12 Easy Grand Teton Hikes with Tweens and Teens

    Looking to get immersed in the natural beauty of Grand Teton along one of its many trails, but have concerns about their varying lengths, difficulties, dangers, and other factors? Fear not! We’ve hand-picked a dozen trails that’ll not only showcase some of the best sights and sounds that Grand Teton has to offer, but will also be easier for your crew (and yourself) to trek across. Add these hikes to your itinerary or check out our suggested 3-day itinerary and 15 tips for visiting Grand Teton National Park.

    Lunch Tree Hill

    Looking for a picnic with a view? Why not at the end of a short trail? Only about half a mile long, Lunch Tree Hill Loop Trail takes hikers on a round-trip to the top of a hill with lovely views of Willow Flats and the Teton Range. Follow the signs from Jackson Lake Lodge and you’ll be on your way to some of the more spectacular views in the valley (hopefully with lunch in tow).  

    Lakeshore

    Next up on the easier side of trails across Yellowstone is Lakeshore Trail, a round-trip, 2-mile trail with truly majestic views of Jackson Lake and the Teton Range. Starting from the Colter Bay Visitor Center, follow signs for the Lakeshore Trail and it’ll take you and your kids through a forested area and along the shore of Jackson Lake. A bridge along the trail connects to a small island from the mainland to some of the best views in all of Yellowstone.  

    Christian Pond Loop

    The Christian Ponds loop takes hikers through a variety of habitats across a 3.3-mile loop. Starting from Jackson Lake Lodge, the trail loops the pond and takes visitors through a marsh habitat, then climbs a forested ridge, presenting views of the Teton Range. The trail often makes for excellent opportunities for wildlife viewing, as well as spotting a variety of wildflowers in the spring and summer.

    String Lake and Leigh Lake

    String Lake Trail is a 4.4 mile heavily trafficked loop trail near the Jenny Lake scenic loop drive. Not far from the start of the trailhead you’ll find lovely views of Mt.Moran, the fourth highest mountain in Grand Teton National Park. Shortly after that is where you can find a branching path for the Leigh Lake trailhead. Said trail is an out-and-back path stretching an additional 3.7 miles and features views of the Jackson Hole valley.  

    Polecat Creek Loop

    Running roughly 2.5 miles, the Polecat Creek Loop makes for an easy trail that loops around and takes you through forests, meadows, and wetlands. The trail begins at the far end of a parking lot behind the nearby general store, splitting in two directions. An optional split within the trail that you’ll come to from either side can take you to see Huckleberry Hot Springs.  

    Jenny Lake Loop

    Though this trail might sound somewhat daunting at 7.6 miles round-trip, the scenic locales it manages to pack into said stretch will keep the total distance off your mind. From Cascade Canyon, the Cathedral Group, and Jenny Lake proper, this loop tantalizes in its offerings before even presenting additional branching options at a junction to Hidden Falls and Inspiration Point. Wildlife watching opportunities are plentiful for a variety of flora and fauna alike, from beavers to summer sunflowers.  TIP: Pay to take the shuttle boat across the lake to save a couple of miles walking round trip.

    Flagg Canyon

    Flagg Canyon Trail is an out and back trail that spans a distance about twice as long as Polecat Creek, but don’t let that deter you. Access can be found on the northeast side of the previously mentioned trail and will guide you via woods along the Snake River and through Flagg Canyon, with ample views of the basalt-lined canyon. Be cautious, however, as bears are known to occasionally be spotted in the area.  

    Taggart Lake

    The easiest and most direct route to Taggart Lake, Taggart Lake Trailhead goes on for about 3.3 miles along an out-and-back trail with staggering views of Grand Teton lording over the sagebrush flat. An optional split in the trail can take you to Bradley Lake, but otherwise keep left on your way to the lakeshore. Horses are also often spotted traversing the trail and can be used along it, should you have any.  

    Menors Ferry District

     If you’re looking more for human history within the park, here’s where you’ll find it. Doubling as a self-guided tour, you’ll find sites along the .4 mile trail such as Menor’s cabin, the old general store, Menor’s Ferry, and a storage shed with a handful of wagons and coaches from the homesteading era.  

    Lake Creek – Woodland

    From Lake Creek to the shores of Phelps Lake, this easy, 3-mile loop trail begins at the Laurence S. Rockefeller Preserve and twists through the surrounding forest and along the banks of Lake Creek. Once reaching Phelps lake itself, you’ll see it open up to reveal the lake and views into Death Canyon, from which you can Follow the Woodland Trail to head back to the beginning of the trail.  

    Cunningham Cabin Loop

    Another short trail with more human-centric history around it, Cunningham Cabin Loop is a half-mile stretch throughout old homestead territory and features the eponymous Cabin in the heart of Jackson Hole. Along with panoramic views of the Tetons in the background, you’ll find some fading, splintering paths that allow you to also see the former sites of the old ranch house, barn, shed, and other buildings. Though there’s not exactly much left to be seen, it’ll give your kids a bit more of an idea of what frontier living might’ve looked like. Access this short, easy hike located approximately 12.6 miles north of Moose Junction or 5.4 miles south of Moran Junction on Highway 191.   

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    Ryan Jorgensen

    In addition to travel, Ryan enjoys watching baseball, reading about history, and studying conversational Japanese. His eventual travel goals include Rome, an ancient Shinto temple, and all 30 MLB stadiums.