The month of May brought showers, snow and sun. Snow melted in the valley and green danced slowly up the hills. By mid-month, Aspen trees produced leaves that shimmered brightly in the morning sun and spring flowers bloomed at lower elevations. Josie’s Ridge near Snow King offered great trail options for hiking and biking.
Many hills around Jackson Hole are closed to human access during the winter months. On May 1, winter closures end and people flock to the hills in search of antlers shed by Male members of the deer family, specifically deer, moose and elk. The third weekend of May was the 52nd Annual Boy Scout Elk Antler Auction on the Jackson Town Square. This year, 10,320 pounds of antlers were sold at the auction. Read more: https://buckrail.com/boy-scouts-antler-auction-rakes-in-big-money-for-racks/
Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) has been identified in Jackson Hole and recreationists are being asked to help by reporting any odd behaviors observed in members of the deer family. CWD is a fatal neurological disease similar to Mad Cow Disease.
Our native mule deer migrate hundreds of miles each year, which significantly increases the spread of the disease. A statewide committee was created by the Wyoming Game and Fish department to revise the current CWD plan to limit the spread. The question, “is this a threat to humans” exists, so there is concern for human safety and the survival of these native animals. Read more: https://wgfd.wyo.gov/Wildlife-in-Wyoming/More-Wildlife/Wildlife-Disease/Chronic-Wasting-Disease
Take the time to sit and be. This is a wonderful time of year to watch nature exploding with life. Stay in the moment with your breath. Let the energy of spring rejuvenate you. Tell your thoughts “not now” and focus on your breath, in and out. Give it five minutes. Notice how this practice brings you peace and ease as you connect to the support of the natural world. You might notice the wind in the leaves, the gurgle of a stream, activity of birds nest-building, the spring flowers in the meadow… all available to you to observe. Allow yourself five minutes to simply “be” and nurture a state of peace and ease.
What’s in the Woods
5/3 Snow King: Great Horned Owl hooting at dusk
5/3 Wilson, Highway 22: herd of cow elk
5/4 Wilson: daffodils blooming
5/4 Wilson: calliope hummingbird
5/5 Highway 22: both osprey and geese on nests
5/6 Jackson, near Snow King: three sapsuckers tapping on power pole
5/8 First hue of green on the Aspen trees, chokecherries getting leaves
5/10 Josie’s Ridge, Jackson: pasque flower, bluebells, phlox, shooting star, Wiedmeyer’s admiral butterfly
5/11 Wilson: osprey, geese, redtail hawk, cow elk
5/19 Jackson: pine siskin, cassin’s finch, black-capped chickadee, mountain chickadee, western tanager, evening grosbeak, ravens on the nest
5/21 Teton Village Road: red fox
5/22—5/27 Dayton, Ohio: pileated woodpecker, bald eagle, harris hawk, cardinals, house wren, tornado
5/29 Jackson: sun and afternoon showers
Trails are slowly opening. Best hiking options are in the valley. Near the town of Jackson, the Snow King Recreation area trails are great this time of year. There are lots of options to meander or gain steady elevation. Trails are well marked. Park at the base of Snow King or near the post office on Maple Way for easy access. ache Creek is another great place for a spring walk. You can access the trailhead by turning south on Redmond Street near St. John’s Hospital. Drive towards the mountain and the Cache Creek Road will be on your left. Carry bear spray and properly prepare for your adventure. Have fun!