Get full access to Outside Learn, our online education hub featuring in-depth fitness, nutrition, and adventure courses and more than 2,000 instructional videos when you sign up for Outside+ Sign up for Outside+ today.
[Eds note: Our mild-mannered web guy, Stephen Sebestyen, took a recent trip to the Tetons. We asked him to document the journey. Here are the results. Enjoy.]
Lets face it. The snowpack in Colorado has been less then stellar this season. The Teton Valley, on the other hand, seems to have drawn the full attention of the snow gods. After weeks of following snow reports and seeing countless pictures of close friends in knee-deep powder, we broke down and decided to venture North. With the car packed and the ski rack filled to the brim, we acted on the good words of the late Johhny and June Carter Cash,”We’re goin to Jackson…”
Upon arriving, we were greeted with excellent hospitality, a warm condo, cold beers, and an adventure bus to host our shenanigans. The old school bus had been gutted and renovated to host a flat screen tv, snow cone machine, heaters, crowd speakers, and sleeping for five.
Waking up in -14 degree weather makes everything a little more difficult, especially when your ski racks are partially frozen shut. No matter, with enough coffee and the promise of good snow, any obstacle can be overcome.
The Tram at Jackson Hole is a must. A short ride carries skiers up more than 4000 vertical feet to gorgeous views and amazing terrain.
What makes any great day of skiing even better? How about bluebird skies and perfect temperatures.
Both Jackson Hole and Grand Targhee offered excellent sidecountry skiing accessible by way of a short hike from the lift. We spent the better part of one day hiking the bowls, and found fresh turns on each new descent.
Grand Targhee Resort reported the best snow over our weekend stay in the Tetons, so naturally we had to investigate. With a little searching and a little hiking, we struck gold with the best turns of the weekend.
Backcountry gates at Grand Targhee granted access to steeps and fresh snow, as well as ample information to understand the conditions and approach them safely.
Over the weekend we had the opportunity to test a fresh pair of sticks from Knight Skis. Handmade in Durango, Colorado, these skis have balsa wood cores wrapped with carbon, making them stupidly light and very lively in soft conditions.
“Choose Wisely.” Those were the two words of advice spoken by our guide at Grand Targhee in reference to skiing cliff lines. There were some convoluted landing zones, but most of the lines were clean and clear.
Grand may be a bit a bit of understatement. Perhaps the Prodigious Teton, or the Tremendous Towering Teton would prove more apt names. Nomenclature aside, the Tetons and the surrounding ski resorts provide excellent snow, brilliant terrain, and many adventures worth having.
Photo: Jordan Kevin Duran