September 11, 2011: Grand Teton National Park

I sprung out of bed like someone who has just woken up and dove into the shower before I realized that the cabin was not on fire. I decided to take this opportunity to actually take a shower and then I headed out to the car for our drive over to Jenny Lake and our ranger led hike to Inspiration Point.

The drive went off without a hitch or a hitch hiker and we got to the visitors center at Jenny Lake well ahead of the crowds trying to snag a ticket to the hike like us.  First come first serve is the motto of national parks everywhere and is one of the first things they teach you in national park school.  After getting our tickets, we joined the other twenty or so hikers and our ranger for the journey ahead.  As we started to hike over to the boat I was surprised to see I was the only one wearing a Yellowstone shirt.

We soon reached Jenny Lake where I was expecting to run into Forrest Gump at any moment but he never did materialize. After a short scenic boat ride we found ourselves dumped on the opposite shore with a bunch of rowdy hikers inspired to conquer Inspiration Point.  As we started to move up the trail, cameras were whipped out with no regard for safety.

We made our way up the trail and had scouts out in all directions looking for The Hidden Falls but found this ended up being unnecessary since the falls are easily seen from the trail.  We all stopped and waited for them to disappear but they didn’t.

We eventually moved onwards until we came to some switchbacks that took us to Inspiration Point where we all sat down to write some poetry and a few novels.  I was personally inspired enough to come up with a new dance move before heading back.

We started to head down and were giving each other pats on the back for our successful storming of the point when it actually started to storm.  As soon as the first drops hit, all hell broke loose, and it was a mad scramble to get back to the lake where we could find  safety from the lightning under the trees down by the water.  Luckily no one got struck and the boat eventually arrived to take us back. Either storms move faster than I thought in the mountains or somebody slipped me a hallucinogen because I can’t find any pictures to confirm I was actually in a storm….

Upon arriving safely over the lake, we decided to drive around a bit and see some of the views of the Tetons now that the haze had been vaporized.

After our drive up and town the park, we headed back to the lodge area for some r&r before our date with a float trip down the snake river.

We did our resting, then we jumped in the van for the short ride to the launching of our craft into the Snake River.  We wormed our way down the river and were pleasantly surprised to see some of the more exotic wildlife in the region like the bald eagle, beaver, and trees.  We also caught some great views of the Tetons as we made our way down the turbulent water and were even treated to a nice shower as the skies opened up near the end.

We headed back the lodge area after our boating adventures where we had a nice night cap to the day with a dazzling stormy sunset display.  As is customary in most cultures….dinner and going to sleep is what followed the suns demise.

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