Search This Blog

Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Day 5 & 6 - Grand Teton National Park and Jackson Hole, Wyoming

I remember the first time I got off the plane and wandered around the state of Wyoming almost 10 years ago.  I'm not sure how else to describe that first week I spent in Wyoming but I know I was smitten.  It was my first time out west and I was fully thrown into this land of cowboys and ski bums. It was love at first sight, I was convinced Wyoming was the place for me.  

I went to Yellowstone National Park and we rented snowmobiles to see sleepy bison and Old Faithful with a fresh snowfall.  I got my first taste of powder as we skied this famously hard mountain and ate sushi at the top on a perfect sunny day.  I saw my first moose and bald eagle in Grand Teton National Park.  I watched a service for a ski patrol member and watched the culture of this ski town come to life as everyone paid their respects with a flask of whisky in Teton Village.   I drank cold beer at the Mangy Moose and I fell in love with this part of the country so far from home.  I chatted with the taxi driver on how I could feasibly move myself (and my horse) out here.  Turns out I never made it to Wyoming but believe me when I say I was in love. 

This was my third time back to the cowboy state.  It was my first time there insanely sick but nonetheless, I was happy to be back and with Adam.  We left Salt Lake City early and made the 4.5-hour drive north, through beautiful Idaho and into Wyoming.  It was snowing and a little too early to check into our hotel so instead, we went straight to the Visitor's Center.  We walked through the exhibits and grabbed a map to see which roads through Grand Teton National Park were open in the winter.    

Wyoming just feels like the wild west.  There are these incredible national parks, jagged mountain peals, meandering rivers and wildlife galore.  There are epic ski mountains, drive through liquor stores, and restaurants filled with wild game.   

You can get a taste of how wild this state is when you drive through the national parks.  I had done this scenic drive a few times already but let me tell you, it was an entirely new experience to see it all through Adam's eyes.  Grand Teton was his first national park and his first time really seeing wildlife.  He gasped.  He pulled over a lot.  He covered his mouth and exclaimed "oh my god" at the sheer sight of a moose in the distance.  He was like a kid in the candy store experiencing Wyoming from the drivers side of the car.   

You should definitely stop at the Visitor's Center to talk to the local guides about what animals have been seen where, and what road closures are in effect (see map below). 

After a day of wildlife "hunting", we went back and checked into our hotel.  We picked the Wyoming Inn of Jackson Hole because it was close to downtown Jackson, didn't put us in the poor house like all of the lodging at Teton Village, and had that Wyoming decor that was fun to experience for two nights. We loved coming back to sit in the lounge by the fire with tea and cookies, read through the books and listen to Adam explain the game of chess.

On our second day in Wyoming, we packed up our skis and headed to my favorite ski resort, Jackson Hole.  I was still feeling under the weather and while we had awesome snow, it was another one of those flat light hard to see days.  We rode the tram to the top and skied down Rendezvous Bowl.  We skied some of my favorite runs in awesome powder and spent the day experiencing the steeps of Jackson.  Adam instantly understood my love of this mountain and it was awesome to ski the mountain with him, even on a cloudy flat day. 

I had big plans to take Adam to some of my favorite spots while in Wyoming like Nora's Fish Creek Inn and the Million Dollar Cowboy Bar.  I wanted to enjoy Trout and Eggs in a wooden chair and sit in the western saddle and line dance. What really happened?  We spent an evening walking around the square, stopping into shops before grabbing dinner and getting back into bed before 9.

I was still sick and was back home earrrly every night trying to kick what I am pretty sure was the flu.  The cherry on top of this sick trip was Adam's tooth pain.  They had left a portion of his wisdom tooth in his gums and he was in excruciating pain for most of the trip.  The pain was so bad that he drove himself to the Jackson Hole ER one night to get something for the pain.  

This was a trip for the books. 

No comments :

Post a Comment

Let's Chat!