Yellowstone / Grand Teton National Park Explorer
Multisport in Wyoming with O.A.R.S
- Enjoy the morning mist, grassy meadows and forest glens that are home to abundant wildlife
- Kayak the southern shore and hike to Bearpaw and Leigh Lakes
- Hike alongside rushing creeks and waterfalls; fish for trout
On this one-of-a-kind multi-sport adventure, O.A.R.S. takes you off the beaten path and beyond the boardwalks of Yellowstone and Grand Teton national parks to a wild Wyoming that few have seen.
We provide everything you need to sea kayak, raft, hike and sightsee your way to some of the most extraordinary sites in the region. From the geothermal wonders of Old Faithful and the numerous geysers of Yellowstone Lake to the cool, reflective waters and pristine wilderness of Jackson Lake and the Snake River beneath the Tetons, we take care of details so you can enjoy lively days and dreamy nights under star-filled skies. Our passionate, professional guides share with you their intimate knowledge of the ethereal landscape including its mammals, birds, wild flowers and the volcanic forces that shaped the area.
- Skilled professional guide service
- 4/5 nights catered camping
- Expedition equipment, including 2-person shared tent, splash jacket and dry bags
- High quality inflatable rafts, sea kayaks, and related equipment including paddle and personal flotation device
- All transfers from Jackson to Yellowstone and return from the river
- Transportation to and from Jackson, Wyoming
- Pre- and post-trip accommodations and meals
- Sleeping bags and pads (these items may be rented from O.A.R.S.)
- Insurance of any kind, including travel insurance
- Alcoholic beverages
- Items of a personal nature
Day by Day Itinerary
We begin the first day of our adventure in Yellowstone National Park with a visit to Old Faithful, the world's most renowned geyser. Following a delicious lunch in the park, we continue our journey with a guided tour of the geothermal hotspots of the Lower Geyser Basin featuring regularly-erupting geysers, hot springs and an otherworldly mud pool.
The West Thumb Geyser Basin section of Yellowstone Lake offers the ideal venue for our 3-hour introduction to sea kayaking and an up-close perspective of geysers erupting at the water's edge. After exploring the geothermal features of the West Thumb of Yellowstone Lake, we will then make camp at Grant Village Campground.
After a hearty breakfast we drive south to Grand Teton National Park, arriving at Leeks Marina just before lunch. We say good-bye to the vans and civilization and head across Jackson Lake in our stable kayaks. Continuing on our paddle to our campsite at Colter Camp on the western shore of Jackson Lake, we'll enjoy dinner and the sunset beneath the Tetons. There may be a possibility for a short hike into one of the remote canyons of the lake's western shore.
We paddle our sea kayaks along the western shore of Jackson Lake to Grassy Island located in Moran Bay. This secluded island is our camp for the next night or two. There are several short hiking options available during the day, including Moran Canyon. Keep your eyes open for moose, elk, fox, beaver, black bear, mule deer and coyote that are found in the area.
Depending on the group and weather conditions we may enjoy a hike to Bearpaw and/or Trapper lakes, cascades in Moran Canyon, a longer hike to Leigh Lake, or just relaxing in our secluded Grassy Island camp. We return to camp for another night of fantastic wilderness cuisine and camping beneath the starry sky.
Now that we have conditioned sea legs we depart Grassy Island camp and paddle to Spalding Bay. En route, we will stop for lunch and take a short hike along the southern shore of Jackson Lake and the majestic Teton view. Spalding camp is our destination for a delicious dinner under the stars and a spectacular camping spot.
After breakfast we depart Spalding Bay for Signal Mountain where we leave the sea kayaks behind and transfer in vans to the Snake River near Pacific Creek. Our rafts are waiting for the 13-mile peaceful meander along the base of the Grand Tetons on the Snake River. We may see moose browsing on willow, or yellow-bellied marmot sunning on the rocks. Take-out is near Deadman’s Bar, with a late afternoon return to Jackson.
About The Operator:
Angels Camp, CA
O.A.R.S. was the first exclusively oar-powered rafting company permitted to operate trips on the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon. Through our four decades in the adventure travel industry, we have become the largest and most diverse family of river-based adventure travel companies in North America, operating on over 1230 miles of rivers in the continental U.S. In addition to our signature Grand Canyon trips, we offer adventure vacations in Alaska, California, Colorado, Idaho, Oregon, Utah and Wyoming, as well as in British Columbia, Chile, Galapagos, Fiji, Baja and Peru. The heart and soul of O.A.R.S.-from president and founder George Wente to the more than 300 dedicated guides and employees on our team-is that we are all genuinely invested in every passenger, every trip and every lifetime memory.
We consider our O.A.R.S. outdoor adventure guides to be among the best in the industry! Some began their river-guiding careers more than 30 years ago; others were born into it. They are entertainers, historians, geologists, botanists, chefs, medics, anthropologists, event planners, authors, photographers, wilderness pathfinders, and they are the single most complimented component of our organization. Our guides are also professional, playful and ever mindful of your wants and needs, and their enthusiasm for the natural world is contagious. Learn about our guides through reading their detailed biographies, experience and interests.
Our Adventure Consultants and our year-round office staff who provide you with all the trip-specific tips, trip planning assistance and adventure travel trip logistical support have more than 100 years of combined experience in the adventure travel industry, as well as close to 1000 river trips between them.
Your O.A.R.S. Adventure Vacation
You concentrate on fun. We brew the coffee, cook the meals, pump the boats, provide the gear, plan the day, find the best camp spot, and we strive to fill each day with excitement, discovery and the attention to detail you deserve. O.A.R.S. provides the best average guide-to-guest ratio in the adventure travel business (1:4).
You do only what you feel like doing. Want to paddle a ‘ducky' or admire the view from the bow of a boat; go on a day hike or stay in camp and read; save room for dessert or have two pieces of seared salmon? Every day is yours to do with as you please.
Is there any other experience more conducive to creating new, lasting friendships and deepening family bonds than an O.A.R.S. adventure? Our outdoor trips are wonderful equalizers, bringing together like-minded people from diverse backgrounds. Time and again we hear from guests about their joy of having met kindred spirits and new traveling companions. Parents bask in their child's newly-gained confidence in the natural world. Gone are electronic distractions, commutes and deadlines, leaving guests with uninterrupted time to relax, snuggle under the stars, savor a sunset and swap tales around the campfire.
When you join an O.A.R.S. adventure travel trip, you're not just a customer-you are a friend, a member of the crew and an extension of our family-owned and operated company. We'll answer your questions, feed you well, show you a good time and share with you our passion for the world's waterways.
Outdoor adventure vacations are our specialty, and we work hard to provide our guests with the best travel experience of their lives. If part of your trip under our control wasn't everything you expected, we will work with you to make it right.
Environmental stewardship is nothing new to O.A.R.S. We've been at it for four decades. In partnership with our guests, we have contributed more than $3 million in donations and fees toward the preservation of the environment and to environmental and wildlife conservation initiatives. For a detailed account of our environmentally responsible practices, check out our Responsible Travel page.
Don't Just Take Our Word for It
O.A.R.S. has been routinely recognized by adventure industry experts, media and our guests for our commitment to excellence and innovation in travel. In both 2008 and 2009, National Geographic Adventure magazine selected O.A.R.S. as "The Best River & Sea Outfitter on Earth" based on their criteria including education, sustainability, quality of service, spirit of adventure and references. Since 2007, Condé Nast Traveler's Wendy Perrin has recognized our Reservations Manager, Mindy Gleason, as the "Top Travel Specialist" in the River Rafting category for her unique ability to offer O.A.R.S. travelers "the best blend of expertise, access, and good value." Additionally, year after year magazines such as National Geographic Traveler, Outside, Men's Journal and Sunset along with NBC, CNBC, Forbes Traveler and SmarterTravel.com have all recognized O.A.R.S. for serving up some of the "Best Trips on the Planet."