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February 10, 2008

Jackson Trip Cancelled

The Idaho Dept. of Transportation closed Highway 26 into Jackson from Idaho Falls on Friday night, ending our plans to ski there on Saturday. Sucks because we had to cancel our hotel reservations and all. Drifting and blowing snow. Since I was travelling with the whole family, we didn't have the time to drive up on Saturday.

And my annual sinus infection returns. I am on antibiotics, pain killers, and steroids. Not even full blown bad yet, but I am already hurting.

Gonna try to get in a day at Big Sky and Alta on the way back.

Posted by Justin at 02:52 PM

February 05, 2008

Huge Snowstorm at Sunrise Shuts Down Highway

Skiers driving to Sunrise are gonna be pissed:

Winter snow cut off access to the Sunrise Park Resort ski area Tuesday morning.

Arizona 260 between McNary and Greer was closed, according to the Arizona Department of Transportation.

The road was expected to reopen by 4 p.m. Tuesday. The ski resort will be closed for the day, according to its Web site.

Information about highway conditions is available on ADOT's Travel Information site at www.az511.com or by calling 511.

I am hearing 3'+ yesterday. Snowbowl got almost 2' and has excellent conditions too. Snowbowl has some great pics on their homepage.

I am heading to Jackson Hole this weekend and where they have nothing but snow in the forecast. I am debating taking a trip to Brokeback Mountain Ski Area where their ski report says:

It's another bluebird day at Brokeback Mountain Ski Area. The storm has deposited three feet of fresh snow. It's a perfect time to come out.

Our brand new backside terrain is a real hit with skiers. But Jack's Bowls are not for everyone. These steep aspen glades are only suitable for a hardened outdorsman who knows how to cruise the woods safely...

Whether you're just making your first steps on skis or you're an expert skier our mountain has lots to offer. From steep runs off Jack's Notch to the gentle slopes of Little Queen we are first and foremost a family resort.

Poor Heath Ledger.

Posted by Justin at 09:28 AM | Comments (2)

March 06, 2007

Great Article About Jackson and the Loss of the Tram

The Denver Post has an article about Jackson Hole and the loss of the tram:

By now, pretty much every self-respecting skier has at least some familiarity with Jackson Hole Mountain Resort because of its 40-year reputation as the king of big mountain skiing. From Corbet's to Coombs, its status among experts is as big as its 4,140-foot vertical rise, rivaled by only a rarified few on the continent.

Still, most of those skiers (and snowboarders) would be shocked to learn just how few people actually visit the famed mountain - fewer than 400,000 a year on average. And thanks to tradition, you can expect even less this season.

Last winter saw a record number of skiers and snowboarders at Jackson Hole, a whopping 450,000 (compared to more than a million each at Vail, Breckenridge, Keystone and others that comprised Colorado's 2005-06 record of more than 12 million). After learning of the retirement of the fabled Jackson Hole tram, the tribe of traditionalists (and, yes, I was among them) flocked to the mountain to pay respects to the retiring war horse after 40 years of dedicated service...

The good news is that plans have been submitted for a new 100-passenger tram that will double the capacity of the former lift when it comes online in December 2008. The better news is that between the end of one tradition and the start of the next, the skiing remains as stellar as ever. The only real difference is that they're practically giving it away.

They might have taken away the tram, but they can't take away the terrain. And while some might lament the loss of the traditional ride up, the reality is that Jackson Hole remains - as it always has - all about the ride back down.

I rode the tram in summer when I was around 10 years old. The Tetons are magnificent and worth visiting Teton National Park any time of year. The town of Jackson is great, but I am biased because my birth certificate says Wyoming. Cody (just outside the east entrance to Yellowstone) is where my dad, aunts and uncles grew up. My mom's mother was born there. My other three grandparents grew up in Lovell, just across the Bighorn Basin. Wyoming has the most beautiful and the ugliest country in the US.

The article highlights a sad fact about the Rockies. Everyone loves Summit County or the areas surrounding Denver for skiing. But the Rockies are a big range. If not Denver, folks love Utah and the SLC area. But when it comes to big mountain skiing Big Sky, Montana and Jackson Hole, Wyoming will astound you. Vertical that is beyond belief and massive areas. No crowds. Both combined average around half the visitors that Breck, Keystone, or Vail get. And both are practically inside of either Teton or Yellowstone National Parks.

Posted by Justin at 11:12 AM

November 04, 2005

The End of An Era at Jackson, WY

This is not new news as it was announced in June, but is certainly worth writing about. From Jackson Hole, WY:

JHMR owners, the Kemmerer Family, in conjunction with Resort Management have decided that, while experts assess the aerial tram would be operable for multiple years, it should be decommissioned before any safety concerns arise. As a result, the Aerial Tram will close September 2006 after 40 years of incredible service.

I was born just on the other side of Yellowstone from Jackson in Powell, Wyoming. I still consider the northern Wyoming-southern Montana area home, despite living in Phoenix for almost 20 years. The Tram was an icon. Not just for skiers, but for all visitors to Jackson. It ran year round and provided some of the most breath-taking views you will ever get of the Tetons.

Although we went to Jackson several times in the Summer, we never ventured there to ski it. This year will be my first time at Jackson, but whether it is your first time riding the tram or possibly your last, it is well worth the trip. Several friends make a yearly trip there to ski and they all say the same thing--it will humble you. Jackson is one of the most challenging places to ski around and over 4,000 ft. of Vertical just off the tram will test the skills of even the best skiers.

Posted by Justin at 11:37 AM