Boating in Grand Teton
There are many opportunities for enjoying water in Grand Teton National Park. The Snake River flows through the park and features world-class fishing, unparalleled wildlife viewing, and mild rapids depending on time of year. Many of the more accessible lakes are open for a variety of activities.
Floating the Snake River is complex. A tangle of channels and constantly shifting logjams require boaters to anticipate their routes well in advance. Accidents are common. Please use caution and check conditions before each trip. Flow rates very greatly throughout the year. They are posted at river landings and permit offices weekly or when there is a significant change.
Spring flows are very cold, fast, and muddy, making the river more difficult. As snowmelt diminished, volume decreases and water clears. In spite of reduced flow, the current remains deceptively powerful. Strong, upstream afternoon winds may slow your pace.
Boating and Floating Regulations
- Motorboats are permitted on Jenny (10 horsepower maximum) and Jackson lakes. Human-powered vessels are permitted on Jackson, Jenny, Phelps, Emma Matilda, Two Ocean, Taggart, Bradley, Bearpaw, Leigh, and String lakes. Sailboats, water skiing, and windsurfers are allowed only on Jackson Lake.
- Only human-powered rubber rafts, canoes, dories, and kayaks are permitted on the Snake River within the park and parkway. All other waters within the park and parkways are closed to watercraft, including Pacific Creek, Cottonwood Creek, Buffalo Fork, and the Gros Ventre River.
- Vessels must carry USCG approved personal flotation devices (PFDs) of the appropriate size for each person on board. Passengers under 13 years of age must wear a PFD.
- A park boat permit is required for each watercraft. Display the permit on the port side (left) in the stern (back).
- Boating under the influence of alcohol or drugs is prohibited.
- Inner tubes, air mattresses, float tubes, and similar flotation devices are prohibited on the Snake River.
- Motors are prohibited on the Snake River.
- Motors may be used on Jackson Lake for the Flagg Ranch to Lizard Creek section with a motorized boat permit.
- No camping or fires on the river. Camping on lakeshores is permitted in designated lakeshore campgrounds with a backcountry permit. Fires are only allowed in designated campgrounds with a metal fire ring.
- Floating is prohibited within 1,000ft of the Jackson Lake Dam.
- A concession permit is required for all commercial activity in the park.
- Report any accident with a collision or injury to a ranger within 24 hours.
- Pack out all trash.
- Pets are only allowed on a permitted vessel on Jackson Lake, but not in lakeshore campsites or in the water. Pets are not allowed on the Snake River or any other body of water in the park.
Aquatic Invasive Species
PREVENT THE SPREAD OF PATHOGENS - CLEAN. DRAIN. DRY.
Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS), such as whirling disease and zebra or quagga mussels, are a serious ecological and economic threat to the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. Boats, waders, and anything else that comes in contact with a body of water has the potential to spread non-native plants, pathogens, and other invasive species among water bodies.
Wyoming state law requires a boat inspection prior to launch for boats that enter the state. . Boaters must also purchase an Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS) decal from the Wyoming Game and Fish Department.
Learn more about preventing the spread of AIS.
Wyoming AIS Fees
- Motorized, WY registration, $10
- Motorized, non-WY registration, $30
- Non-motorized, WY owner, $5
- Non-motorized, non-WY owner, $15
Permits are required for all motorized and non-motorized boats, including stand-up paddleboards (SUPs). Inflatable craft less than 10ft long are exempt. Privately owned vessels must register each year with Grand Teton National Park. Permits may be purchased at the visitor centers in Moose or Colter Bay, or at the Jenny Lake Ranger Station (cash only).
- Motorized craft $40
- Non-motorized craft $12 (including: canoes, kayaks, drift boats, & SUPs)
Download the following brochures for additional guidelines and permit information:
- Floating Brochure: provides information on floating the Snake River, including river flows, permits required and safety precautions.
- Boating Brochure: provides guidelines for registering boats in the park, launch sites and safety requirements.
Jackson Lake Kayaking Tours
Jenny Lake Shuttle