Back in early 1900s, President Theodore Roosevelt became so enamored with the natural beauty, wildlife and serenity of Wyoming's great outdoors that he was inspired to protect these areas for generations to come. The end result is that today, you are able to visit these awesome untouched areas and enjoy what moved him so deeply.
Entire Road Trip: Three to five days
Start your adventure in the town of Jackson. Surrounded by scenic Jackson Hole and the majestic Teton Range, this little metropolis lets you soak up genuine cowboy culture on guest ranches, at rodeos and lots of fun at a chuckwagon cookouts or the Million Dollar Cowboy Bar. Don't miss the famed elk horn gates that lead into the town's lovely tree-shaded town square. Soak in some authentic western culture at area galleries, museums and theaters.
Culture and Commerce: Take home a little of what Roosevelt wanted to preserve. Wild By Nature Gallery has photos of wildlife and stunning nature scenes from the area.
Just 12 miles northwest on Highway 390 is Teton Village. Renowned internationally for winter sports, the area is also a mecca in summer for hiking, mountain biking, whitewater rafting, kayaking, climbing and fishing. Interpretive hikes with experienced adventure guides are also available.
Jackson to Teton Village - 12.5 miles - about 19 minutes
The majestic beauty of the Teton Range dominates Grand Teton National Park, almost overshadowing the wealth of wildlife and the area's world-class resorts. From Teton Village, go north on Highway 390/Moose-Wilson Road and travel about 9 miles to Moose and experience the serenity and beautiful views of the Tetons from the Chapel of the Transfiguration.
Teton Village to Moose – 8.6 miles – about 18 minutes
Then, go 12 miles northwest on Teton Park Road, turn into the Jenny Lake area. Jenny Lake is considered to be a major focal point in Grand Teton National Park, with many hiking trails, scenic boat rides and a quick access to the major climbing routes into the tallest peaks of the Teton Range.
Moose to Jenny Lake – 12 miles – about 18 minutes
From the Jenny Lake area, continue outdoor adventure and head north on Teton Park Road and John D. Rockefeller Jr. Parkway about 21.6 miles to the Colter Bay area on Jackson Lake. Enjoy a pleasant paddle on the intimate channels and inlets throughout the area.
Jenny Lake to Jackson Lake - 21.6 miles - about 39 minutes
Then travel 19 miles on John D. Rockefeller Jr. Parkway (Highways 191/287/89) to the south entrance of Yellowstone National Park.
Jackson Lake to South Entrance - 19 miles - about 31 minutes
Yellowstone National Park is the nation's first and finest national park, containing 2 million acres of uncommon beauty. Our best advice is to get a map of the park and pick the sites you most want to see. Take your time and remember you are creating memories that will last a lifetime. Travel times will vary greatly, depending on the amount of visitors and where wildlife chooses to make an appearance along the road.
Here is one suggested itinerary:
Proceed through the southern entrance to West Thumb Geyser Basin.
Entrance to West Thumbe Geyser Basin - 22 miles – 31 minutes to an hour
Then west along the Grand Loop to the Old Faithful Geyser Basin, where Old Faithful erupts about every 73 minutes.
West Thumb to Old Faithful - 21 miles – 32 minutes to an hour
Continue from Old Faithful Geyser Basin to Midway Geyser Basin and the Firehole Lake Drive, emerging at Fountain Paint Pots, where each thermal feature is showcased by nature as you walk along a short boardwalk.
Old Faithful to Midway Geyser Basin - 9 miles – 13 minutes to half an hour
Continue on the loop past Junction to Gibbon Falls and the Norris Geyser Basin. Travel by Roaring Mountain and Obsidian Cliff to Mammoth Hot Springs, where 500 gallons of water flow every minute from the earth to shape and feed the ever-changing terraces.
Midway to Mammoth - 22 miles – 32 minutes to an hour
Traveling east along the upper loop road you'll find breathtaking Lower Falls and Upper Falls and the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone.
Mammoth to Lower Falls - 15 miles – 25 minutes to an hour
Continue south through Hayden Valley, a lush meadow dotted with wildlife, to Yellowstone Lake, the country's largest high-altitude lake.