The man whose Secret Service code name is Eagle stepped away from his motorcade and handed a park ranger $25 for a Golden Eagle pass, good for one year's entry to all U.S. national parks.
And shortly afterward, President Clinton and his family were exercising their hiking boots along the shores of Jenny Lake, among the lodgepole pine and Engelman spruce, admiring the transparent water and views of the Teton spires.The president celebrated his birthday on Saturday, and as the hike began, a reporter called out, "Is it any harder to hike now that you're 49?"
"Yeah," the president replied, and for the next several steps feigned fatigue and leaned for support on the shoulder of his wife, first lady Hillary Rodham Clinton.
But he had the identical reaction to his surroundings as the dozens of tourists who exchanged waves with him on his Jenny Lake walk.
"It's a great thing for our country to have something like this. Fabulous!"
One day past his birthday, Clinton heard the birthday song again at a tiny chinked-log Chapel of the Transfiguration with windows in the nave that frame the Tetons.
Some 40 people who could not find seats in the church Sunday leaned through the windows to sing "Amazing Grace' and take part in a service that the Rev. Franklin Johnson said was "like every other Sunday - almost."
But there was a birthday prayer for the president and a moment of silence for the three American officials killed in an accident in Bosnia on Saturday.
In four days last week, Clinton played a total 91 holes of golf.
But from what the first lady said, she is allowing him just one more golf outing before the family begins an agenda of geysers, mountain paths, rodeos and maybe even camping.
The president was overheard making plans with his daughter, Chelsea, for a hike on Monday along a canyon skirting the north side of Grand Teton. Then the first lady put her foot down.
Apparently determined not to be a golf widow for the entire vacation, she said, "No, you can't do it tomorrow; you have your last golf game tomorrow."
She later softened that a bit saying, "Well, that's the plan; I'm not going to hold him to it, but that's the plan."