The magnificent Grand Tetons faced us on the road and I faced them right back, unwilling to look away.
As we crossed into the national park, a moose balefully stared at the crowds huddling along the banks of the river, in whose cold water the moose was sheltered. I looked around balefully too, shying away from the hot dog toting crowds. I wanted to get out and camp in the mountains’ shadow, not sit under the eaves of a park convenience store. Feeling mildly claustrophobic, we drove past the already-full tent-only campsite, aiming for another at the far north of the park.
A more serene scene greeted us: a spot on the edge of the campground, bordered by a lake and hedged in by flowers. We set up camp and then I wanted to swim.
What’s as refreshing as jumping into frigid water? I may be crazy, but I haven’t found an adequate alternative. From the Finnish sauna to the Russian banya to Lake Baikal to glacier lake swims here in the Pacific Northwest, I’ve been shocked and refreshed by plunges into bone cold water. I, who don’t particularly like swimming, am lured into the icy-under-your-skin embrace of these cool bodies. I go to them: they’re indifferent to me.
After some partner convincing, we walked down to the beach, bathing suits in hand. We changed, hiding behind a rack of canoes though we were the only ones on the shore. Then I haltingly charged into the water, as it was, so close to the chaos that is what we’ve made, but really so removed. We were the only ones in sight.
The clenching freeze abated and I was able to jollily flop around in the water for a handful of minutes. And then I emerged, skin red and prickling, feeling great. I wasn’t cold anymore.
Tagged: camping, grand teton national park, grand tetons, lakes, photography, swimming, travel, united states, wyoming
Lovely! You have great photography skills! It’s lovely that you like to be out and about away from the tourists because that’s how one should embrace nature!
I hitchhiked and backpacked around Yellowstone but never made it to the Grand Tetons :( I’ve just started a new blog so if you’d take a look and drop some advice or comments, I’d appreciate it greatly :D
Thanks so much! The Grand Tetons are great – hopefully you can make it some day! I spent only a little bit of time in Yellowstone but it was enough to tell me I need to go back (during off-season, haha – it was so crowded!). Best of luck with the new blog.
I recommend the North East corner of Yellowstone. Slough creek is the campground you want to camp at!
Great article combined with stunning photos. They’re a real inspiration to me, as a travel blogging newbie. Enjoy your stay and I look forward to your next post!
“I go to them: they’re indifferent to me.” – love this observation!
It must be so great to camp here! :)
I love Grand Teton. I’m sad to be leaving it behind after a summer love affair. Beautiful photos!
Amazing photos, this place looks beautiful! I absolutely loved the read, felt like i was there. Beautiful writing. Beautiful photos :)
I was just at Grand Teton last month and I jumped in Jenny Lake after a long, hot day running/hiking! It was so refreshing!
Amazing photographs, nothing like nature! Beautifully written.
A cold swim is so good for the circulation. Never made it to the Tetons, but your vivid prose and photos took me there. Brrrrr.
I would love to visit the Tetons! Your pictures are fabulous. I love your blog, and I recently mentioned you on my list of favorite travel blogs on http://www.anamericanintheuk.com!
What nice words! Thank you so much – that felt really great to read. :)
Leah! I grew up in Jackson Hole…. I’m so glad you enjoyed it. Next time you go, let me know and you can maybe stay with my family.
Hey, cool! I will let you know, for sure.
Campsite pic is cool
Outstanding photography, I am transported! keep up the good work and happy travels!
As an avid camper I feel totally transported by your posts. Simply stunning photography.
This post has encouraged us to take a similar trip, loved the pics, thank you for sharing!
Hope you have a great trip!
your photography is simply breathtaking, I recently started my own blog, and shared pictures that I had taken, but I see I have a long way to go. :) Your stories are amazing too! Had me wishing I was at the same place.
Thanks so much! Best of luck with the new blog. Practice makes improvement. :)