Oxbow Bend Information & Guide
About the Oxbow Bend Pullout
The Oxbow Bend pullout is just one mile east of Jackson Lake Junction on the US Highway 26/89/191. It is on the way to Yellowstone, and is a great stop if you are just touring Grand Teton as well. An oxbow bend in a river is formed when the river meanders, or curves sharply, due to erosion of the bank from water flow. After a long period of time, the meander becomes very curved, and the water course widens and gets shallower. The slow-moving water provides habitat for fish including suckers and trout that are food for river otters, ospreys, bald eagles, American white pelicans and common mergansers. You can look for swimming beavers and muskrats, and even the moose that browse on willows at the water's edge. Elk occasionally graze in the open aspen groves uphill to the east.
Use binoculars, spotting scopes or long lenses for close views and photographs. Whether you are in your vehicle or on foot, you must maintain a distance of at least 100 yards from bears and wolves, and 25 yards from all other wildlife.
Watch for large animals on the road. Drive slowly at night. The speed limit on US Highway 26/89/191 is 45 mph from 30 minutes after sunset to 30 minutes before sunrise. Elk, bison, and mule deer frequently migrate at night and may be difficult to see. Moose use roads as travel corridors. Hitting a large animal at highway speeds has resulted in fatal accidents. Careful driving protects you and the wildlife. Always wear your seatbelt.