Head high up into the Teton Range to find Jackson Hole’s first tourist town, a little place named after an artist.
Come to Moran to see why painter Thomas Moran was so captivated by the countryside in this part of the States. Consider coming in the warmer months though as winter in Moran is severe. In summer, however, this place really comes into its own. Lace up your hiking boots and steel yourself for stunning. It’s one of the most iconic gateways to Grand Teton National Park, and Grand Teton does icons like almost nowhere else.
Bring a paper map because this is wilderness territory. The wildlife is very real; when park rangers tell you to watch out for thimbleberries, don’t assume they’re warning you of poisonous local flora. These Grand Teton fruits are a favorite of bears, amongst other morsels, such as unwary walkers.
Tempted to trail blaze on your first time out? Well, don’t be too quick to unleash your frontier spirit. There are guides for everything in this part of the world. Slide into the Snake River Canyon in the company of locals; the boating is still intrepid, only you come home safe to tell tall tales. The road less travelled might sound irresistible, but there’s no shame in following a well-marked route. Take a picnic, position a mountain backdrop into a selfie, and you’re as good as a pioneer. Even challenging hikes such as Two Oceans Lake Loop have cheat sheets, if you ask nicely.
Lodges with lingering views, soothing pools, and lakeside settings are another Moran talent. Hardy out on the hills doesn’t translate indoors. Cocktail hour is a time-honored tradition, harking back to the days when this little tucked-away town was Jackson Hole’s very first tourist town. Take it easy over dinner and savor what’s served. Catch of the day is as common here as in California, and probably even fresher.