November started warm and dry and we experienced temps into the 50’s which is unusual for this area. Fortunately, a winter storm arrived for Thanksgiving and the snow started to accumulate. The recent storm dropped 20 inches of snow and we are enjoying the change to a winter landscape.
A great comprehensive source for avalanche advisories, avalanche events, weather and snow data is jhavalanche.org. Throughout the winter, you can read the daily 24-hour observation report, get current conditions and follow overall snow statistics. It’s a great tool that works well if you already have a solid understanding of snow and terrain. An avalanche course is highly recommended to safely play in the mountains. Our local community offers a variety of courses.
Seeing wildlife is the number one attraction for most visitors to Jackson Hole and it seems momentum is building for protection near our roadways. In early November, the Jackson community voted for a special tax to support wildlife crossings in the area. The Town of Jackson needs to get the Wyoming Department of Transportation on board but wildlife crossings might become a reality. Read more »
Thanks to NASA satellites, scientists were able to determine that bison basically mow and fertilize their food. As they graze, they mow the grasses and their waste acts as a fertilizer. Bison are able to spend a couple of months in one area while other hoofed animals have to migrate to higher elevations to find new nutritious plant growth. Being a large, heavy animal, minimizing migration helps the bison to conserve calories and survive the long, harsh winters. Read more »
The holidays can be a stressful time for many of us. Time with family can pull us into past regrets, or fill us with stress and anxiety. Shopping for gifts, writing greeting cards, and all of the holiday events and expectations tend to fill our schedules and lead to overwhelm. Nature is always a good reset. Don’t forget to go outside for a walk in the fresh air to bring back the calm. Notice your breath and how your body feels as a gentle reminder to stay in THIS moment. I wish you all a peaceful holiday season with joy, kindness and equanimity.
What’s in the Woods
11/3 – Jackson, WY, bluejay, cassin’s finch, chickadees at birdfeeder
11/4 – cool and sunny
11/6 – bluebird day at Hermitage Point, elk, moose tracks, wolf scat, trumpeter swans, geese, ravens
11/8 – Jackson, clark’s nutcrackers at my feeder
11/11 — 11/20 – traveled south, golden eagle feeding on carcus along highway, skunk visits our camp at night, bobcat! in Sedona, trumpeter swans in Palisades Reservoir
11/22 – Jackson, WY, bluejay, northern flicker, sunny
11/24 – Puzzleface Ranch, about 20 trumpeter swans including adults and cygnets
11/25 – snow!
Early season conditions exist and our weird, weather-affected snow pack has increased avalanche danger. Be quite careful if touring in the mountains. Our current snow pack is unstable. You can snowshoe on the Park trails or take poles and walk. You can’t beat a walk to Taggert Lake on a sunny day. Remember that wildlife closures began on December 1 so make sure that you know where you can play without stressing the wildlife. More snow is in the forecast! Have fun…