The area around the ranch is some of the most beautiful in the world, and a visit to the ranch would not be complete without wandering the landscape, whether ambling via trail, scrabbling up a hill, or meandering through a verdant meadow. However, even when exploring by day, there are many items we strongly encourage bringing on your journeys.
- Daypack or rucksack to comfortably carry your gear
- Water or microfiltration system
- Hat with brim – preferably with wide brim, but a ball cap will do
- Sunscreen – remember at higher altitudes, skin burns much more quickly!
- Sunglasses with UV blocking, even during winter weather (to protect against snow blindness)
- Snacks, such as high-energy trail mix, granola bars, jerky or dried fruit
- Insect repellent: use a product that repels deer flies and ticks
- Bear spray – a must have for all area backcountry hikers. View the Yellowstone page on bear encounters for additional details
- Pocket knife, preferably with a blade of 3 – 5 inches
- Whistle and/or signaling mirror
- Basic first aid kit (tailored for the length of your trip and size of your group)
- Map & compass (your mobile phone may not receive reception in all wilderness areas)
- Orienteering instruction, so you can safely navigate
- Extra clothing, based on anticipated weather, including: flannel shirt or sweatshirt, jacket, rain gear
- Sturdy hiking boots, preferably waterproof
- Toilet paper and/or tissues
- Matches and/or lighter (please check with us at the ranch or ask a park ranger about fire restrictions in the area you plan on visiting)
Here are a few extra items that may not be necessary, but are handy to have while hiking around the area:
- Handheld GPS: unlike a mobile phone, when set up properly a handheld GPS device can provide very accurate information about speed, elevation, location, direction of travel, and much more, regardless of cell signal strength. However, since electronic devices may malfunction, a map and compass should always be carried.
- Sandals: during summer months, a pair of good water sandals is recommended for crossing water, which can reduce chance of blistering from hiking wet boots if your footwear is not waterproof, and provides better traction than crossing in bare feet.
- Multi-tool: if your pocket knife also has scissors, a screwdriver, tweezers, and other handy tools, it will most likely be to your benefit!
- Bandana or kerchief: multi-use item that can be used as sun protection, to absorb moisture, clean or dry items, protect from dust or other inhalants, etc.
- There is a reason they are part of a cowboy’s uniform!
- Lip balm with sunscreen: helps prevent chapping and sunburn.
- Extra socks: especially if you don’t bring sandals, but also can be helpful to bring a thinner or thicker pair in case your original pair is not adequate for the journey.
- Headlamp: if your day hike takes longer than expected, you will be glad to have a way to light your path while keeping your hands free. LED versions tend to have much longer battery life.
- Thermal space blanket or bivy: this item can keep you warm and dry, is lightweight and compact enough to carry even in a daypack.
- Trekking poles: great for adding extra stability, especially when travelling over rough terrain or water. If you are carrying a heavy pack they are particularly helpful.
Please don’t forget to plan on carrying out anything you bring, including food waste. Help us keep our environment clean for future visitors. Learn more about Leave No Trace.
We hope you enjoy your stay while in the amazing Tetons. Please let us know if you have questions, would like trail or scenery recommendations, or need anything at all! You can also visit our Adventures page for information about our guides, tours, and activities.