With an incomparable natural backdrop and a deep well of curious visitors, the Jackson Hole area is the center of Wyoming’s guided-tour universe. With Yellowstone and the Tetons within easy reach, and a plethora of truly rugged terrain and actual wildlife, this Eden of singular flora and fauna offer a wealth of potentially life-changing expeditions, accessible to the explorer and casual family alike. Here are 10 of the best guided tours in Wyoming.
Among the many well-run and worthwhile guide companies in the state, Eco Tour & Wildlife Adventures is among the very best. With access to both Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Parks, the possibilities are endless. Families, couples or individuals can choose amongst day trips, two-day treks, full Yellowstone Loop adventures, and everything in between. Prices vary depending on length of journey, and number of people in party (deals are better with larger groups), but treks include high-quality meals and accommodations near the trailhead.
For around $200 per person, Brushbuck leads some of the most gorgeous and knowledge-ridden treks through Yellowstone. An experienced, friendly, professional and fun-loving guide team leads explorers through any number of summer or winter tours. Day trips, overnighters, two-day stop-overs and four day extended-stays: the options and price ranges can canter to any budget and group size. In particular, this tour company specializes in Old Faithful, Yellowstone Loop and wildlife excursions: seeing the immensity and power of a grizzly in person is a singular experience.
Each person has had a dream in which she is flying. That soaring state of pure liberation, floating and seeing all and effortlessly gliding on thermals, a patchwork of topography speeding-by below. Absorbing the Tetons via airplane is about as close to this experience as one can get. Be it for photography, simply viewing the scenery, or obtaining mountain-flying certifications, Fly Jackson Hole has provided a literal bird’s-eye view of the region. Packages are affordable and catered to whatever the clientele may decide: a single-person summit tour? A family flight? How about a romantic evening jaunt during sunset? Any option’s a fantastic one.
Be one a videographer/photographer requiring picturesque shots of incomparable wilderness, or a family on vacation, looking for some interaction with nature and wildlife, AlpenGlow is great locally-run guide operation. Founded by a photographer and wildlife aficionado, Brad Schwarm, the tours here are truly customized. With daily excursions into the wilds, Brad’s hands-on experience allows for personalized jaunts that are guaranteed to be successful in locating and viewing Teton fauna. Though smaller in scale, meaning fewer amenities and bells & whistles, the affordability and one-on-one tour schema is hard to top.
Another excellent product of a quality small-scale, local operation, Buffalo Roam strives to cater to intimate guided-tour experiences that reflect the passion of its married co-founders. The oft-apparent enthusiasm and environmental consciousness of the guides are unavoidable. This contagious atmosphere inevitably imprints the fun, educational and respectful journey onto anyone’s long-term memory. Single, multi-day, summer, winter, small or larger groups: anything is amenable to one of the customizable tours. Load up in the passenger vans, meet the fellow journeymen (if applicable), and let oneself get absorbed by a wilderness that’s seduced even the most hardened, for centuries.
It’s bad business, if not a crime, for local sports-centric businesses to not offer guided tours. With the twin assets of international renown and resort-size budgets, Jackson Hole happily embraces this tact. As a co-op of sorts, amalgamating a host of local experts and inventories, this ski resort pools resources to provide an immense menu of tour opportunities. Focused on mountain flora and conservation? Done. Want to see grizzlies up close? No problem. Prefer cruising a mountain bike through meadows of Indian Paintbrush and conifer? Easy. Professional photographers, outdoor-enthusiast families, small eco-tour groups…All are welcome, and all will be impressed with a lifetime of stories (and photos).
Yewww!! We are stoked for All Cal at Jackson Hole with #snowvember in full force at 82” this season and still coming down. Didn’t snag your spot for this epic trip and suffering major FOMO already? Bummerrrrrr... but no worries my dudes, SOS knows we’re the best which is why we’ve opened up WAITLIST spots for All Cal, so you can get stoked too. Sign up w/ the link in bio. Video courtesy Jackson Hole Mountain Resort.
Most unfortunately, actual “Grizzly Country” is an increasingly-diminishing reality. Luckily, there’re still oases of (hopefully not to become) bygone wildlife throughout rugged expanses of Idaho, Wyoming, Montana and Colorado. And the Yellowstone and Teton ecosystems around Jackson remain the last bastions for this incomparably beautiful, and inconceivably powerful, creature. For two decades, Grizzly Country Wildlife has provided experienced, knowledgeable guided tours, with high-end meals included that pleasantly bookend a day or two viewing the best of the state’s ruggedness. For better or worse, tour-goers are transported in luxury SUVs, comfortably jaunting from intimate outlook to intimate outlook, stopping and stepping-out to absorb the flora and fauna. Hopefully, such a professional-run tour will make clear: national parks are so integral to our national identity and crucial to our collective flourishing).
Another local institution with decades of outdoor-centric experience, this top-notch outfitter is the rafting establishment in town. With a wealth of resources, and a professionally-trained staff, this expertly-run, and nature-focused operation more than deserves its many “Best in Jackson” awards. Named for the unforgiving nature of a certain stretch of the Snake, Mad River does its best to tame the experience for a family scenic tour, or amplify the adventure for those seeking a river rush.
This small, supremely local operation has been pleasantly surprising visitors for over 40 years. Be them plunges into icy whitewater, or meandering on a scenic river tour, the Lewis & Clark crew brings all their experience to bear, ushering a unique, awe-inspiring (and fun!) tour of some of the most rugged wilds in the lower-48.
Row, row, row your boat! I can't tell you how good it was to get back on the river this summer. Blog post up about our trip with @lewisandclarkjh in Jackson, WY last July. Great company, beautiful section of river, fun friends, and a fabulous experience! Link in profile - check it out! #rafting #whitewaterrafting #lewisandclarkjh #jacksonhole
The longest-running of the quality rafting companies in the Jackson Hole area, the Barker-Ewing lineage has lived on the river. A seasoned river guide circa the 1950s, Frank Ewing joined the Barker Family to create a locally-run, small-group and nature-respecting rafting company. And while it may be hard to compete with larger, more well-funded operations, this family-run approach means intimate, informative adventures, delicious, home-made meals, and a safety record unmatched in the area.