Barker-Ewing Scenic Float Trips in Grand Teton National Park

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The Last of the Great Wild Places book cover, Tom MangelsenOur Scenic Float trips are unbelievably photogenic. Here’s your chance to show off your fantastic photos from a float trip and have the chance to win a signed copy of world-renowned nature photographer Tom Mangelsen’s latest book. You could also see your photo(s) featured on our website or brochure! Here’s how to enter….

Book Your Scenic Float Trip in Grand Teton National Park

When you’re looking for “Things to Do in Jackson Hole”, consider booking a raft trip with Barker-Ewing Scenic Float Trips, you’ll be rafting with Jackson Hole’s best!

Our original 10-mile Snake River Scenic Float Trips operate wholly within Grand Teton National Park. Wild nature surrounds you on these river rafting trips, floating beneath the Grand Tetons in an area untouched by human development for generations. Barker-Ewing’s experienced river guides offer extensive information on:

  • Grand Teton National Park and Jackson Hole geology
  • Animals and their habitats
  • Jackson Hole and Grand Teton National Park history

Snake River headwaters are a part of the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System. Barker-Ewing is honored to be rafting the only stretch of the Snake River in Jackson Hole, designated as “scenic”.

Our high level of safety and customer satisfaction supports our reputation as the Best in Jackson Hole.

Fly baby fly! The baby eagles are fledging.

Barker-Ewing, Rafting, Wildlife

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fledgling eaglesThose of us who live around here sometimes take the bald eagles for granted. We forget that they’re not common in all parts of the country. But we never tire of seeing them and their majestic white heads and enormous wingspans. This time of the year is particularly wonderful as we’re regularly seeing eagles (it’s not uncommon to see 5-12 in one trip) and we’re seeing the fledglings.

So what’s a fledgling or fledging? Fledging is when the baby eagles, aka eaglets, learn to fly. It comes from the term fledge which refers to when the babies have acquired the feathers and wing muscles necessary for flight. The first flight usually happens around 10 to 13 weeks after hatching so what we’re seeing now are the babies who hatched sometime in June.

Once the young eagles have fledged, they remain around the nest for 4 or 5 weeks, taking short flights while their primary feathers grow and strengthen. Their parents still provide all of their food.

Recent sightings

Rarely do you see baby bald eagles but we’re seeing them pretty much on every trip. We currently have 4 nests on our stretch of the river, although only 2 of the nests can be seen from the rafts. In the past two weeks, we have taken 186 trips. We have seen 1,446 eagles (958 adults and 488 immatures) on those trips, which brings the average to 7.77 eagles per trip. There was only 1 of the 186 trips that did NOT see an eagle! We have seen as many as 14 individual eagles on one trip during the past 2 weeks.

What we’re seeing as they fledge are their attempts at flight and fishing and learning life on their own. It’s pretty fun to watch. Currently we’re also seeing multiple nesting pairs along the river which is unusual. The female eagle generally lays one to three eggs. Sometimes three chicks will hatch but competition in the nest is so high that generally only one or two will survive. But we are seeing more of the multiples.

The adult eagles tend to fish early in the morning to feed their babies. So the 8 or 10 o’clock floats can sometime catch this action. Not an early riser? Not to worry. As you can tell by the numbers above, it’s extremely rare not to see eagles on a trip.

So if you’ve always wanted to see baby eagles, now is the time. But they’ll be flying off on their own soon so don’t wait too long to book a trip.

…continue reading Fly baby fly! The baby eagles are fledging.