Old Man Winter has arrived and winter recreation is now in full swing! November delivered average snowfall and below average temperatures but the snow has continued to fly bringing current snowfall to above average for this time of year. Snow King, Jackson Hole and Grand Targhee resorts are all open for the winter 2022-23 season offering lots of skiable terrain. As snow deepens, remember to keep a keen eye out for wildlife on the roads and on the move. Don’t forget that it’s crucial to limit disturbance as animals get weakened with limited food sources and winter weather.
Elk and Big Horn Sheep are migrating onto the National Elk Refuge. The land is closed to people to protect the animals. The local community has been asked, if you drive the refuge road to see the sheep, DO NOT let them lick your vehicle. It can be very harmful to the herd and spreads illness. Wildlife closures protect critical winter habitats to reduce disturbance.
‘Tis the season when cross-country skiing tracks are set and ice rinks are filled. The Teton County/Jackson Parks & Recreation has begun its grooming season early this year. Both JH Nordic and the Parks&Rec websites are great resources for trail conditions and grooming updates. The Bridger-Teton Avalanche Center, another crucial backcountry tool, offers recent avalanche, snowpack and weather observations made in the Bridger-Teton area. Be prepared and make wise decisions — let’s make it a safe season out there.
Mule Deer are native in Jackson Hole and they have one of the largest migration routes into and out of the valley. They summer in high elevation meadows and winter at lower elevation. During the winter months, you can often see deer on the hills near town as they seek terrain with more exposed vegetation and wind-swept snow. Currently, biologists are concerned about population decline so Wyoming Game and Fish has begun a 5-year study to learn more about the native deer and their day to day lives.
“One kind word can warm three winter months.”
— Japanese Proverb
- During the winter, it is common to see Eagles and Swans near town. Swans seek flowing water and enjoy time on Flat Creek and eagles fly throughout the valley looking for a meal so spend less time along the river.
- If you drive the refuge road and see the sheep, DO NOT let them lick your vehicle. It can be very harmful to the herd and spreads illness.
- Make sure to load the local search and rescue app, Backcountry SOS, on your phone to be prepared for possible emergency — get the app »
- Plan accordingly for your adventure and be well prepared for winter weather
- For safety, tell someone where you are going and when you’ll be home
Check out JH Nordic for trail information, grooming schedule and much more. Grand Teton Park has deep snow and tracks are being set. The southern entrance to Granite Canyon is closed until December 16 but there are lots of other great places to tour. Cache Creek is close to town and fun to walk, bike or ski. Teton Canyon in Alta, Wyoming is a wonderful place to bring the family!
Join us for an interpretive, interactive tour to connect more deeply to winter, ecology, wildlife and nature in Jackson Hole. Visit our website holehike.com or call 307.690.4453 to book a fun adventure for you and your group.