What a magical summer here in the Tetons! It’s been a season of clear blue skies and, due to the abundant spring rain, the alpine meadows appear endless with brilliantly blooming wildflowers. There are 1,000 varieties of flowering plants in our region and with blooms at all elevations, there’s lots to admire right now. Find peak blossoms around 9,500 feet and berries and seeds blowing in the wind at lower elevations. We did not see much rain in July, but the mid-summer tends to bring monsoonal moisture from the southwest and rain is in the forecast. As August unfolds, we’ll see more haze on the Teton peaks as a result of western fires.
Local — Fire danger is currently high
The warm temperatures of July and August continue to increase fire danger. This is the time of year when wildfires are most common. Fires do rejuvenate our forests and are a necessary part of the ecosystem. With our dry climate, the heat of fire replenishes nutrients which are necessary for a healthy forest. That said, we must all be careful to prevent human caused fires.
For information about local restrictions and smoke updates, visit the Teton Interagency Fire website.
Regional — Our government is helping nature by planting one billion trees throughout burned areas in the west
The Biden Administration is being proactive by planting trees to offset the effects of climate change and the devastation of wildfires. A wildfire burns hot and the extreme temperature of fire can burn into the soil killing all the seeds. This scenario leaves a barren forest that can take decades to regenerate.
Learn more: US to plant 1 billion trees as climate change kills forests
“The mountains are calling and I must go.”
- Fun time of the summer to see the young animals. They grow so fast! Look for Pronghorn fawns near Antelope Flats and between the warm springs and Mormon road.
- Look for the herds of Bison near Antelope Flats and Triangle X Ranch. It’s mating season and the time of year when the herd is at its largest size.
- Great time of the year for look for butterflies. Jackson has about 250 different species. Keep an eye out near water. Take trip up Cache Creek near town or to Jackson Lake beneath the majestic Teton peaks.
- Staying hydrated helps the body to acclimate to the valley’s elevation and best prepare for adventures ahead.
- Possible afternoon showers make mornings the time to hit the trail.
- Make sure to prepare for your adventure with proper layers, water, food, first aid kit and bear spray.
August is a wonderful time to ride the aerial tram at the Jackson Hole Mountain Resort. Your adventure starts at 10,450 feet so plan for more wind and cooler temperatures. From the top of the tram, you can find access to a variety of trails and set off to explore and discover the plants and animals in the alpine environment. If you’d like to explore with a naturalist, we’ve got you covered! Head to our website and book your hiking tour with a tram add-on.
Learn more: https://www.holehike.com/summer-hiking-tours/