Jackson Hole & Dubois

3:02 p.m. on September 8, 2010 (EDT)
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I am going to be out in Jackson Hole and Dubois, WY from Sept. 15th through the 20th.

Gary, I am guessing with your surgery recovery you won't be making it up to Jackson Hole by then after all?

Though I will be out there on business, I plan on doing some hiking and maybe an overnighter and am looking for some suggestions.

What would be the absolute best day hike or overnight trip, no more that 12- 14 miles round trip?

I have never been backpacking in the west, so any advice would be appreciated, i.e. what kind of temps should I expect, etc?

If anyone will be in that area, I would be delighted to have someone with local knowledge, if they wanted to join me.

10:26 p.m. on September 8, 2010 (EDT)
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Gonzan, (your profile name makes me think of Lord of the Rings),

No I won't be back in Jackson this year.

I would suggest going to Teton Village and taking the Aerial tram up to Rendzvous then hiking back down to Jackson Hole via Granite Canyon.

The topo map shows the route. You can park your car at Teton Village, take the Aerial Tram to the top at Rendezvous (10,400') for the best views (short of the top of the Grand Teton) of Jackson Hole below. Then follow the Granite Creek trail down the west side passing South, Middle and over to the North Fork drainages of Granite. Stop at Marion Lake then return to the North Fork and hike all down hill to the Valley Trail. Then follow the Valley Trail back to Teton Village. When it comes to the ski slope hike down and pass the Condos. Total distance is about 12 miles. This one of my favorite day hikes.

Teton Village is about 8 miles from the town of Jackson. Go west towards Idaho, then just after crossing the Snake River, turn north on the Teton Village Road.

Watch for plenty of wildlife all the way from the village to the top, Moose and deer are often seen grazing the slopes. Then look for Black Bears and deer along the upper areas and more Moose along the way down Granite and along the Valley Trail. It is around the "Rut" so some Moos may be a little pushy. I have seen as many as 4 Bulls in the lower sections of Granite with huge antlers.

Another way back from the village to Jackson is to take the Moose/Wilson road along the eastern edge of the Tetons after driving back out to the highway from Teton Village and heading north. It goes thru the forrest and meadows with different views of the Teton Range sharply above to the west. Moose, Bears, Elk and deer can be seen along the way. Its a dirt road for about 3 miles then turns to pavement the rest of the way. It comes out at Moose, a small post office and the southeast entrance to Grand Teton Park. Go east after Moose and back over the Snake River to the hwy back to Jackson which is to the south. Just after the Snake River bridge is a turn off north to a place called Dornan's. There you can get a beer, have BBQ, pizza or a regualr meal, there is also a small grocery and gift and apparel shops.

1:47 p.m. on September 9, 2010 (EDT)
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This look fantastic, Gary! Thank you for your advice.

It would have been great to meet you, I just hope you fully recover from your hospital blitz.

What will overnight temps be like up there at between 8,000 and 9,000ft?

4:58 p.m. on September 9, 2010 (EDT)
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That was supposed to read "I hope just hope you fully recover quickly"

I know you will be out on the trail kicking as ever soon.

7:02 p.m. on September 9, 2010 (EDT)
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Even in mid September it could snow and/or be around 30 degree's at night. Do you perhaps plan to maybe make the hike a overnighter? Lake Marion is a nice place to camp! If you do that and get to the lake early, after setting up camp take a dayhike over Fox Creek Pass to the north and See Death Canyon Shelf, 9,000-10,000 foot bench. I broke two ribs there once in the early 80s in the spring time after falling thru a snow cornice and hitting my chest on a slab of limestone. I hiked two more days with the unknown broken ribs (sleeping was unbearable as I could not lay down), when I returned to Jackson I went to a doctor, he had to rebreak them to set them as they had healed a bit over the two days and were unaligned.

All my best memories of hiking are in Jackson Hole! I lived there 25 summers and 5 winters between 1980 and 2009. The other summers were in Alaska,Zion, Lake Placid and Arkansas. The other winters were in Tucson, Flagstaff, Utah and 20 in the Grand Canyon working and/or backpacking.

Maybe someday soon I will be back in Jackson, after a couple summers down here in northern Arizona I know now that winters are okay down here temp wise but summers are way to dry and warm for me. I think next summer I will be back in "The Hole". I sometimes used to make Flagstaff my winter home when I wasn't hiking the Grand Canyon or working there.

December and January were my favorite months in the canyon because there were way less people, day time temps were mild but not cold enough to not be able to wear shorts and a Tshirt in the inner canyon, while temps on the south rim were in the teens and a few feet of snow. Only time I had to wear long pants and a sweater was on the rim in between trips and I would make trips for a month. My longest hike was 256 miles over 28 days in the canyon in January 1999.

Its hard trying to be settled down when I have spent 34 years traveling, backpacking, bicycle touring and taking an average of 8 months off every year. After this bout with my surgury I hope to get back out and get back into adventure travel again but more. I can wait 20 years when I am 75 to try retirement again.

12:44 p.m. on September 10, 2010 (EDT)
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Great stories, Gary :)

Yes, I am hoping to make an overnighter. I would definitely have liked to camp at Marion, but I will need to get back to my car earlyish on my second day, so I think I am going to bed down at the camp area near the patrol cabin where the Middle Fork meets the North Fork. That way I will be more than half way and almost all downhill on the way out in the morning.

8:57 p.m. on September 10, 2010 (EDT)
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Yes, that area is also a nice place to camp near the Patrol Cabin. Once on the Valley Trail the trail goes thru some pine and aspen forests and makes its way back to Teton Village. Look for Moose near the mouth of Granite Creek, as I have often seen them, especially Bulls in the rut.

Below are some shots from Granite Canyon...The fourth from the last shows a Bull and cow Moose I saw near the mouth in late October 2008.

The third picture down is of Apre Vous Peak, while the second one is from near the same peak on the ridge above looking across the canyon. I was near the point on the upper right in the first picture, near the top of the Apre Vous ski lift.

The fourth shot down is a falls you'll pass close to on the way down near the mouth. The next shot is Granite Creek way down near where it flows into the Snake River in the lower valley along a trail that leads from the Wilson-Moose road I mentioned.

fter that is my friend Lane drinking from Granite Creek the same day we saw the two Moose in late October, notice the new snow.

The next to last picture is the Sleeping Indian (or Sheep Mountain, as od timers called it) taken along th Valley Trail. The Last shot is from the other side of Jackson Hole on the east side from a place called Curtis Canyon with the definite features of a Indian Chief laying on his back, nose upward and his belly. Lane and I did a day hike up to his belly from Kelly WY a week before.

Have fun next week in Jackson Hole(JH) and be sure tolook east for the Sleeping Indian. He will first come into view just northeast of Jackson and a good/best place to see him is about 4 miles north when you come to the unoffical south end of Grand Teton Parks at this sign...(I say unoffical, as the true south entrance is about 6 miles up the road near Moose after you cross the Snake River.) The park lands are actually much larger than the land the Rockefeller's gave to the Nat'l Park system many years ago. Yes, The Rockefeller's , one of the richest families in the 1900's used to own the land that makes up the Grand Teton Nat'l Park. They donated it to the park system in the early 1900's. I guess it was their pioneer ancestors homestead.

It just up the hill past the fish hatchery. Theres a pull-out with the sign above and look to the east for the sleeping Indian Mountain. Many times I have stopped there while cycling around Jackson Hole, and asked after tourist's have looked around, "Did you see the sleeping indian over there," Pointing to the east. They always look at me like I have lost my mind. Then I point to to the mountain and say, "There , Thats the Sleeping Indian I was talkin' about". And then they see it and say "thanks we never noticed it!" Can you see the forest thru the tree's?

12:52 a.m. on September 21, 2010 (EDT)
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Please let me know when you get back how your trip went?

The town of Jackson, the Tetons and the valley called Jackson Hole in between. From the top of Snow King Mountain just south of town looking north. The green area tothe middle right above town is the National Elk Refuge where in winter 1000s of elk live before heading back into the mountains for the summers. Yellowstone NP is over the far distant horizon upper right. This shot was taken in early August 2008 , the snow above tree line in the Tetons was left from a 650+ inch total snow fall the winter before. Behind Grand Teton (the highest point above) were 20 foot snow drifts at 9000 feet.

1:55 p.m. on September 23, 2010 (EDT)
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I went to Jackson hole and Yellowstone back in june, it was awesome you will have a great time! We didn't have a lot of time in Jackson Hole but we did do one trail that was short but gorgeous called swan lake trail. the trail head is near the colter bay visitor center. it is only 3 miles so good if you have time to do a short hike.

April 21, 2018
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