Granite Canyon via Aerial Tram – 15.6mi / 25.1km
This big loop, accessible via the exciting and scenic aerial tram at Jackson Hole Resort, traverses wonderful alpine landscapes and explores the wooded Granite Canyon. Start in Teton Village and purchase your ticket for the dramatic tram ride up to the top of Rendezvous Mountain.
There are incredible views in all directions on the ride up. These views culminate at the top, and continue as you follow the trail southwest along the ridgeline. At 0.6mi/0.9km, take the trail that crosses into Grand Teton National Park at the junction, which steeply descends into the park.
The trail travels across predominately alpine meadows interspersed with trees. These meadows explode in color as they bloom throughout the short growing season. Keep your eyes peeled for a wide variety of wildlife and mountain birds. The trail gets steep in some areas as it climbs over a few of the ridges along the traverse. From the last ridge, you drop steeply down through a large boulder field to the playful North Fork Granite Creek.
Near the creek a trail heads up 0.7mi/1.1km to Marion Lake, which is a great side trip to a pretty alpine lake. (See Marion Lake via Aerial Tram for description.) From this junction, follow the Granite Canyon Trail out as it descends Granite Canyon. The landscape transitions from open meadows to denser forests. Numerous sightings of the creek vary from rocky cascades to marshy areas. Peeks at the surrounding mountains are few, but nice.
The trail intersects the Valley Trail as it exits the canyon. Take a right heading south as it wraps around to the slopes of Jackson Hole Resort, down a ski run to Teton Village, and back to your car.
Trailhead: Park at the Jackson Hole Resort near the Aerial Tram in the Teton Village parking lot. Follow the signs to purchase a ride ticket for the tram.
Elevation Gain: 2,000ft / 600m – Elevation Loss: 6,100ft / 1,830m