Where are the best spots for a photo shoot in Jackson Hole, Wyoming?
Nestled in northwest Wyoming between the Gros Ventre and Teton mountain ranges, Jackson Hole is a quaint valley that still holds fast to its authentic and unique Western character. Originally called “Jackson’s Hole” by the frontiersmen and early trappers who traversed these mountains, this majestic paradise is now a beloved destination for adventurers, thrill-seekers and lovers of the great American wilderness. It’s the gateway to both Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Park and home to elk, moose, bison, eagles, bears and other incredible species. Jackson Hole is truly a photographer’s paradise that still feels rugged and undiscovered despite its growing popularity. Although it’s a fantastic destination in all seasons, accessibility to some spots can vary depending on the time of year, so make sure you check weather conditions. Grab your camera and your cowboy boots as we share tips on the best places to take photos in Jackson Hole!
Mormon homesteaders established a community known today as “Mormon Row,” and atypical to most isolated homesteads founded across the United States, these families built their farms in close proximity to share labour and community. Settler Thomas Alma (T.A.) Moulton is famous for his gable-with-shed style barn that is all that remains of the homestead he and his sons built between 1912 and 1945. Moulton Barn now lies within Grand Teton National Park and has become an iconic symbol of Jackson Hole with the Teton Range rising beautifully in the background.
What is better than one Teton Mountain range? Two! Schwabacher’s Landing is a favorite photo spot in Grand Teton National Park due to the majestic reflection of the Teton Mountains in the clear, still waters of Snake River. But don’t just snap your photo and move on. A four-mile hiking trail along the banks of the winding river will guide you past plenty of opportunities to watch for wildlife. The grassy landscape and abundance of fresh water make it a favourite spot for animals and photographers alike. Meandering is highly encouraged!
If unobstructed views of the towering Tetons is a priority, Glacier View Turnout is a must-visit. It offers a direct view of the largest peaks: the Grand Teton, Mt. Owen and Middle Teton. From this vantage point, the sagebrush plains and trees lining the river create the illusion of steps leading up to the mountains, and three of the remaining snow-covered Middle Teton Glacier, Teepee Glacier and Teton Glacier from the Little Ice Age can still be seen. Keep an eye out for antelope gracefully running across the open plains as you enjoy the view.
Snake River Overlook
While incredible scenes can be found around the clock, an early morning at the Snake River Overlook is worth the extra coffee. Ansel Adam’s famous black and white image of the Snake River leading up to the Grand Teton is iconic, and it has become a well-known stopping point within the national park. Unbelievable colours paint the sky at sunrise and sunset, and during the fall months, the deciduous trees turn the river banks golden. If you’re feeling adventurous, trails behind the overlook can help you capture a unique angle from between the pine trees.
Conveniently located along the road leading to Yellowstone National Park, Oxbow Bend is another photographer-favourite. An incomparable display of colours takes place every morning, as the sky transforms from grey into an array of pink and lavender. Gradually, the glow spreads across the tops of the rosy mountains and finally to the rows of aspen trees lining the bend of the river. On a clear, calm morning, the reflection of the Teton mountains with Mount Moran as the centerpiece reflects perfectly into the water.
As the name suggests, the Wedding Tree is a unique and popular location for wedding ceremonies … or simply a casual visit! Located in the Bridger-Teton National Forest, it provides a spectacular, panoramic view of the Teton Range from a high vantage point.
The town of Jackson Hole is equally as picturesque as the beautiful mountain views. George Washington Memorial Park, more commonly known as Town Square, is framed by four iconic arches made completely of elk antlers. Don’t worry — no elk were killed in the making, as elk shed their antlers each year. The antlers are woven together to create a mosaic of 10,000+ pounds of antlers that have become a symbol of this quaint town. A stroll around Jackson Hole would not be complete without a viewing of this unique landmark.
Inner Park Road
If you have time for just one leisurely drive, Grand Teton National Park’s Teton Park Road, or Inner Park Road, is open from May through October and winds past nearly every major peak along the 20-mile route. Cell service can be spotty so be sure to plan ahead. When not admiring the Teton Range, look out for elk in the many open meadows among the wildflowers — but remember, never stop in the middle of the road to view wildlife!
The Jenny Lake Scenic Loop is a one-way, three-mile drive that winds along the east shore of Jenny Lake. The lakeshore is split into South and North Jenny Lake, both offering a variety of amenities to enjoy the water and surrounding area. If you’re keen on stretching your legs and seeking out new viewpoints, enjoy a leisurely hike along a trail through the backcountry. Just north of Jenny Lake lies String Lake, known for its shallow waters, beaches and picnic areas perfect for an afternoon in the sunshine. String Lake also boasts a short trail for day hikers.
The Cascade Canyon Turnout is a particularly memorable spot along Teton Park Road, providing up-close and breathtaking views of the Tetons. This popular spot provides a glimpse of the higher-elevation alpine community. Avid hikers will enjoy one of the most popular hikes in Grand Teton National Park into Cascade Canyon.
While there are plenty of hikes to choose from (and truly, you can’t go wrong here), a few are most notable.
Bradley Taggart Trailhead passes two of six glacially-formed lakes nestled at the base of the mountain range as you make your way among spruce, fir, lodgepole pine and stretches of aspen groves that are particularly stunning in the fall. There are many overlooks offering astonishing views of the Teton Range and many lakes.
Jackson Lake is another beautiful spot to explore, with easy parking at Signal Mountain Lodge in the winter. With multiple loops ranging from two to seven miles in length, this area is perfect for hikers of all experience levels looking for scenic views and adventure in the great outdoors.
Finally, the Colter Bay Village and campground on the shores of Jackson Lake offers easy access all in one place to the grandeur of Grand Teton. Amenities like kayaking, canoeing, fishing, ranger-led programs and, of course, hiking create an unforgettable experience for those who love nothing more than to be immersed in nature. Remember to pack extra batteries for your camera — you’ll need them in this picturesque destination.
While Yellowstone National Park is a sprawling display of natural wonder covering nearly 3,500 square miles, its diverse landscape means you can easily see a variety of landscapes, scenery and wildlife even within a day trip. Just be sure to start your day early to make the most of your time! Walk the boardwalk loop around West Thumb Geyser Basin as you experience the wonder of earth’s geothermal power and watch Old Faithful’s famous eruption of up to 8,400 gallons of scalding hot water shooting into the sky. Midway Geyser Bain and Norris Geyser Basin are other interesting stops along the way. As you cruise through the rolling valleys, along Yellowstone Lake and past open grassland, don’t be surprised if you spot bison ambling right up along the road.
Inspired to make a memorable trip to the great Wyoming outdoors? Book a Flytographer shoot in Jackson Hole to capture the magic.