walk to the shore of Jenny Lake and then engage in a conversation with other park visitors. Topics of conversation will vary. Meet the ranger at the flagpole in front of the visitor center at 10:30 am for a 30-45 minute program.Offered daily. Roundtrip distance: 400 yards. Difficulty: Easy.

Bear Safety (accessible)
Discover techniques that will help you stay safe while traveling and camping in bear country. Includes instruction in the use of bear pepper spray. Meet at the flagpole in front of the Jenny Lake Visitor Center for a 20 minute presentation at 1:30 pm, Sunday, Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.

Young Naturalist Program
Explore the natural world of Grand Teton National Park. Activities in this program are designed for children 8-12 years old, however all ages are invited to join in the fun. Children must be accompanied by at least one adult. wear play clothes and bring water, rain gear, sun screen, insect repellent and curiosity. Reservations are encouraged call the visitor center at 307-739-3392. Meet at the flagpole in front of the visitor center for a 1.5 hour program at 1:30 pm on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. (June 8 to August 21)

Colter Bay District

Coffee with a Ranger (accessible)
Join a ranger for questions, trip planning and dialog over morning coffee. Meet on the visitor front porch at 7 am for a 1 hr. conversation. Offered: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.

Morning on the Back Deck (accessible)
Look for wildlife in a wetlands community. A ranger is on hand with a spotting scope for your viewing pleasure and to answer questions. All visitors are invited. Join the ranger on the back deck of the Jackson Lake Lodge at 9 am for a 1 hour program. Offered Daily.

Tipi Demo (accessible)
Join a ranger to learn about the structure the plains Indians called home. Meet in the Colter Bay amphitheater at 9 am for 45 minute demonstration on Wednesdays.

Teton Highlights (accessible)
Wondering what to see and do in the park? Join a ranger for some great ideas. Meet the ranger at the visitor center auditorium for 30 minutes at 10 am, daily.

Teton Topics (accessible)
Gain insight into the stories behind the scenery, including geology, wildlife, history and other topics. Meet the ranger at the visitor center back deck for 30 minutes at 11 am, Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday.

Celebrating National Parks (accessible)
2016 marks the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service. Join a conversation about the history and values of national parks. Meet on the visitor center auditorium at 11 am for 30 minutes on Sunday, Tuesday and Friday.

Swan Lake Hike
Hike through forest and wetland communities and learn about the plants and animals living in the park. Meet the ranger at the visitor center flagpole. Offered daily, meet at 1 pm at the visitor center flagpole. The programs lasts 3 hours, distance 3 miles, difficulty easy.

Indian Arts & Culture (accessible)
Join a ranger for an in-depth look at a facet of American Indian art and culture. Meet in the Colter Bay Visitor Center auditorium at 1:30 pm for 45 minutes on Tuesday.

Bear Safety (accessible)
Discover techniques that will help you stay safe while traveling and camping in bear country. Including instruction in the use of bear pepper spray. Meet on the visitor center back deck at 4 pm for a 30 minute program, Sunday, Wednesday and Friday.

Grand Teton Kids (accessible)
Kids connect to some of the wonders of Grand Teton on a short interactive program. Meet on the visitor center back deck at 4 pm for a 45 minute program, Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.

Early Evening (accessible)
Gather at the Colter Bay Amphitheater for a traditional ranger talk at 7 pm for 45 minutes, daily. The program will move to the auditorium in case of bad weather. Families are welcome. Topics posted at various locations. (June 12 - Sept. 7)

Campfire Program (accessible)
Join a ranger for a photo-illustrated talk about an exciting aspect of Grand Teton National Park at 9 pm for a 45 minute program. Offered daily (expect Wednesday - Family Night Video). Topics posted at various locations. In the event of inclement weather, the program will be held in the Colter Bay auditorium. Families are welcome. Topics posted at various locations. (June 12 - Sept. 7)

Family Video Night (accessible)
Gather at the Colter Bay Visitor Center auditorium for a park-related video feature at 9 pm for 45 minutes on Wednesday. (June 17 - Sept. 2)

Laurance S. Rockefeller Preserve

Explore the Preserve Hike
Open your senses and immerse yourself in the pristine setting of the Preserve. Join a ranger at 9:15 am for 2.5 hrs. for a three-mile hike (1.5 miles guided) along the Lake Creek Trail through forest and meadows to the shore of Phelps Lake offering dramatic views of the Teton Range. Reservations required 307-739-3654. Group size 10. Offered daily.

Your Park Your Views (accessible)
Join with other park visitors and a ranger in a discussion of current issues affecting our national parks. Bring your views, questions and concerns to share with the group. Program may be inside due to the weather or may involve a short stroll. Topics announced weekly at the Preserve Center. Roundtrip distance: Minimal walking required. Difficulty: easy. Meet on the porch at 9:30 am for a 30 minute program. Offered: Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. June 16 to August 8.

Critter Chat (accessible)
Every day a different animal or insect is the star of this fun, family friendly program. Meet on the porch of the Preserve Center at 3:30 pm for 30 minutes. Every day but Friday.

Bear Safety (accessible)
Discover techniques that will help you stay safe while traveling and camping in bear country. Including instruction in the use of bear pepper spray. Meet on the Porch of the Preserve Center at 3:30 pm for a 30 minute demonstration, every Friday.

Nature Explorer's Backpack
Children discover the wonders of the natural world using the tools provided in the Nature Explorer's Backpack. After a brief orientation by a ranger, each child receives a journal full of activities to guide them as they explore the Preserve trails with their family. The backpacks are available for checkout at the Preserve Center desk every day starting at 9:00 am and need to be returned by 5:00 pm that day. Recommended for children ages 6-12. Backpacks are limited, one per family please.

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Hikers near Taggart Lake in Fall

Hikers near Taggart Lake in Fall

Autumn Programs
September 8-27, 2015 (check program details below)

Moose District

Map Chat (accessible)
Join a ranger around the raised-relief map in the Craig Thomas Discovery & Visitor Center in Moose to hear about the stories behind the scenery. Learn about the wildlife that calls this place home and the forces that shaped this landscape during a 30 minute presentation at 11:30 am, daily, Sept. 8-27.

Autumn Stroll
Hike with a ranger along the scenic trail to Taggart Lake, where a variety of stories unfold. Topics vary. Bring water, binoculars, camera, sunscreen, and rain gear. ROUNDTRIP DISTANCE: 3 miles (1.5 miles guided). DIFFICULTY: Moderate. Meet at the Taggart Lake Trailhead at 1:30 pm for a 2.5 hour program, daily, Sept. 8-27.

Bear Safety (accessible)
Discover techniques that will help you stay safe while traveling and camping in bear country. Includes instruction in the use of bear pepper spray. Meet in the Craig Thomas Discovery & VC courtyard at 1 pm for a 30 minute program on Wednesdays, Sept. 9-23.

Wildlife Caravan
Travel with a ranger to look for wildlife during the early evening; the best viewing time. Be prepared to drive or ride to multiple locations. Dress warmly and bring binoculars or spotting scopes. Limited to 10 vehicles. Reservations are required. Please call the Craig Thomas Discovery and Visitor Center, (307) 739-3399, or make reservations in person. Ride sharing will be strongly encouraged. Meet at the Craig Thomas Discovery & Visitor Center in Moose at 5 pm. The tour lasts 3 hours, daily, Sept. 8-27.

Jenny Lake District

Hidden Falls Hike
Learn about the formation of this magnificent landscape on a hike to Hidden Falls and on to a viewpoint above Jenny Lake. This is a great activity for families! To reserve your space, please obtain a token for each member of your group at the Jenny Lake Visitor Center the morning of the hike. This activity is limited to 25 on a first-come, first-served basis. We will take the shuttle boat across Jenny Lake. Boat fares listed above. ROUNDTRIP HIKE DISTANCE: 2 miles. DIFFICULTY: Moderate uphill. Meet at the Jenny Lake Visitor Center flagpole at 10 am for a 2.5 hour program, daily Sept. 8-23.

Lakeshore Conversations (accessible)
Join a ranger for an easy walk to the shore of Jenny Lake and then engage in a conversation with other park visitors. Topics of conversation will vary. ROUNDTRIP DISTANCE: 400 yards. DIFFICULTY: Easy. Meet at the Jenny Lake Visitor Center flagpole. Roundtrip distance 400 yards, Easy. Daily at 11 am 30-45 minutes, Sept. 8-23.

Bear Safety (accessible)
Discover techniques that will help you stay safe while traveling and camping in bear country. Includes instruction in the use of bear pepper spray. Meet at the Jenny Lake Visitor Center flagpole at 1:30 pm for a 30 minute program Sunday, Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday, Sept. 8-22.

Naturalist's Choice
Join a ranger at 1:30 pm for a 30 minute exploration of a topic about which they are passionate. This could be an easy walk, a talk or a discussion on a variety of park topics. ROUNDTRIP DISTANCE: no more than 1 mile. DIFFICULTY: Easy. Meet at the Jenny Lake Visitor Center flagpole, Monday, Wednesday and Friday; Sept. 9-23.

Colter Bay District

Teton Highlights (accessible)
Wondering what to see and do in the park? Join a ranger for some great ideas. Meet on the Colter Bay Visitor Center auditorium at 11 am for a 30 minute presentation daily; Sept. 8-26.

Teton Topics (accessible)
This program gives insight to the stories behind the scenery, including geology, wildlife, history and other topics. Join the ranger in the Colter Bay Visitor Center auditorium, 3 pm for a 30 minute program, Sunday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday; Sept. 8-26.

Bear Safety (accessible)
Discover techniques that will help you stay safe while traveling and camping in bear country. Includes instruction in the use of bear pepper spray. Meet at the Colter Bay Visitor Center back deck at 3 pm for a 30 minute program Monday and Wednesday; Sept. 8-26.

Oxbow Bend Wildlife Watch (accessible)
Join a ranger at the Oxbow Bend Overlook for an evening wildlife watch. Stop by anytime between 6:00 pm and 7:30 pm to scan the area for birdlife and large mammals. Offered daily; Sept. 8-26.

Laurance S. Rockefeller Preserve

Explore the Preserve Hike
Open your senses and immerse yourself in the pristine setting of the Preserve. Join a ranger at 9:30 am for a three mile hike lasting 2.5 hours along the Lake Creek Trail through forest and meadows to the shore of Phelps Lake offering dramatic views of the Teton Range. Reservations required (307) 739-3654. Group size limited to 10. Offered daily; Sept. 8-20

Critter Chat (accessible)
Every day a different animal or insect is the star of this fun, family friendly program. Please allow extra travel time as parking lot is typically full during this part of the day. ROUND TRIP DISTANCE: Minimal walking required. DIFFICULTY: Easy. Meet at the Laurance S. Rockefeller Preserve Center porch at 3:30 pm for 30 minutes; Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday; Sept. 8-17.

Bear Safety (accessible)
Discover techniques that will help you stay safe while traveling and camping in bear country. Includes instruction in the use of bear pepper spray. Please allow extra travel time as the parking lot is typically full during this part of the day. Meet at the Laurance S. Rockefeller Preserve Center front porch at 3:30 pm for a 30 minute program on Sunday, Friday and Saturday; Sept. 11-20.

Nature Explorer's Backpack
Children discover the wonders of the natural world using the tools provided in the Nature Explorer's Backpack. After a brief orientation by a ranger, each child receives a journal full of activities to guide them as they explore the Preserve trails with their family. The backpacks are available for checkout at the Preserve Center desk every day starting at 10:00 am and need to be returned by 5:00 pm that day. Recommended for children ages 6-12. Backpacks are limited, one per family please.

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Visitors on Snowshoe Hike

Visitors on ranger-lead snowshoe hike near the Snake River.

Winter Programs
December 2014 - March 2015

Join a ranger for an educational and fun hike through the snow. Rangers offer guided snowshoe hikes from the Taggart Lake Trailhead. Programs begin on December 26th and run through March 14, 2015, conditions permitting. Reservations are required, call (307) 739-3399 for more details and to make reservations. Reservations are accepted beginning on December 1, 2014. Please wear appropriate winter clothing (e.g. hat, gloves, snow/wind pants, boots, etc.) and don't forget your sunscreen and sunglasses. Snowshoes are available from the Grand Teton Association for a suggested donation of $5.

Programs are offered Tuesday, Friday and Saturday at 1:30 p.m. and last two hours, ending at 3:30 p.m.

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Sage Grouse Display

Male sage grouse displaying during spring strut.

Spring Programs
April 2015

Grouse Strut
The ranger-led spring Grouse Strut program will be offered the last three weekends of April (4/11-12, 4/18-19, and 4/25-26). Join us for an early morning excursion to watch these remarkable birds attract a mate. Reservations are required and ride-sharing is encouraged. Please call 307-739-3399 for more information and to make reservations. Participants will meet the ranger at the Craig Thomas Discovery and Visitor Center at 5:30 am. Plan to be outside at least one hour, so dress warmly.

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