Although the snow and skiing is what Jackson Hole, Wyoming is famous for, there are many things for families to do there in the summer, including swimming, hiking, fishing, rafting, horseback riding and biking. Many families first visit Jackson Hole for the winter sports, but most people return there because there is no limit to the activities they can participate in all year long.
Jackson Hole has much more to offer than simply skiing. Visitors can enjoy a variety of outdoor activities, as well as indoor activities at the many wonderful local restaurants, shops and Jackson Hole hotels. Here are some of the most popular summer activities for families.
Jackson Hole has 4,000 miles of hiking trails that go from the bottom of the canyons to the tops of the mountains. With 14 million acres of public land, there is terrain for every level of hiker or backpacker.
- Goodwin Lake: This is a popular day hike because it’s close to Jackson. Do a half-day outing at the lake, or take the trail as it continues southeast to Cache Peak, and into the Gros Ventre Range.
- Hidden fall and Cascade Canyon: If you are looking for a low impact family-friendly hike, this is the trail for you. It starts at Jenny Lake in the Grand Teton National Park. You can also hike the relatively flat two-mile trail around the southern end of Jenny Lake.
- Teton Crest Trail: This trail offers a multi-day backpacking adventure that runs from south to north right through the Tetons. The scenic views are beautiful as you hike through the Paintbrush Divide, Hurricane Pass, Lake Solitude and Marion Lake.
The Snake River with its calm waters, provides the perfect setting to take in the scenic views and see wildlife. The Grand Teton National Park section of the Snake River provides stunning views of the Tetons. The South Park section winds past several private ranches, as well as Bureau of Land Management (BLM) land.
The area in and around Jackson Hole offers road biking, snow biking and single track mountain biking. The mountains provides dirt and paved roads, as well as two-track paths and single-track trails that wind through the park. Trail maps are available at most bicycle shops in Jackson Hole.
- Cruiser Rides: This dirt road winds along the east side of the National Elk Refuge offering views of the Grand Tetons and the Gros Ventre Range.
- Downhill Bike Trails: There are several trails on Teton Pass to choose from, complete with lots of jumps and other features. You can visit a local bike shop for directions and recommendations.
- Cross Country Trails: Cache Creek has a large network of trails and provides various single track rides. If you want to bring the kids, try the Cache Creek dirt road. If you want a more challenging ride, try the Farrins switchbacks.
- Snow Biking: Snow bikes have wide, studded tires that enable riders to cruise on the packed or groomed winter trails. The makes it easy to access the areas usually only viewable on snowshoes or cross country skis. Tours and rentals are also available.
Horseback riding is a great way to get a feel for what life was like in the Old West. There are local trails and private ranches, as well as backcountry rides available. Local outfitters provide a variety of riding choices, including hourly, half day or full day – and even rides that last several days. The rental prices depend on the length of the ride.
No matter what season it is, you can find something fun to do in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. The mountains, rivers and lakes provide the perfect backdrop for any family activity at any time of the year. Not only that, the many outfitters and shops in the area provide the equipment, maps and information you’ll need to keep your family safe, too.