Alone. No bear spray. Limited cell signal. What have I gotten myself into?
Heaven, that’s where I’ve landed myself. A glorious piece of America’s untouched beauty. It’s the Grand Tetons National Park, one of our nation’s natural gems.
The Grand Tetons are a reminder of this rugged earth and its volatile tectonic plates resting just below, slowly waiting to show their magic in a grand way. Located just 10 miles from its famous northern neighbor, Yellowstone Nation Park, with its gurgling geysers the Old Faithful and the Grand Prismatic. Within the Grand Tetons are some of the nation’s most beautiful hikes, vantage points, waterfalls, and pristine lakes.
Hiking alone within Grand Tetons National Park rejuvenates the body and soul. However, do buy the bear spray. Bears can kill the body making that rejuvenated soul useless. I had no close encounters with the furry masses of strong jaws and paws BUT I was frequently chastised by the locals for not purchasing and risking the peril. I did however have the gift of loud but unrefined vocal cords. Possibly my journey could be a case study for bear spray vs. amateurish yelling of Roger Miller lyrics.
Back to the glorious-ness of the scenery, the mountain ranges hug your periphery like a comforting hand. With every road you wind down, Ray-Bans on, windows rolled down, wind in your hair, reckless abandon with a Hertz rental car, and classic rock station tuned in, leaves you in the present. When the Tetons are comforting you, you aren’t thinking of deadlines, your constant worries aren’t bombarding you, it’s just you and the scenery of some of nature’s finest accomplishments.
Established in 1929, Grand Tetons National Park encompasses over 310,000 acres, and within that, 40 miles of the Tetons range’s major peaks. Colorfully named ‘les trois tétons’ by a few lonely 19th century fur trappers it would be later shortened to Grand Tetons. Rising over neighboring town Jackson Hole 7,000 ft, the Grand Tetons hold some of the oldest rocks found in any National Park. Geologists have found rocks dating back to 2.7 billion years. Plus within the Tetons Range many of the thriving fauna and flora have existed since prehistoric times.
Prepare yourself for a journey into nature’s delights by visiting the Grand Tetons Nation Park website which lists a variety of activities, hiking trails, and swimming lakes. After each hike I would happily reward myself at one of the many lodge bars within the park. One of my favorites being Grand Tetons Lodge which showcases sweeping views of the Tetons through massive historic wooden windows. The friendly bartender greeting the exhausted hiker with an over-sized mug of refreshing local craft brew. Nothing like rejuvenating the weary body with alcoholic carbonated carbohydrates, am I right?
Plus, one can get lost staring through the lodge’s magnificent windows, lost in the wilderness just beyond, lost in the crags of the mountain range, lost with the bison and bears that casually wander across the view. That’s we are all looking for, just a wonderful place to be lost and that is what the Grand Tetons can offer you.
Put this national treasure on your list of must accomplish and let me know how your adventure went in the comments below! Be sure to visit the Grand Tetons National Park website before your visit.
The Bad Blonde aka Caitlin Shook has grown up in the mechanic shop world. Shook Enterprises is a south Texas automotive repair shop that focuses on the antique, classic, rare, awesome, and sometimes just plain hard to fix vehicles.
An avid fan of travel and adventure, she’s popped into every car MUSEUM and car SHOW + AUCTION she can along the way.
She began an arduous car restoration of a 1976 Porsche 912e at the age of 14 and she’s not stopped loving difficult cars since. Enjoy the journey with The Bad Blonde!