Jenny Lake can draw scores of visitors on summer days, but this 8-mile loop leaves the crowds behind, passing postcard-worthy views from every direction, including Hidden Falls. From the flagpole at the Jenny Lake Visitor Center, take the paved trail toward the lakeshore. Turn left to start the clockwise loop.
In .25 miles, cross the bridge and pass the boat docks to leave the crowds behind. Continue around the south end of the lake, where there are chances for short side hikes to Bradley Lake and Moose Pond. From there, hike one mile along the lakeshore.
At 2.3 miles, start the first climb, following signs for Hidden Falls. From the viewpoint at 2.7 miles, enjoy the sight of the 80-foot Hidden Falls, nestled in the high, rocky grove.
Next, start the 400-ft. climb to Inspiration Point. From the top, enjoy sweeping views across Jenny Lake and of the towering peaks behind. Continue west on the trail to the Cascade Canyon trail junction, which takes a quick, .6-mile descent toward the lakeshore.
At mile 4, head left at the junction and continue for one mile around Jenny Lake. Hike through a burn area and, at the inlet, turn north and hike .5-miles toward String Lake trailhead.
To complete the Jenny Lake loop, head right over the bridge onto a shaded path that runs along the shoreline for the last 2 miles. Catch glimpses of Cascade Canyon, Teewinot Peak, Mt. St. John, and Rockchuck Peak along the way. Also, keep your eye out for moose and deer roaming small wooded meadows on this last stretch.
INFO For information on permits, current trail and camp conditions, and wilderness guidelines, go to nps.gov/grte/planyourvisit/things2know.htm.
PERMIT A wilderness permit is required for all overnight camping in the backcountry. Reservations accepted ($20 administrative fee for permits during peak season). nps.gov/grte/planyourvisit/back.htm
CONTACT Grand Teton National Park, (307) 739-3300; nps.gov/grte/
-Mapped by Eli Boschetto, Bosco Mountain Photo