Must-See Destination #6: Jackson Lake Natural Features

Here we’ll just focus on natural features that are on, or directly connect to, Jackson Lake. There’s a great many, drawing in visitors for days of enjoyment. This list is extensive and we could include *a lot* more, which we’ll do in future posts. This is enough to make your head spin and ask, “What to see? What to see?!” Do you have any favorites among these?

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1. The islands.

Jackson Lake has 15 of them! The largest is Elk Island, where you can spend an unforgettable night on the island. (How many people can boast about spending a night on an island in the middle of a lake at 6,000 feet up while surrounded by gorgeous mountains? Exactly.) Other notable islands include: Dollar Island next to Elk; Donoho Point, Marie, Badger, and Grassy in the southern section; and Moose Island, Cow, Indian, and Arizona, farther north.


2. The bays.

There are a number of bays on the lake. Colter Bay’s the busiest. Other bays include: Moran and Bearpaw in the southwest; Elk Island’s North Bar on its northern side; Spalding, which is the south end; Halfmoon and Little Mackinaw, which are next to Colter; and Sargents Bay toward the lake’s northeast.

3. The points.

Jackson Lake is ringed with some incredible points. Deadman Point in the south looks out to Spalding Bay. Wilkins Point is on the far northwest, opposite Fonda Point which is next to Lizard Creek’s mouth; and Hermitage Point in the southeast extends toward Elk Island.

4. The river and creeks.

Snake River dominates the lake. There are interesting creeks which connect with the lake as well. Glade Creek is in the north; Lizard and Arizona are on the north-eastern shore; East Fork Mountain Creek; Second, Third, and Pilgrim, in the southeast near the dam; and Watkins Ditch on the western shore.

5. The canyons.

All the canyons are spectacular and much talked about. They’re found on the western shore–working north, there’s Moran Canyon and Snowshoe by Moran Bay, Waterfalls, Colter, and then Webb.

6. The hills and lesser mountains.

These include: Harem Hill in the far northwest; Steamboat Mountain north of the lake; Mount Reid and Lunch Tree Hill on the eastern side; and Signal Mountain and the Jackson Point Overlook south of the dam.

Image: AmericanSouthwest; Airphotona; O.A.R.S.