December 9, 2020

Grand Tetons + Yellowstone, Wyoming Babymoon

I’m Stephanie, a wedding + lifestyle photographer based in Destin, Florida and Warrenton, Virginia. Whether I’m by the mountains in Virginia or the ocean on the Florida Gulf Coast, my soul feels at home, surrounded by rural living and the raw beauty of nature. I genuinely love what I do, and feel so passionate to share the enthusiasm and joy of these celebrations with you!

light chaser, dreamer, go-getter.

@stephaniemessickphoto

serving

Northern
Virginia

florida Panhandle

&

find insperation

Gallery images

get to know me

weddings

engagements

lifestyle

Grand Tetons + Yellowstone, Wyoming Babymoon

Have you been to the gorgeous National Parks out in Wyoming? Even though we only spent four-days adventuring through the Grand Tetons and Yellowstone, I have to admit that the Tetons took my breath AWAY! I also found that it was more of our type of adventure with the hikes and incredible views. Yellowstone was perfect for sightseeing and animal sightings, though! But another favorite part of our week-long trip was hanging out with Alex’s side of the family in what I like to call the “Wyoming Outback” … AKA, his grandparent’s house! Haha! This “babymoon” trip to the Grand Tetons and Yellowstone, Wyoming, was just what Alex and I needed this yearΒ before the baby arrives! πŸ™‚

Babymoon

After a crazy year dealing with this pandemic, I know we weren’t the only ones itching to get out and explore! And with the country borders closed, we saw it as an opportunity to go somewhere in the states! Alex was a little hesitant about the crazy hikes I mapped out and put on my bucket list for our Wyoming trip, though. With the altitude change from 26′ above sea level to 6,237′ to only then go on a long hike the next day didn’t seem appropriate for a 30-week pregnant woman. But I had confidence in my ability to conquer it while listening to my body. I really surprised him (and probably pushed my body a little too much) by tackling a 12+ strenuous hike with an elevation gain of 2,980′! Although, I had to take breaks every 5-minutes to regulate my heart rate to ensure the baby got enough oxygen. I was so proud of myself and the hikes we conquered!!! It really shaped our trip to be an incredible adventure!

Anyways, there’s a lot of fun stuff to share with you below from the Grand Tetons and Yellowstone, Wyoming!!! I’m so grateful for Alex’s family and their hospitality. It really made our YEAR! <3 One of my favorite trips of my lifetime, and I cannot wait to visit again in the future! Who said that you have to go overseas to have a great vacation? πŸ™‚

Grand Teton National Park

Alex wrote a great blog post about the best sunrise spots in Grand Teton National Park!! Check it out HERE!!!

Arrival

We flew in just in time to see the sun setting behind the Tetons! After checking into Mountain Modern Lodge, we headed to grab a bite at Hand Fire Pizza (known as the best pizza in Jackson Hole β€” We loved it!!)!

Sunrise at The Moulton Barn + Schwabacher Landing

We woke up at the crack of dawn to watch the sunrise at The Moulton Barn. It was my FAVORITE sunrise ever, although I was quite cold!!! As the golden light hit the top of the Tetons, we were all in awe. πŸ™‚ While we were there, we made friends with some girls who happened to be from Richmond, VA! Small world. πŸ™‚

Just as we were leaving, we caught a glance of a MOOSE walking towards us with the sun rising behind it… Amazing!!! I thought that morning could not get any better!!! Haha! After the moose was scared off by tourists, we headed to Schwabacher Landing to enjoy the late sunrise before heading toΒ Cafe GenevieveΒ for breakfast in Jackson Hole! Perfect time to warm up before our day hike!

Jenny Lake + Inspiration Point + Hidden Falls + Cascade Canyon Trail

The great thing about this hike from Jenny Lake is that you can go as long or as short as you want. Although, we didn’t have much choice to take a “short route” because the ferry was closed for the season anyway. Ha! We decided our goal was to make it into Cascade Canyon, and we did it!! The hiking trail was very crowded when we were visiting, so that caught us by surprise. But at least we didn’t have to worry about bears with the amount of traffic. πŸ˜‰ It was gorgeous scenery as we made our way around Jenny Lake to the top of Inspiration Point!! After visiting Hidden Falls, the crowds died down because the majority of hikers turned around. That left us finding a secluded spot for our yummy lunch! We just picked up some deli sandwiches from Jackson Hole and it was the perfect pick-me-up for the next part of the hike to Cascade Canyon!

Cascade Canyon was breathtaking with minimal hikers around. πŸ™‚ We wandered along the trail for a couple of miles before turning around, but it was worth the extra steps!! We made it back to Jenny Lake just in time for the beautiful sunset, and we spotted a fox running around close by. It was so refreshing being out in nature again. πŸ™‚ We both missed the mountains!!!

To conclude the busy, active day, we grabbed dinner at the Gun Barrell. I was SOOOOO tired and exhausted that I could barely eat my dinner! The time change caught up to us (or maybe just me). Haha!

Sunrise at Snake River Overlook

If you’re familiar with Snake River Overlook, you know that this is a famous location in Grand Teton National Park! In fact, Ansel Adams took an iconic photo here. πŸ™‚ So naturally, we were surrounded by other photographers at sunrise! During our visit, there were a lot of wildfires going on in the surrounding states that carried smoke into Wyoming. You might notice that haze below!! During our visit, we heard some animals in the distance and finally caught a glance of elk swimming across the river below us. πŸ™‚

Because I’m a fan of breakfast and warmer temps (HA!), we drove back to Jackson Hole to warm up and fill up our tummies! I was SO excited to tryΒ Persephone Bakery, and it was worth the wait!!! We filled with tasty treats and saved some of their famous croissants for our day hike. πŸ™‚ This place is a MUST!

Surprise + Amphitheater Lake Trail

We were warned to have bear spray on us for this hike β€” I thought, “Oh, gosh, what are we getting ourselves into?!” Fortunately, we learned that if you go to the hotel lost and found and ask if they have bear spray, you can have it for your visit for free! πŸ™‚ Much better than renting it from the airport or buying a $60 bottle!!

THIS HIKE, THOUGH… Has to be my favorite!!! It was physically challenging but so worth it! After climbing 2,980′ for 12+ miles (round trip), I ended up loving the experience. From the views to the change of scenery to the blue/green lakes, we recommend this to seasoned hikers!!! When we got to the top, we spotted the second lake where we decided to camp out for lunch/and ourΒ Persephone BakeryΒ croissants. πŸ™‚ And randomly, while we were enjoying our pastry, a CHIPMUNK ran up to me and climbed my shoe!!!! It made my heart SO happy to be that close to one after trying so hard to take a photo of just one chipmunk on our hikes!! Haha! And then, suddenly, I had one hanging out with me! Crazy. πŸ™‚ It just made my day (as Alex)! Ha! Take me back to Wyoming!!!

Chapel of the Transfiguration + Glamping

Needless to say, after our long day hike, we were wiped!!! We quickly stopped by the Chapel of the Transfiguration, which was beautiful β€” I cannot imaging having a church with a view like that! Amazing!!! And then we were off to check into our glamping safari tent atΒ Moose Creek Ranch! SO fun!!! Although VERY cold!! While we were in Victor, Idaho, we stopped by a brewery and enjoyed dinner at Big Hole BBQ. When we got back to our tent, we lit a fire and enjoyed our beer (root beer for me!) and then experienced the coldest night. HA! We were newbies using the safari tent fire stove. πŸ˜‰ But it was still an incredible experience!

Sunrise at Oxbow Bend

Before departing Victor, Idaho, we fueled up for the day with breakfast at Butter β€” SOOOOO good!!! And then we stopped by Oxbow Bend which was DEFINITELY a favorite spot to check out, especially with the bright yellow fall leaves! We said goodbye to Grand Teton National Park and headed north. πŸ™‚

Yellowstone

Upper Falls of the Yellowstone

A beautiful spot with different vantage points to take photos!!

Geysers + Old Faithful

I will say that as pretty as geysers are, they do NOT smell good at all from the sulfur!!! HAHA! Unfortunately, the smell brought me back to eating the “century-old egg” in Thailand where I got sick. Yikes!!! But look how beautiful and colorful these are!!! So unique and incredible! Also, it’s pretty crazy that we were standing on a supervolcano!!!

Animal Life

Just a week prior, there were two grizzly bears spotted fighting over food β€” Too bad we missed that craziness, but I’m glad we didn’t spot a grizzly close by. πŸ˜‰ We saw plenty of elk and bison, though!!! And they also loved walking on the road too. Haha!! At least I felt safe inside the car. πŸ˜‰ I’m glad we had some awesome photo ops!

The “Wyoming Outback”

After visiting the Grand Tetons and Yellowstone, Wyoming, we headed east to Buffalo where we enjoyed these adventures!!

Four Wheeling Adventures!!!

We LOVED taking some time to enjoy the fresh air and beautiful Wyoming views just outside of Alex’s grandparent’s home! And there isn’t a better way to experience it than by four-wheeling around. πŸ™‚ We rode a 3+ mile loop spotting hundreds of deer, antelope, and even some elk! Seriously, what world was I living in? Haha! It was so cool driving the four-wheeler one evening with an antelope running right next to me! Crazy!!! And again, the scenery was breathtaking!!!

Bridal Veil Falls

One evening, Andrew, Kate, Amelia (our precious niece), Alex and I adventured out to hike the Bridal Veil Falls. πŸ™‚ It was beautiful and a fun family activity to do together!!! Amelia did SO great in the baby carrier too! We love these memories with our Schloe Travels crew. <3

Family Time

Spending the remaining time of our Wyoming trip with family was the best!!! Some favorite memories include exploring the outdoors, four-wheeling, hanging out on the front porch with hot chocolate (yum!!) or at the isolated cabin, skipping rocks, playing baseball with acorns and a stick (HA!), checking out Grandaddy’s car projects, and so much more!!! Oh, and we cannot forget all of the precious, most adorable moments with Amelia! She entertained us the entire time with her smile and laughs. <3 We are so grateful for family and the time we got with them!!!

Grand Tetons and Yellowstone, Wyoming was not only a great getaway for family time but a great outdoor adventure!!! I hope this inspires you to get out west at some point! It exceeded my expectations!!! πŸ™‚ Also, be sure to watch out for a blog post about this trip on Schloe Travels where we will share all of the inside tips to plan your Wyoming trip!!! <3

Reply...

featured

as seen in

as seen in