Our trip to Grand Teton National Park was great. The past three years we have taken a trip to some high-elevation lake for J's birthday. This year we decided to incorporate a visit to a National Park we hadn't yet seen.
We knew we were off to a good start when 1) Doodle napped pretty much the whole way from Logan to Jackson, and 2) we saw a herd of bison as we neared our campground. This herd would stay near the road to our campsite for the duration of our visit, making for a happy Doodle whenever we drove that road.
The first night our friend FunEllen joined us, as she and J signed up for a rock climbing class the following morning. Doodle had fun trying to figure FunEllen out, and enjoyed being in the company of someone who makes up songs about nearly anything. The one not-so-wonderful moment of the day came at bedtime, when the campers across the road had lanterns a-blazin' and Doodle decided that no way, no how could she sleep out under the stars with lights like that around. J set the tent up in record speed while I tried to comfort Doodle (and tried to quietly reassure myself that not everyone in the campground hated us...yet).
The next morning there were moose in our campground. A pair of youngsters, the moose just meandered around and ate foliage. Doodle thought they were the greatest thing ever, and continued to talk about the "moo" for the rest of the trip. We were amused when one moose actually sniffed its reflection on the car across the road - the car that belonged to the late lantern people. When they woke up later we approached them, and asked if they had heard the moose by their tent. We then showed them pictures of the moose right next to their car. They were shocked, and had no idea that the moose were so close. That's what they get for staying up late with bright lanterns that disturb my baby! :-P
J and FunEllen left early that morning to meet their guide for a fun-filled day of climbing tutorial stuff. Doodle and I packed things up, then headed up to Jenny Lake for some exploring. One of the most popular hikes in the park is on the far side of Jenny Lake; the first half mile takes you to Hidden Falls, and the following half mile gets you up to Inspiration Point. There are destinations beyond that, but most people call it good once they get inspired. Anyhow. There are trails around the lake, but there's also a shuttle boat service across the lake. With Doodle's interest in boats, coupled with my desire to get to Inspiration Point before the hordes and to get back around the lake before J's climbing session ended, I decided to buy a one-way ticket across the lake. That meant boating over, hiking up, hiking down then hiking the 2.2 miles back around the lake, hopefully while Doodle napped. We embarked.
The boatride was easy and uneventful. Doodle was in the hiking pack on my back, so I really don't know what her facial expressions were while riding the boat. Once back on land, we trekked up to Hidden Falls. Some nice people offered to take our picture with the falls:
Then we continued on to Inspiration Point. The hike itself was great. The people though...ugh. Nearly every other person who passed us commented on either A) what a "trooper" I was for carrying Doodle up there, B) how she must be pretty heavy, or C) asked when their turn was to be carried like that. Wha?! I mostly just shrugged/smiled/looked at them like they had two heads, and continued on my way. I mean, really. Does it help someone who is carrying a heavy load to say "My, that looks heavy!" Nope. It does not. And really, I know she's over 20 lbs. I knew that before we started hiking, and took it into consideration. I'm really nowhere near SuperMom for carrying my daughter less than a mile up hill to see a pretty overlook. REALLY.
We made it up to Inspiration Point, which is quite pretty (see above). Then we hiked back down, encountering waaaaaay more people than one would typically like to encounter while hiking in the great outdoors. Especially when they're all full of helpful comments like those above. *sigh* Fortunately the trail back around Jenny Lake was more isolated, and Doodle and I got some peace and quiet. We saw a deer bedded down by the trail, which she thought was pretty awesome. However, no napping occurred. She was just dozing when a loud guy approaching from the opposite direction hollered "hey, your driver's asleep at the wheel!" to me. He even had kids with him, who I had assumed were his own. Perhaps not, if he's idiot/jerk enough to bellow that the kid is sleeping while standing right next to said sleeping kid. Grrrrrrr! Doodle woke up, and proceeded to fuss, whine or insist on walking herself for the last mile or so back around the lake. Gee, thanks loud guy!
The hike around the lake was really pretty, and I'm glad we took that route. We made it back to the car fine. Doodle finally passed out for a few minutes in my arms in the middle of the gift shop, where I proceeded to purchase things quietly without dropping her while reaching for my wallet in my back pocket. Mom skillz, yo. We then drove to Jackson to (in theory) hit some thrift stores, then meet J and FunEllen. Thankfully Doodle fell asleep on the drive there, as she really needed it. But that meant staying in the warm car for the duration of her nap. Ugh. So I sat for two hours in the car in Jackson. At least I had a book to read.