The plan today is to drive to Driggs, Idaho from our camp at Falls Campground. I was expecting to see the Grand Tetons from the western side and call it a day. My experience of traveling into National Parks, be it beautiful, is overwhelming because of the traffic and number of people who also want to visit a national landmark.
I decided to take Jagger and we left early. I was pretty sure the hour long drive and visit would take most of the day. Just the drive alone was worth the experience for me. We got out of our camp, which while quiet, doesn’t have much to do locally and we have been here several days now.
Driving through Victor, I continued to watch for that great view of the Grand Tetons. Didn’t happen, so I continued on down the road to Driggs.
Still the view didn’t materialize. There were several roads I could have taken to the Northeast, but I didn’t have a good feeling about them producing anything better than what I could already see.
At this point I made the decision to drive into the Grand Tetons National Park, but it was at least another forty-five minute drive. I didn’t have much for breakfast this morning and it was still a little early for lunch. I do know that I don’t want to arrive at the park hungry. I’ve never been there before and didn’t know what would be available or the cost.
I pulled over and Googled restaurants. Provisions Restaurant popped up with great reviews, so finding some trees about a half a block away, I parked the Workhorse, left Jagger and headed on foot to the restaurant for a late breakfast. It turned out to be a nice place for atmosphere, food and the service was adequate.
After my late breakfast I saw there was a Farmer’s Market across the street. I always enjoy strolling through a small town farmers’ market. Today was no exception. I found a vendor selling homemade huckleberry jelly, snatching up a jar. After walking through the small market, I headed back to the truck and Jagger, who was waiting patiently inside. I climbed aboard and we took off for the Wyoming border.
Grand Tetons Experience
When we arrive at the Granite Canyon entrance (seems to be the “back door”) it was still before noon (map:Grand Tetons National Park). I was surprised that no one was waiting in line to enter. I chatted briefly with the ranger after showing my America the Beautiful Senior Pass, then proceeded free of charge.
Note: if you’re 62 or older and would like to purchase the pass for $10, you better get one soon. Congress has already passed the increase for the one time price to $80. I am unable to find when they will implement the change online, but I’m sure it will be soon (posted 12/2016).
The traffic was light, but it is at the end of the season and there are fires burning near the South Entrance to Yellowstone just North of here. We start our tour, which begins on a paved road in need of repair in some places. At one point we go over a bridge that only allows one car at a time. Jagger and I stopped at several viewpoints taking photos.
Driving north on the highway we pass more spectacular views. Not just the Tetons, but beautiful meadows and valleys. There also were several lakes.
My only disappointment is the many trails we can’t go on today. Why?
- Jagger’s Aggression and limited dog access.
- We are only here for the day.
- There is at least a week worth of things to explore, even if items #1 and #2 weren’t persistent. (note to self – stay closer to the park next time)
Okay enough negativity, I am thankful I have the opportunity to see the park and stop occasionally to take pictures and enjoy the views. I am also thankful for the company of Jagger to share the adventure with me.
Driving through the Jenny Lake Lodge area guess what we found? All of the tourists. They were all seem to be at the lodge and parking was non existent, especially for size of the Workhorse. Of course it is getting later in the day too. We continued on and found a nice overview and stopped for a snack. It’s now getting later in the day.
After our snack, we continue on our trek, winding around the park until, there it is, the Visitor Center. I’m able to find a spot to park and I leave Jagger in the truck. Inside I wandered around looking at the displays and pick up a few souvenirs for my Grandchildren. It’s a very nice visitor center. Then I head back to the truck.
Jagger and I are ready to call it a day. I choose to drive back to our camp in Idaho through Jackson Hole, just to see it and say I’ve been there. When we pull into town it’s very busy as I expect. We are just passing through and it doesn’t take too long for the experience.
Arriving back at camp we relax, go on a walk in our campground and call it a day. Tomorrow is chore day and we will drive into Idaho Falls. See you then.
More Photos: Grand Tetons