Fall is just about to … descend upon the land. (I bet you thought I was going to say fall. Silly you.) With that descent comes the annual transformation of leaves from boring green to flamboyant red, orange, and yellow. (Mother Nature, displaying obvious favoritism, decided to make fall leaves the most scenic.) So where do you view the fall leaves here in Jackson Hole? And when? We’ve got you covered.
Typically, the best time to witness the fall leaves is from late September to their peak in mid-October. If you’re lucky, they might last a little longer, but no promises. Check out this helpful link to see a progression of the fall colors in detail across the state.
Start with Grand Teton National Park. And yes, that’s a big place, so here are a few spots within the park where you can catch some fall foliage.
- Schwabacher Landing: Famous for its iconic reflection shots of the Tetons, this location also offers brilliant reflections of fall colors on the Snake River.
- Oxbow Bend: Another prime spot along the Snake River, Oxbow Bend is ideal for capturing the vibrant foliage along with the mirrored waters. You’ll probably also see plenty of wildlife.
- String Lake: String Lake is worth a visit at just about any time of year, but the beautiful aspen groves surrounding the lake offer a unique perspective of fall foliage.
Teton Pass Scenic Byway: If your idea of a great hike happens to be the kind you take in a car, the Teton Pass Scenic Byway (Wyoming Highway 22) is your kind of trip. You’ll drive through an enchanting forest of aspens and cottonwoods. Keep a lookout for numerous places to pull out and take in the views with your eyeballs or through a camera lens.
National Elk Refuge: In September, aspens surrounding the refuge start to turn golden, creating a picturesque backdrop for observing the elk. (And guess which motel happens to be right across the road? Yup, it’s Flat Creek Inn.)
Bridger-Teton National Forest: Here you’ll find miles of hiking and biking trails that wind through dense forests and open meadows, all painted with the fiery hues of fall.
Snow King Mountain: For a higher perspective, take a scenic chairlift ride to the top of Snow King Mountain. From here, you can soak in panoramic views of the valley. And yes, there are leaves, too.
Whether you choose to explore a national park, take a scenic drive, or venture into the surrounding forests, there’s no better place to see fall leaves than the Jackson Hole area. Where is your favorite spot to see fall leaves? Let us know in the comments.
Ryan Kunz is a copywriter and freelance writer who writes on a variety of topics, including media, the outdoors, and whatever else strikes his fancy. He likes fall leaves as much as the next person.
Essentials, J. (2012). Last Colors [Photograph]. https://flickr.com/photos/photography-by-jc/8055486837/in/photostream/