Pets allowed
Not Allowed
Elevation Gain
80.00 ft (24.38 m)
Trail type
3.00 mi (4.83 km)
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From the Coulter Bay area, there are several short and long hikes near Jackson Lake that don’t involve a lot of climbing but have great views of the lake and Tetons. One popular choice is the loop that sweeps near Heron Pond and Swan Lake that makes a great couple-hour adventure.

The trail starts at the south end of the visitor center parking lot and follows the shore of Jackson Lake with several short trails down to the water for a quick photo. At the first junction the trail splits for Heron Pond to the right or Swan Lake to the left; either way works. Going toward Heron Pond first, the trail splits again in a short distance with a sign for “Lake Overlook” on the right fork. This spur climbs a short hill where the trees have grown to obscure views of the lake, but there is a nice view of the mountains from the top. Continuing on the main trail, Heron Pond is soon reached with gorgeous views of the pond and Jackson Lake just beyond. This trail continues another 3 miles to Hermitage Point, but the left turn for Swan Lake is just at the end of Heron Pond. The views of Swan Lake are intermittent but pretty, and the trail eventually returns to the split and the short trail back to the Coulter Bay Marina and the visitor center.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)




Parking Pass

National Park Pass


Flat and easy. Nice views.



Trailhead Elevation

6,800.00 ft (2,072.64 m)


Big vistas



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