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Old 01-25-2013, 04:23 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Jackson Hole/Grand Targhee - Trip Review

I just returned from snowboarding at Jackson Hole Mountain Resort (3 days) and Grand Targhee (1 day). I was on the mountains from 1/20-1/23. I really enjoyed it. There was no fresh powder, which was the only downside, but they were getting dumped on on my return day.

Background: I am an upper intermediate boarder. I was doing mostly double blue (their name for blue/black) groomers, a few blacks, a few bowls, and some woods (I would have done more off trail, but they hadn't had fresh powder for 5 days). I am 5'10", 11.5 boot, riding a 2010 Gnu Rider's Choice MTX (camber) with Ride SPI bindings, and Saloman Malamute boots.

I have to tell you, in 4 days, I never waited for a single lift more than 15 seconds. There is no one there, and there are no lines.

Here are my thoughts. This is sort of a stream of conciousness.

Jackson Hole is awesomely steep. Everything is steep. The traverses are steep (no chance of getting stuck, big chance of falling off the mountain). The mountain was very well groomed. I really enjoyed the new Casper lift area, which is all superfast/superwide groomers (I went 47 mph if you want to know), with excellent high speed quad service.

Apres Vous lift area was also fun, with a variety blues and ok blacks. I enjoyed the tighter slopes there, but that area was a little more crowded (it was referred to me by a lift operator as the "tourist" area).

Thunder Chair area was my favorite. Laramie Bowl was my favorite run. It felt like I was boarding down the Hoover Dam, fast/steep/concave bowl. I think at most mountains this would have been a black, but JH has a pretty serious bent towards steep slopes.

Rendevous Bowl: I tried it. I boarded the bowl in the single black area. It was heavily mogulled out, which I don't really like, but I pulled it off. Glad I did it, but a bit tough for my skill level.

Least favorite run: South Traverse coming back from Rendevous Mountain. A narrow and steep crossover that switched back 3 times. I usually complain about flat cat track traverses. This was the opposite.

Side Note about Grand Targhee: I took a day trip over to Grand Targhee (I had a rental car). It took me about 45 minutes to drive there in good weather conditions. Grand Targhee is like a smaller version of Kirkwood (I mean this is a very good way). It has 2600 acreas of skiable terrain, but only 3 chair lifts. You can go anywhere. Not may trees, and lots of fun places to ski in the trees. There were maybe 100 people on the mountain that who day (a Tuesday). Think about that math. I rarely saw other people except when skiing into the lodge area. The terrain felt much less steep. I was doing mostly blacks and woods skiing there. I highly recommend a day trip over there if you are at JH.

For Reference: I rented a condo at Teton Village through VRBO and rented a car through Priceline (I highly recommend this). I drove into Jackson most nights for dinner. Dinner at the Local (awesome), Snake River Brewing Company (very good), Mangy Moose (in Teton Village/Good), and Gun & Barrel (good). Desserts at CocoLove are amazing, and everything at the Bunnery was awesome for breakfast and dessert.

I hope this helps you when choosing a future trip.
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Old 01-25-2013, 04:28 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Hey bro. Thanks for this. Gonna be in Jackson for the first time in exactly a week. Just printed this out to have with me for reference.....good looks.
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Old 01-25-2013, 06:17 PM   #3 (permalink)
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thanks for the report. JH is somewhere I want to check out for sure some day!!

if a cat fucked a shark, the babies would be called women. snowklinger
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Old 01-25-2013, 06:26 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I failed at the picture taking. Sorry. I only took one picture while there. I can't really outdo the pictures at Google Images anyway though. Some people said that Jackson is not a pretty mountain view. I disagree. The valley floor was completely snow covered prairie. You drive through the National Elk Preserve on your way in for gosh sakes. And the valley is surrounded by mountains. It is reminiscient of Steamboat, but with more mountains. Plus, the Tetons. Holy Moly, the Tetons. They are amazing to look at. From on JHMR you have a hard time seeing them because they are essentially the next set of mountains northward.

From over at Grand Targhee, you get amazing views of the Teton's from their backside. It's funny. You drive almost an our, but are maybe 10-15 miles away from JHMR. You have to circle around through Teton Pass to get there and down through the valley in Driggs, Idaho. Based purely on appearance, I would not recommend staying over there by Grand Targhee. Driggs is tiny, maybe 2000 people, and Alta, WY, is not really a town at all as far as I could tell. Jackson is set up for eating and partying if that is your thing (I eat).
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Old 01-28-2013, 03:54 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Thumbs up

Originally Posted by --bigtime-- View Post
Hey bro. Thanks for this. Gonna be in Jackson for the first time in exactly a week. Just printed this out to have with me for reference.....good looks.
Headed out there mid feb. need updates!
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Old 01-28-2013, 10:13 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Bummer dude, you just missed this huge storm pounding the west -
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Old 01-30-2013, 04:55 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Awesome. We were at Jhole early January. Not as much snow as previous years but still great!

Rendezvous was crusty moguls when we were there but still fun.
Yes Laramie bowl is one of my fav runs.
The best are the woods near Casper called the Moran Woods. We spent a lot of time there.
When there is a lot of snow Ranger underneath the Gondola and Tower Three off Thunder are really fun.

If you stay away from the groomers in Apres Vous where most of the people go, you can find really fun runs in that area.

We did not get to do the Hobacks this year but did Headwall once.
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Old 05-18-2013, 11:09 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I was at Jackson Hole in early January as well. Did a day trip to Grand Targhee as well. I had an absolute blast. My favorite run(s) were through the Hobacks after a fews inches of pow came through the night before with Mr. Polonia.

I plan on making another trip there next March. Can't wait.

A few iphone pics


Corbet's Couloir - it was icy as hell that day and closed

Gondola Summit

From the groomed Apres Vous side of the mountain.
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Old 05-18-2013, 07:38 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Awesome insight. A buddy and I are planning a trip to go out there next Jan. or Feb. Just curious, what was your total cost. We live in Ohio and would have to hit a connector flight from a city that flies out to JH. Last I checked, tickets were around $500 per for flights. I'm more curious on how much the stay is and did you stay in a decent place there at the mountain.
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Old 05-18-2013, 08:46 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I'm fairly lucky in that we have a timeshare we use there. Unfortunately, that means that we have to book a year in advance and have to go regardless of the weather/snow situation.

If you stay in Teton Village expect to pay an arm and a leg for a room. Better prices can be found in the town of Jackson itself. You can take a shuttle directly to the mountain.
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