Back to the Tetons, Colter Bay, Summer 2017

After a week in Madison we headed back to Colter Bay.

Solar Power

Our week in Madison was a good test of our solar power. We had no electric hookup there. We were in a partially shaded area, some days were partly cloudy, we had rain one evening. But for the week we generated about 17,000 watts of power going into the batteries from the sun. It was more than we used by a slim margin but enough to keep us in power. We did run our generator for two hours one morning in the middle of the week. The diesel fired boiler side of our Aqua Hot heating system had a thermostat die so it wouldn’t fire up. Fortunately the Aquahot will also heat the coach and water using electricity. So we turned on the generator, it powered the Aqua Hot which heated water and did some battery charging as a bonus.

Our goal was to be able to go 4-5 days without running the generator, just using solar power. In Madison it worked!

Colter Bay

Colter Bay is on the east side of Jackson Lake about 2/3 of the way north through the park. There is a marina where you can rent motorboats, canoes or kayaks, buy a fishing license or schedule one of several scenic boat trips. There is an RV campground with hookups, a campground without hookups, rustic log cabins or even more rustic tent cabins for rent. No lodge. There is a visitors center, a grocery and supplies store, a laundry, a gift store, a couple of restaurants and stables where you could schedule a horseback ride. There are several trail heads right here so plenty of hiking without having to drive anywhere. Leek’s Marina is just a couple miles up the lake and they have a good pizza place.

Without a lodge here most of the people staying here are not the tour bus types. The tour busses stop here but don’t stay long. So even on a busy day it never seems congested or crowded.

The RV campground is pretty roomy for a National Park RV campground.

Shady most of the day.

There are neighbors but this is a nice place. As campgrounds go it is somewhat expensive but for the location it is OK with us. Probably 1/3 of the spaces empty out each day and refill by the end of the day. It is full from May through the end of the season in early October when it and most of the park closes for the winter.

Being right next to Jackson Lake is one of our favorite things about this campground.

A short walk down the path and you are on the beach (round smooth rocks). It was a frequent destination in the afternoon.

Maybe not quite Hawaii like but we have our beach chairs just in case. It is usually fairly calm with a warm afternoon sun. At nearly 7,000 ft the sun felt pretty intense.

The water sparkled in the late afternoon sun which went behind the mountains long before it got dark giving us an extended twilight each evening.

And up the lake to the north, a warm evening glow.

Many days saw clouds roll across the mountains from west to east. Some days there was thunder. We had a bit of rain one evening and a sprinkle here and there. Usually by the time the sun was close to the mountains the clouds had gone away.

It is hard to describe this place, the way we feel when we are here. This part of the park feels and looks different from other parts. We like it here. It is unlike anywhere else we have been.

The mountains are very close, they just come right up out of the lake.

We were here two years ago as well. Take a look back at that post. I hope you have an opportunity to visit the Tetons and see just how wonderful this place is.

More later,

Roger and Susan

2 thoughts on “Back to the Tetons, Colter Bay, Summer 2017”

  1. Roger and Susan please keep up the great work on pictures and narratives of the beautiful places you go. We have been throu many but not all via motorcycle, but have not taken the time to learn and enjoy for an extended period of time. That is the real way to experience the West, as you know.
    Frank Green


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