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Bridger Teton National Forest

backpacker Gros Ventre Wilderness
backpacker Gros Ventre Wilderness

The Bridger-Teton National Forest located in Western Wyoming, offers more than 3.4 million acres of land for your outdoor recreation enjoyment, the second largest national forest outside Alaska. With its pristine watersheds, abundant wildlife and immense wildlands, the Bridger-Teton National Forest comprises a large part of the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem - the largest intact ecosystem in the lower 48 United States. 1.2 million acres of the Bridger Teton is designated Wilderness, it has over 30,000 miles of road and trail and thousands of miles of unspoiled rivers and streams, the Bridger-Teton offers something for everyone. No matter when you chose to visit. The Bridger Teton National Forest offers many recreational experiences for visitors year-round. We encourage you to experience this unique piece of American Heritage.

 

Mill Iron Guest Ranch trail ride Gros Ventre Wilderness
Mill Iron Guest Ranch trail ride Gros Ventre Wilderness

Horseback trail riding is a treat on 2,200 miles of BTNF system trails, off-road vehicle touring, mountain bike riding, and rock climbing are just a few of the warm weather activities available to visitors on the Bridger-Teton. In addition to the many land-based activities, summer visitors can also experience the Bridger-Teton National Forest by water. Fisherman and scenic canoeists enjoy stretches of the Salt River, Buffalo Fork River, Green River, and flat water sections of the Snake River that meander over the forest boundary. For the adrenaline junkie, the stretch of the lower Snake River, the Hoback River, and the Gros Ventre River, offer a chance for boaters to get a little wet, while encountering some of the most spectacular river canyons Wyoming has to offer. Experienced, expert, canoers can paddle these as well.

fly fisherman Greys River
fly fisherman Greys River

World-class angling opportunities include the prospect of catching nine different species of trout within a variety of stream and natural lakes habitats ranging from alpine lakes, large free-flowing rivers, and small spring-fed creeks. Offering fishing opportunities for various cutthroat trout (native), brook trout (non-native), rainbow trout (non-native), brown trout (non-native), golden trout (non-native) and lake trout, the cool clear waters of the Bridger-Teton National Forest are extensive, impressive, and highly productive. There are several areas where you can also fish for arctic greyling. The southern half of the Bridger-Teton National Forest alone contains over 2,300 miles of stream and 25,000 acres of lakes greater than 5 acres in size with 30 species of native and non-native fishes.

Elk Hunters Gros Ventre Wilderness
Elk Hunters Gros Ventre Wilderness

The opportunity to hunt big game on public lands has been a part of our American Heritage since the inception of public lands in the early 1900's. This opportunity is beautifully exemplified on the Bridger-Teton National Forest in Western Wyoming. While the Wyoming Department of Game and Fish manages hunting and fishing opportunities, the public lands of the Bridger-Teton National Forest is the favored hunting grounds of many Americans. Having opportunities to hunt deer, elk, moose, antelope, big horn sheep, and mountain goat, as well as game bird species such as spotted, blue and ruffed grouse, persons from around the country, and around the world, have come to enjoy the hunting opportunities available on the Bridger-Teton National Forest. For hunting information, license applications and fees, please visit the Wyoming Department of Game and Fish web site.

Fly fisherman Flat Creek outside Jackson WY
Fly fisherman Flat Creek outside Jackson WY

Working closely with the Wyoming Game and Fish Department, the Bridger-Teton National Forest is proud of the habitat enhancement and improvement projects implemented along many rivers and streams within the Forest boundary.

ski mountaineer Granite Creek Bridger Teton National Forest
ski mountaineer Granite Creek Bridger Teton National Forest

Winter recreation is also abundant on the forest. Visitors can enjoy snowmobiling on hundreds of miles of groomed trails that network with the Continental Divide Trails, as well as vast stretches of open land for snowmobiling provide many powder hound opportunities. For the cross-country skier countless miles of groomed and ungroomed cross-country ski trails, beg to be explored. Ice fishing, snowshoeing, heli-skiing and ice climbing are a few other winter recreation activities.

 

camper tent Green River Lakes
camper tent Green River Lakes

During the summer months, visitors can choose from 37 developed campgrounds or partake of the many dispersed camping opportunities offered throughout the forest. The Bridger-Teton also boasts of 34 designated trailheads with over 2,200 miles of system trails that vary in difficulty from trails that are visited by family day-hikers too those that are tackled only by hard-core wilderness enthusiasts

skier in powder Jackson Hole Mountain Resort
skier in powder Jackson Hole Mountain Resort

The Bridger-Teton also has permitted three ski resorts, Jackson Hole Mountain Resort, Snow King and White Pine, which all offer exciting downhill runs for snowboarders and alpine skiers. Mushing (dog sledding) and backcountry skiing are other activities that are available to visitors once the snow flies.

Public Land Ranching Bridger Teton National Forest
Public Land Ranching Bridger Teton National Forest

All our national forests are multi use lands for the benefit of all and are administered by the Department of Agriculture. Mining, logging, public land ranching, and energy development are all a part of the multiple use charter. This seems repugnant to some, but we are all the beneficiaries. Logging gives us lumber to build our homes, energy provides a way to heat our homes and make our cars go forward, grazing lowers the price of our meat and keeps scenic ranches in our valley bottoms, and mining provides the minerals we need to produce the things we need - collectively.

Wilderness Areas

Teton Wilderness.

Jade Lake Teton Wilderness Bridger Teton National Forest
Jade Lake Teton Wilderness Bridger Teton National Forest

The United States Congress designated the Teton Wilderness in 1964 and it now has a total of 585,238 acres. All the wilderness is in Wyoming and is managed by the Forest Service. The state's second largest Wilderness area straddles the Continental Divide deep in the heart of Wyoming's Yellowstone Ecosystem. It is bordered on the north by Yellowstone National Park, on the east by Washakie Wilderness, on the west by Grand Teton National Park, and on the south by the Mt Leidy Highlands and Gros Ventre Wilderness. To the west of the Great Divide timbered ridges, grassy slopes, and broad willow and sedge meadows dominate the land with elevations from 7,000 feet to 9,675 feet. To the east of the Great Divide are high alpine plateaus broken by ridges and extensive mountain meadows with elevations from 8,000 feet to 12,165 feet

Bridger Wilderness

Squartop Mountain Green River Lakes
Squartop Mountain Green River Lakes

Located in northwest Wyoming, it lies adjacent to the continental divide and encompasses the western slopes of the Wind River Range. The Bridger Wilderness was first designated a Primitive Area by the Secretary of Agriculture in 1931, making it one of the first primitive areas in the country. It was designated as one of America's first Wildernesses by the Passage of the Wilderness Act of 1964. The Wyoming Wilderness Act of 1984 expanded the Bridger Wilderness from its initial 392,169 acres to its present 428,169 acres.

The Bridger Wilderness contains a beautiful and rugged alpine landscape. The Wind River Range boasts 48 summits higher than 12,000 feet and seven of the largest active glaciers in the contiguous United States. These impressive features are complimented with thousands of lakes and ponds along hundreds of miles of streams offering outstanding fishing opportunities. Wildlife abounds with numerous species of animals and birds. Surrounding the jagged alpine crest is an extensive coniferous forest with lush parks and meadows and a variety of wildflowers.

The Bridger Wilderness is managed in a manner so that its natural characteristics are preserved, and human influences on the landscape are minimized. This allows visitors to experience a unique type of recreation and also provides for scientific, educational, and scenic opportunities and preservation of historic values. The quality of Wilderness depends on you. Please help protect the Wilderness by following the Bridger Wilderness Regulations and by incorporating Wilderness Ethics into your backcountry activities. Thank you and enjoy your visit.

Gros Ventre Wilderness

Turquoise Lake
Turquoise-Lake Gros Ventre Wilderness

The United States Congress designated the Gros Ventre Wilderness in 1984 and it now has a total of 317,874 acres. Hundreds of thousands of people visit Jackson Hole on the Gros Ventre Wilderness's western boundary every year, yet only a minute fraction of this number ever venture into the wilds of the Gros Ventre Wilderness. Even fewer including those who live in the area - can claim any real familiarity with it.

The Gros Ventre is wild, steep, and rugged. It has 20 peaks over 10,000 feet and several over 11,000 feet. It is forests and meadows full of elk, moose, mule deer, bighorn sheep, grizzly and black bear, just to name a few. It is 287,000 acres of challenges, secrets, beauty and solitude.

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