Monday, February 22, 2010

A Hike in the Rocky Mountains

The Grand Teton mountain range is part of the Rocky Mountains. This mountain range has massive peaks that rise upward form the valley floor and is considered to be one of the most beautiful features of the Rocky Mountain Range in North America. Its summits include the Grand Teton at 13,770 ft. Mount Owen at 12,928 ft. Teewinot at 12,325 ft. Middle Teton at 12,804 ft. and South Teton at 12,514 ft. A great deal of this mountain range is located in the Grand Teton National Park. Early French explorers named this mountain range “les trois tetons” or the three breasts. The entire range was once called Teewinot by the Shoshone tribe of Native Americans meaning “many points or pinnacles”. Hiking in the Grand Teton National Park provides an opportunity to appreciate the geology and history of the forests and valleys in and around the National Park. The network of established and maintained backcountry trails through the canyons and lower valleys offer spectacular views of the many mountain lakes and streams. The Phelps Lake/Death Canyon trail is a 7.2 mile round trip that meanders past the Phelps lake overlook, and then drops down into a dense and beautiful forest where deer and elk can be seen in the early morning. A campground is located at the end of a 600 ft. decent to the lake level and is a nice place to rest before continuing on to the patrol cabin at the farthest part of the trail. This is one of the more difficult hikes in the park but its well worth the time and effort. The Taggart/Bradley trail offers a view of Taggart Lake, one of the most visited lakes in the park. Along this trail you might see deer and moose feeding on the low bushes and snowbrush.  

With over 250 miles of trails in the park to choose from you could spend a lifetime exploring the mountains and valleys in this wondrous place.

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