Day 11, Monday, August 15, 2016
One of the activities that I most wanted to do at Grand Teton was to take the boat across Jenny Lake, and hike up to Inspiration Point. I knew that there was going to be a lot of congestion in the area, because they are renovating the parking lot and services there, so we got up early to make sure we could get a parking spot and a spot on the boat.
The boat ride was nice – a relaxing, short trip on a gorgeous lake. The mountains in the background are stunning. Once you get off the boat, you can choose how far you want to go. The entire hike up to Inspiration Point, with a stop at Hidden Falls is about .9 miles each way. However, the trail to Hidden Falls was closed for repairs when we were there, so I didn’t get to see it! My mom didn’t want to hike all the way to Inspiration Point, so I pulled away from her with the agreement that I would meet her wherever she happened to end up. That works fine with an out and back trail.
The trail is a gentle uphill at the beginning, but the last bit of it is steeper switchbacks along the side of a mountain. You will need to be patient about passing, as not all spots are quite wide enough for two. Once you are at the top, at an elevation of 7,200 feet, the view is amazing! You look out over the lake and see the boats coming and going from the dock down below. It is well worth the exertion! I found a family to take my photo and spent a bit of time enjoying the view. A little Golden-Mantled Ground Squirrel was excited to see me; he wanted me to feed him…
On the way down I saw two different pika and spent some time getting photos of them. It was fairly quiet since it was still relatively early, so I got some good photos before another group of people came along to scare them away. I loved seeing those little guys!
On the way back I ran into my mom at another viewpoint and was impressed with how far she had made it. She got her own view to enjoy while waiting for me to come back down.
Mom and I took the boat both ways, but you can hike all the way around the lake for an additional 3 miles. Next time I visit I want to do that! Plus, I still need to see the falls.
Jenny Lake and Inspiration Point were certainly worth the visit!
Costs and Fees: $15 per person round-trip for Jenny Lake boat shuttle.