Grand Teton Pet Friendly Hotels & Dog Activities


Pet Friendly Hotels & Dog Activities

Discover our picks for pet friendly hotels and top 10 dog friendly activities, hikes and walks near Grand Teton National Park.

Whether you couldn’t find a pet-sitter or you just love to bring Fido along with you on vacation, pet friendly hotels and activities near Grand Teton National Park or in Jackson Hole aren’t the easiest to find, especially in peak tourist season when everything’s booked up. (See pet friendly hotels near Grand Teton National Park.)

Many people arrive in Jackson Hole, assuming their pets will be as welcome as they are. Only to discover that Grand Teton National Park’s strict pet regulations will make it hard to vacation like you want in the mountains. 

The basic rule of thumb is that your dogs or other pets can go only where a car can — and then only if they’re leashed, you’re actually holding the leash and your pet isn’t messing with wildlife or barking. 

That means trails within the park are out if Fido’s going to come along. And if you’re an adventurous vacationer, that might make you consider another destination first.

But consider this: Jackson Hole, the town closest to Grand Teton National Park, has a massive dog owner population that has learned to adapt to the park’s pet regulations. All while still allowing their pets a piece of outdoor paradise. The following list will let you vacation like a local.

Read on to discover the 10 best Grand Teton dog friendly things to do. You’ll find them all close to Grand Teton National Park (and some within). And even though you’re not in the park, you’ll still be in the mountains or have great mountain views. 

Let’s go for a walk so you don’t need to pause your vacation for the paws... 

1. Walk your dog on the inner Grand Teton National Park Road without cars buzzing by (November - April)

Starting location: Taggart Lake Trailhead or Signal Mountain Lodge

Distance round-trip: Many miles of road available

Difficulty: Mostly flat road walk (easy)

Leash: Required

You can walk your dog in Grand Teton anywhere cars can go. But that means cars can go there too. Not even the multi-use pathway mirroring the road is pet friendly. 

That means either you need to put up with the exhaust and crowding from RVs and countless vehicles, or you wait until they’re gone…

With majestic mountain views towering above you on the inner road of Grand Teton National Park, you can walk your dog (or cat or hamster) right down the road’s center line, if you want, between November 1 and April 30. 

That’s right, for several months every year the park completely shuts down the scenic road down to vehicles, forcing passing cars to bypass the prettiest areas. But on foot, it’s all yours. Especially in November and April, when the park still plows the road to allow walkers and bikes to take full advantage. 

The rest of the off season, you’ll probably want snowshoes or cross-country skis to get the most enjoyment of this unique road walk.

It’s one of the best dog walks in all of Jackson Hole — the valley that contains Grand Teton National Park — provided you’re willing to leash your pet and keep it under control.

2. Take a stroll through the wildlife haven of Moose-Wilson Road (November - April)

Starting location: Teton Village or Moose

Distance round-trip: Up to 15 miles

Difficulty: Mostly flat road walk (easy)

Leash: Required

Moose-Wilson Road is a gorgeous scenic byway wending through marshland and forest at the base of the Grand Tetons. It’s a known haven for moose, bear, elk, beaver and more, so keep your eyes peeled as you tackle this walk. 

Between November 1 and April 30, there’s no motorized vehicles allowed on Moose-Wilson Road, meaning you and Fido will be able to wander all over the road. And take the time to enjoy one of the most scenic areas in Grand Teton National Park. 

Just like the inner road, this road is plowed in the months of April and November, and you’ll probably want snowshoes or cross-country skis through the rest of the winter for your dog walk.

This road is narrow, meaning even in the summer there are few places for traffic to stop. In fact, the park is analyzing if it should shut down, reroute or configure traffic allowances on the road as is. 

But in the long winter months, you don’t have to worry about any of that and can just breathe deep in the fresh mountain air with your (man’s) best friend.

3. Take a hike to a 1930s fire lookout tower with Teton views at Huckleberry Lookout

Starting location: Sheffield Creek Trailhead

Distance round-trip: 10 miles

Difficulty: Strenuous (2,200 feet of elevation gain)

Leash: Voice control OK

Want to get off the beaten path but still have incredible Teton views? Sheffield Creek is a little-known trailhead on forestland at the north edge of Grand Teton National Park. It lies beneath the 9,600-foot Huckleberry Mountain. 

This often-ignored trail lies between Grand Teton National Park and Yellowstone, meaning you’ll get some stunning views of the mountains in both as you climb through the forest to the summit. And since it’s on forestland, you can ditch the leash and still have yourself a Teton experience. 

If you’re dedicated enough to reach the top, you’ll be greeted by a quaint log lookout tower built in 1938 and in active use until 1957. The tower has recently been renovated because the unique building is on the National Register of Historic Places. 

Other similar lookout towers have been dismantled in the area. (See Shadow Mountain below).

4. Explore Shadow Mountain with your dog

Starting location: Shadow Mountain Trailhead or Shadow Mountain North Trailhead

Distance round-trip: Various trails available

Difficulty: Moderate

Leash: Voice control OK

Shadow Mountain lies across Jackson Hole from the mighty Grand Teton Range, where dogs aren’t usually welcomed.

But Shadow Mountain with its network of trails and Teton views is a great destination if you want to let your dog roam free while you still get to experience the area’s splendor yourself. 

Much like Huckleberry Mountain above (see 3) until recent years Shadow Mountain was home to a rickety fire lookout tower complete with a spiral staircase. It was dismantled as a safety concern. 

You can choose to drive to the summit and explore the wildflower meadows or stop at the base and take a trail heavily trafficked by mountain bikes. Or you can head to the Lost Creek area at Shadow Mountain North where you’re more likely to compete with horses and off-road vehicles.

Either way you’ll find intermittent Teton views, wildflower meadows and stunning aspen and lodgepole forests your canine will love.

5. Trek into the Tetons with your dog at Table Mountain

Starting location: Teton Canyon Trailhead

Distance round-trip: 8-14 miles, depending on route

Difficulty: Strenuous

Leash: Required

Grand Teton National Park eats up most of the Teton Range, meaning you can’t take your furry friends on most popular trails. However, if you plan for an hour-long drive from Jackson Hole, you can access the Tetons from the forestland side via Idaho. 

In fact, for epic backcountry Teton views, Table Mountain might be the best Teton hike to take with your dog. 

Park regulations for dogs aren’t in effect here, but you’ll feel like you’re in the heart of the Tetons when you summit Table Mountain, which is situated just behind the Grand Teton, Middle Teton and South Teton near a spectacular place named Hurricane Pass. 

6. Take a quick day hike with your dog to Ski Lake

Starting location: Phillips Canyon Trailhead

Distance round-trip: 4.4 miles from trailhead

Difficulty: Moderate 

Leash: Voice control OK

Teton Pass is notorious for its massive snowpack and steep road. But in the summer, it just means “free elevation.” 

Though you’re fully in the Tetons on Teton Pass, you’re technically outside Grand Teton National Park boundaries, meaning you can ditch the leash and let your dog roam free — as long as you maintain voice control.

Ski Lake is a popular destination for dog owners. You’ll take a comparatively easy hike through aspen groves, wildflowers, evergreens and mountain meadows to a gorgeous mountain lake your dog will love to swim in.

7. Let your dog swim at Slide Lake

Starting location: Slide Lake

Distance round-trip: N/A

Difficulty: Easy

Leash: Voice control OK

This is a place you’ll want to see anyway. In 1925, 50 million cubic yards of boulders, dirt and debris hurtled into the Gros Ventre River at 50 miles per hour. Called the Gros Ventre Slide, you’ll still recognize its massive scar on the hillside.

What is now Slide Lake built up behind the dam before it finally burst two years later, mostly wiping out the town of Kelly Wyoming. 

Nowadays, it’s a quiet place to relax by a lake or the Gros Ventre River, fish and watch your dog swim and pounce in the shallow, pure water. 

And if you want more, the Gros Ventre Range has many pet friendly trails to explore.

8. Summit ‘the Sleeping Indian’ with your dog

Starting location: Slide Lake

Distance round-trip: 12-14 miles

Difficulty: Easy

Leash: Voice control OK

An icon of Jackson Hole, you may find yourself drawn to Sheep Mountain, affectionately known as the Sleeping Indian for its resemblance to a monumental Native American chief in full feather headdress laying on his back.

And luckily, you can bring your four-legged friend with you on this one. 

The trail climbs from the National Elk Refuge into wilderness area where you’ll pass wildflower meadows, lush forests and the wreckage of a cargo plane from President Clinton’s 1996 visit to Jackson Hole. 

The summit offers stellar wilderness views, including of several backcountry lakes. But beware, the trail has little water for your thirsty pup.

Note: This summit can also be accessed from the Gros Ventre area (see 7), but the trail is much longer, although with a little more water access early on.

9. Josie’s Ridge dog hike (and other trails on Snow King)

Starting location: Park on road by post office

Distance round-trip: 5 miles

Difficulty: Strenuous

Leash: Voice control OK

The Town Hill, or Snow King is a summer hike staple for Jackson Hole residents and their dogs. 

Despite being almost literally on top of downtown, you’ll pass through lush river plains and dense forests with a good possibility of seeing fox, moose and other wildlife on the way. 

This is a fun Jackson Hole ski area in the winter, but the trail to the summit at Josie’s Ridge will give you spectacular views of the Tetons, Flat Creek and Jackson Hole. 

Added bonus: Your overheating dog will appreciate a quick dip in Flat Creek when you’re back on flat ground. Other trails also branch out all over Snow King. 

10. Walk your dog along the Snake River at Emily’s Pond and the Snake River Levee

Starting location: Emily Stevens Park

Distance round-trip: Up to 4.4 miles round-trip

Difficulty: Easy

Leash: Voice control OK

Need an easy down day or quick morning walk during your Grand Teton getaway? Head to Emily Stevens Park and head toward the river for a local-favorite dog walk. 

You’ll love the fantastic Teton views that loom over the braided Snake River, and your dog will appreciate the chance to manufacture some wet dog smell. 

A vacation fit for any dog owner

Grand Teton National Park may have tough rules when it comes to pet-friendliness, but you’ll still have plenty of options to make your vacation as special for man’s best friend as it is for you in Jackson Hole. 

You’ll truly be able to unleash your Grand Teton National Park Vacation — and that furry friend of yours. 

Now hit the trail, or find your pet-friendly lodging in Jackson Hole here. 

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