Granite Falls in Wyoming has a wide waterfall, natural hot springs, and a nearby campground – all about 9 miles down a dirt road.
Where is Granite Falls in Wyoming?
Granite Fall is located in Bridger-Teton National Forest between Pinedale and Jackson in Wyoming. It’s 1 hour 21 minutes (61 miles) from Pinedale and 53 minutes (34 miles) from Jackson.
Granite Falls Waterfall Directions
It is located near the end of Granite Creek Road from Forest Road 30500 and Highway 189. This dirt road gets very bumpy but an AWD vehicle can suffice. The dirt road is about 9 miles to the parking lot of Granite Falls and the free hot springs and can take about an hour to drive.
Granite Hot Springs Pool is an established hot spring pool just a little further down at the end of the road. This pool has a fee to soak: $12/ adult and $7/ child.
Pro Tip – if you’re coming on Hwy 189 from the South, the right turn onto the dirt Forest Rd 30500 is a very sharp turn so approach it very slowly!
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Granite Falls Waterfall
Granite Falls in Wyoming is a wide and large waterfall sourced from Granite Creek – it almost reminds me of a mini Dettifoss in Iceland.
The hike to Granite Falls is very short – I wouldn’t even call it a hike. It’s like a 2-minute walk to walk down to the river; you can even see the waterfall from the parking area.
Once you reach the river, you can head to the left and go up next to the waterfall a little bit, hang out along/ in the river, or ford the river to access a free natural hot spring.
Granite Falls Hot Spring (the free one)
Not everyone who visits the enormous waterfall knows about the natural hot spring located right next to it. In fact, you can even see the free hot spring pool once you reach the end of the trail at the river – just look across for the small waterfall with steam.
Getting to the free hot spring
The natural hot spring is located on the opposite side of the wide river and crossing it is possible in a few areas; however, the rocks on the bottom of the river can be very slippery and the river can flow strongly and be deep, so please be very careful and cross at your own risk and safety.
Granite Falls hot spring
There is only one hot spring pool and it is where the small hot spring waterfall flows in. The source comes from Granite Hot Springs Pool which is a paid hot spring located just above the waterfall. This free hot spring is a very small rock pool so it varies in size depending on how it is put together which can vary every year after the snow melts.
You can adjust the water temperature by blocking off access of the river that flows into it; if you leave it open even just a little, I felt like the temperature of the pool was very inconsistent with some hot spots and many cooler spots. You simply block off access by stacking rocks where the river flows in.
The pool is obviously going to be a lot warmer closer to the waterfall source, and if you leave the pool closed off from the river, the entire pool does get very hot.
The hot spring waterfall is a bit too hot to touch – it actually reminds me of the hot spring waterfall along the Colorado River which is only accessible by a watercraft.
Because the size of the hot spring can change, sometimes it can only fit less than a handful of people, and sometimes it fits a little more. I don’t think it can fit anymore a handful of adults though without feeling too packed.
It was actually crowded with 4 adults when we first arrived, so we went back to the car to wait for them to leave (it also looked like thunderstorms were rolling in) and we ended up having the hot spring to ourselves for awhile before other adults and kids came to join (yes, that meant we had to do the river crossing twice which was not my favorite part given the strong current).
The depth of the pool also varies. It’s typically somewhat shallow but can be dug out a little so you can sit more deeply. The party that was in there before us kindly brought a shovel and dug it a little deeper.
There’s a nice bench along the side of the wall which makes for a great seat. Because the hot spring is right next to the waterfall and river, you can go back and forth and do a cold plunge.
Bring a lightweight towel that you can wrap around yourself so you don’t need to hike back wet and uncomfortable. Matador makes a really good travel towel – click here to shop.
The other small rock pool you see a little further down from the river was not hot when we went, very shallow, and a little gross looking. You’re better off doing a cold plunge in the river than sitting in this one.
Granite Falls Hot Springs in Winter
In the winter, the road is covered in snow and you can only access the hot springs by snowmobile, dog sled, fat biking, or skis.
Where to stay near Granite Falls in Wyoming
Granite Creek Campground is a first come, first serve, paid campground just a short distance before you reach the hot springs. It is the only established campground off of this road but there are a few turnouts to pull over for dispersed camping.
Accommodations in Jackson, WY
- Cache House is a cool hostel-style accommodation where you can book a queen size bunk bed that sleeps two if you’re not wanting to get a whole room. There are lockers for your belongings, blackout drapes for each bunk, and free wifi. There’s a shared lobby, kitchen, and access to showers.
*Highly recommended for solo or budgeted travelers*
- Cowboy Village Resort has individual cabins you can rent near Jackson town square, as well as rooms for rent in the main lodge. They offer a free ski shuttle during the ski season, free parking, free wifi, a lobby fireplace, an indoor pool, and more. It’s a clean and comfortable accommodation for families and groups.
- Flat Creek Inn is a standard roadside motel located on the outskirts of town in a nature reserve, but there is a market on-site for convenience. It uses 100% renewable energy, has free wifi and free parking, an in-room refrigerator and microwave, and clean rooms with a friendly staff. During certain months, you might even see elk outside the property!
Accommodations in Pinedale, WY
- Granite Peak Lodge is a basic motel with free wifi, AC, and parking. It’s basic but kind of cute on the outside like a little cabin!
- Sundance Motel in Pinedale has free breakfast and is pet-friendly