Jackson Hole, WY

Need some advice from anyone who has paddled in or around Jackson Hole, WY. I will be there with a large family group next month and need some advice on where to go for a day of kayaking. I frequently paddle but the rest of the group will be non paddlers. The good news is that they are all in good physical condition.

It looks like Jenny Lake and Jackson Lake are the closest but not having been there would appreciate any input.



My wife and I were there
last late August, early September and loved it. I recommend you get the national geographic map of the Grand Tetons, as it shows in excellent detail, all water and land features, put-ins, etc… As a suggested place to paddle, DO NOT miss a morning and late afternoon paddle at Oxbow Bend. Amazing backdrops, and wildlife viewing opportunities there!

good suggestion
on the maps. I’m looking through a a book on Yellowstond and Grand Tetons but the maps are not that detailed. Is Oxbow Bend on one of the lakes? Also, did you rent your kayaks there? If so do you remember who you rented from?

Some Info

– Last Updated: Jun-25-07 7:16 PM EST –

You can rent canoes at Coulter Bay, it is a good place to put in if you have rented a kayak to paddle on Jackson Lake. Jenny, Leigh, and String lake are beautiful spots to paddle but small. The oxbow is part of the Snake River near Jackson Lake, good place to see moose up close. I imagine you can rent kayaks in Jackson or at Moose Junctionif you google for kayak rentals.


For a rental boat, go in the
town of Jackson itself, that way you can take it anywhere you can drive to. If I remember correctly, the Coulter Bay rentals can only be used in that bay! No paddling on Jackson Lake unless you bring a rental from town, or your own.

Oxbow Bend is located just northeast of Jackson Lake, upper part of the Snake River. Try Jackson Hole’s Chamber of Commerce for a listing of rental places, there’s no shortage!

For Jenny Lake, rentals of both canoe and 'yaks are available there. You’ll love it! It’s an absolutely beautiful place, despite being a “smaller lake”. You’ll still have a great day paddling, picknicking, exploring, etc., my wife and I can’t wait to go back!

Put ins in the Tetons
I live in Cody… 4+ hours away. Paddle there often.

Jenny Lake- put-in is at SE shore, south of the BIG Jenny Lake parking area. Take the Lupine Meadow Rd. Dirt but OK. Gravel ramp.

String Lake- put-in is near picnic area. Easy in.

Jackson Lake- numerous places to launch: Coulter Bay, Leeks Marina, etc. There is motorized travel allowed.

The Snake River - Oxbow: DO NOT MISS THIS! Put in just below the Jackson Lake Dam; take out at Pacific Creek is easy. I usually can thumb a ride between the two in about 5-10 minutes. A few lazy WW riffles but otherwise flat moving water. Can also put-in AND take-out at the overlook parking area; just a little scramble down to the water… my 12 year old daughter can do it.

SAFETY: do these in the morning or evening. Watch for thunderstorms. They can develop with astonishing speed.


Any suggestions on hauling our rentals
We will be flying up and renting cars in Jackson Hole. I like the idea of renting in town but I’m not sure about hauling several kayaks around with a rental car. Without a trailer we may be somewhat limited to where we can rent.