Paddling the Snake River in Grand Teton National Park

We love paddling the lakes and rivers every chance we get and especially in the National parks since it allows us great views of the parks and we typically have the water to ourselves (most tourists stick to the hikes and pullouts).

During our visit to the Grand Teton National Park, we knew we wanted to paddle the Snake River. After getting some paddling information at the Moose Junction visitor center, we learned that there are a few key things you need to do before you can paddle:

  • Complete watercraft inspection: Free
  • Buy Wyoming water permits: only needed if water craft is over 10 ft.
  • Get Grand Teton National Park permits: $10 each

We decided to paddle the topmost section of the river, starting at the Jackson Dam and paddling down to the Pacific Creek take out, west of the Moran entrance. Since we aren’t towing a car, we decided to lock one of our bikes at the Pacific creek takeout and ride back to the dam afterwards to pick up the RV. Seemed to be a popular option…

This worked out GREAT! It was only a 20 minute bike ride back to go pick up Miles (our RV) afterward and Julie caught up with her mom while I rode back:).

This section of the Snake was 5 miles and easy paddling with no large rapids. We chose not to continue on down the river because it braids quite a lot and we were warned that we may get stuck. The river was beautiful and quiet, and it was cool to experience the famous Oxbow Bend section in a kayak- this is where the river makes a sharp turn and wildlife are common.

We saw a bald eagle, fish, and lots of ducks. The views of the Tetons were great right when we started and also around Oxbow Bend area. Best part- we only saw a few other paddlers, but it may be busier on a weekend. Happy paddling!

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