Grand Teton Cascade Loop


New Member
Jan 11, 2024
I have a couple picks this year from the stressful "grab a campsite as fast as you can and get pissed off" on
North Fork and Outlier campsites in early September.
I have followed a few threads from the past on here, as it is not my first time in the Tetons. I have just never made it to the Northern Side of the Crest Trail. Last trip, we had to bug out via Cascade Canyon, missed the last boat ride and hiked around the lake back to Jenny.
I guess my question would be on North Fork. I have read that the Northern Campsites have the best Photography view points. Would Mica Lake be a consideration or worth the extra steep hike up for the Sunset Photos or are the Campsites below it just as good.

Thanks for your input,
North Fork Cascade Canyon has probably the best (designated) sites in the park. September is a great time, too - not as many folks out there - though the Cascade Canyon/Lake Solitude trails are some of the heaviest traveled backcountry trails in general.

I'm no photographer, but I think you'll want to hike north a bit from the camping zone towards Lake Solitude for the best shots. Your views of Grand Teton will be obstructed by the ribs coming off The Wigwams up at Mica Lake - though it's a worthwhile hike in its own right and you'll have more "solitude" there than at Lake Solitude. :lol:

The trail up towards Paintbrush Divide has pretty stunning views of the Grand, if you don't feel you're quite high enough at Lake Solitude - but the whole canyon is pretty incredible, so I think you're safe just feeling it out once you get out there.

Should be a fun trip! My wife and I did the Cascade/Paintbrush Canyon loop as a day hike on one of our first ever trips up to the GYE, so that route always brings back fond memories.

On a sidenote, if you use CalTopo, the "viewshed" and "sun exposure" tools are great for planning shots like this.