Learn to plan like a park ranger by following our list of the Top 10 Tips you should know before visiting Grand Teton National Park this winter. Limited services and seasonal road and wildlife closures make a winter visit far different than a summer experience. Plan ahead, recreate responsibly, and help ensure this iconic landscape may be enjoyed by future generations.
1. Plan ahead, plan ahead, and did we mention...PLAN AHEAD!
Many facilities, roads, and areas are closed in the winter. Yellowstone is not accessible from the south without a guide. Visit the park winter planner at go.nps.gov/grtewinter for more information. Snowshoe hikes with a ranger require an advanced reservation, call 307-739-3399.
2. Be flexible
Have a plan A, B, C… Between full parking lots and road closures, it is best to have multiple options for visiting Grand Teton in the winter. Check the weather before coming and download the Wyoming 511 App and check go.nps.gov/tetonroads for information about road closures. Large snowstorms are not uncommon, sometimes it’s best to postpone a drive into the park.
3. Know the snow
Fresh powder turns are not worth your life. Those venturing into the mountains should use careful snowpack assessment and good terrain choices. Before heading into the backcountry, always check Bridger-Teton Avalanche Center for current conditions at jhavalanche.org.
4. Keep the wild in wildlife
Wildlife are active in Grand Teton, including in developed areas. Don’t feed foxes, squirrels, or any other wildlife. Avoid disturbing wildlife by following winter closures for animals like bighorn sheep. Check for closures at go.nps.gov/tetonclosures.
5. It's ruff for dogs in the park...
Grand Teton is a wild place. National parks are not always the best place for your dog. In the winter you can walk your dog on a leash up to six feet on the closed Teton Park Road from Taggart to Signal Mountain. Dogs are not allowed on trails or pathways. For more in-fur-mation, visit go.nps.gov/petsingrandteton.
6. Sloooowwww dooooowwwwnnn!
Slowing down is the best way to avoid losing control on slick roads. Maintain a large following distance from other vehicles. Give snowplows plenty of space. Wildlife is active near park roads, be vigilant while driving and save a life by slowing down. Follow the nighttime speed limit of 45mph.
7. Brrrrrrring winter clothes
Do you have the winter clothing essentials? Make sure to have a coat, hat, gloves, waterproof snow pants, and waterproof boots. Layers will ensure you will be comfortable in the cold. Bring traction devices to help with icy trails.
8. Dust off those skinny skis
A portion of the Teton Park Road is groomed for cross-country skiing and skate skiing. Grooming is made possible through the support of Grand Teton National Park Foundation and a Federal Highway Administration Recreational Trails Program grant managed by the State of Wyoming. For grooming updates, call the park’s road information line at 307-739-3682.
9. It’s okay to ghost us and Leave No Trace
Dispose of trash and pet waste properly and follow Leave No Trace Principles by packing out what you bring in.
10. We’re all in this together
Visitors to Grand Teton National Park are reminded to recreate responsibly and be COVID-19 safe. Follow guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and local and state authorities, by maintaining social distancing and wearing a face covering when in crowded outside areas.