A Visit to Heaven: Jackson, Wyoming and the Grand Tetons

Grand Tetons Grand Tetons[/caption] March 13, 2013:  Today was heavenly…WOW!! I spent the day with my niece and her husband and we traveled east from Rexburg over Teton Pass to Jackson, Wyoming and then north to Grand Teton National Park.

Jackson, WY and Grand Tetons

[caption id="attachment_2123" align="aligncenter" width="199"]Mountain Man by Steve Horn - Horn Mountain Gallery in Tetonia, ID “Mountain Man” by Steve Horn – Horn Mountain Gallery in Tetonia, ID[/caption] Our first stop on the road to Jackson was in Tetonia, ID. We made a stop outside of Horn Mountain Living to get the shot of the “Mountain Man” sculpture above, which was done by Steve Horn.  Steve moved to Teton Valley over 30 years ago and lived as a mountain man prior to that. He is completely self-taught and gives his Creator full credit for his abilities. He has since become one of the country’s top hand carved furniture makers and his favorite medium is stone.  Another item we saw outside the gallery was this bear… [caption id="attachment_2045" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Bear by Steve Horn - Tetonia, ID Bear by Steve Horn – Tetonia, ID[/caption] I also got a kick out of the sign below: [caption id="attachment_2122" align="aligncenter" width="199"]Dave's Pubb - Tetonia, ID Dave’s Pubb – Tetonia, ID[/caption] We also saw a nice mural at the Teton Mountain View Lodge in Tetonia. [caption id="attachment_2046" align="aligncenter" width="640"]Teton Mountain View Lodge Teton Mountain View Lodge mural (2005 by Terri Furness)[/caption] From Tetonia we headed southeast towards Driggs, ID. [caption id="attachment_2048" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Driggs, Idaho Downtown Driggs, Idaho[/caption] Driggs is really at the base of the Tetons on the Western side and has the unique small town feel yet also a touristy place. [caption id="attachment_2049" align="aligncenter" width="199"]Buffalo Statue - Driggs, ID Buffalo Statue – Driggs, ID[/caption] Just south of Driggs is the fairly famous “Spud Drive-In Theater.” The theater is one of only two drive-ins theaters listed on the National Register of Historic Places.  One claim to fame is the big spud on the back of a 1946 Chevrolet flat-bed truck. [caption id="attachment_2057" align="aligncenter" width="640"]The Spud Truck - Driggs, ID The Spud Truck – Driggs, ID[/caption] [caption id="attachment_2055" align="aligncenter" width="300"]The Spud sign - Driggs, ID The Spud sign – Driggs, ID[/caption] [caption id="attachment_2056" align="aligncenter" width="259"]Little Spuds at entry gate Little Spuds at entry gate[/caption] [caption id="attachment_2124" align="aligncenter" width="640"]Sumoflam with the Spud Guys Sumoflam with the Spud Guys in the truck[/caption] [caption id="attachment_2053" align="aligncenter" width="215"]Spud Pooh Pooh Tater[/caption] The Spud was a lot of fun!! But, we needed to move on to Victor, another small town on the way to Jackson.  We made a quick stop at the Victor Emporium to get a shot of the mural on their wall.  They are known for their Huckleberry Milkshakes, which they have been serving since 1950. [caption id="attachment_2058" align="aligncenter" width="640"]Victor Emporium Mural - Victor, ID Victor Emporium Mural – Victor, ID[/caption] From Victor we headed up the Teton Pass, which crests at 8432 feet.  Along the way we crossed into Wyoming. [caption id="attachment_2059" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Welcome to Wyoming sign on Teton Pass Welcome to Wyoming sign on Teton Pass[/caption] At the crest of the pass we were granted a spectacular view of the Jackson Hole valley below.  The first white man to see this view was John Colter, in 1807.  As a member of the Lewis and Clark Expedition, he returned to the area and recorded descriptions of the valley and its features in his journals.  Colter was also the first man of European descent to see the Yellowstone region. Much of what he wrote about was unbelieveable to many due to the fantastic nature of the scenery. There is a great write-up of Colter’s history on Wikipedia. [caption id="attachment_2061" align="aligncenter" width="640"]Jackson Hole Valley as seen from Teton Pass Jackson Hole Valley as seen from Teton Pass[/caption] [caption id="attachment_2060" align="aligncenter" width="300"]"Howdy Stranger" Sign at Teton Pass summit “Howdy Stranger” Sign at Teton Pass summit[/caption] From the summit we made our way into the valley and came into beautiful Jackson, Wyoming.  Last time I was in Jackson was in 1975.  I came with some other guys from church while living in the Salt Lake City area.  We came to Jackson to go canoeing down the Snake River for a three days.  My canoe partner, John Janssen, and I lost our canoe in a log jam after running a rapid.  A memorable time. [caption id="attachment_2063" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Welcome to Jackson, Wyoming!! Welcome to Jackson, Wyoming!![/caption] [caption id="attachment_2133" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Jackson, Wyoming and Ski Slope Jackson, Wyoming and Ski Slope[/caption] Our first stop was breakfast.  We found a place called E Leaven Food Company and had a good breakfast. Their bagels are awesome!!  Thomas, my niece’s husband, ordered the biscuits and gravy.  Check this out!! [caption id="attachment_2126" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Biscuits and Gravy from E Leaven Food in Jackson Hole, WY Biscuits and Gravy from E Leaven Food in Jackson Hole, WY – Yummiferous!![/caption] After breakfast we took a walk around the town, saw some fun statues, the famous Antler Arches and other things.  There are some sites that indicate that it requires nearly 10,000 pounds of antlers for each arch.  Many of these come from the National Elk Refuge north of Jackson. [caption id="attachment_2067" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Antler Arch of Jackson Antler Arch of Jackson[/caption] AntlerArchSumoflam1 [caption id="attachment_2068" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Close up of Antlers - Jackson, WY Close up of Antlers – Jackson, WY[/caption] [caption id="attachment_2073" align="aligncenter" width="199"]Famous Cowboy Bar Sign in Jackson, WY Famous Cowboy Bar Sign in Jackson, WY[/caption] [caption id="attachment_2128" align="aligncenter" width="199"]"Cowboy" by Bud Boller “Cowboy” by Bud Boller in center of town square in Jackson, WY[/caption] The statue above is in the middle of town and is the symbol of Wyoming and sits atop the Veteran’s Memorial in Jackson.  The bronze was created by Bud Boller, a registered member of the Shoshone tribe. The Cowboy depicted in the sculpture is “Stub” Farlow and the horse’s name is Deadman. It was completed in 1976. [caption id="attachment_2129" align="aligncenter" width="640"]Sumoflam and Lincoln in Jackson Hole Sumoflam and Lincoln in Jackson Hole – one of a series of Gary Lee Price’s sculptures on the square[/caption] Across the street from the town square is the Mountain Trails Gallery which offers some unique and large art work. In front of the shop are a series of works by artist Gary Lee Price.  Entitled the “Great Contributors“, there are life size bronze works of Abraham Lincoln (above), George Washington, Mark Twain, Benjamin Franklin and Albert Einstein. [caption id="attachment_2064" align="aligncenter" width="300"]My niece Natalie with George Washington My niece Natalie with George Washington by Gary Lee Price in Jackson, WY[/caption] [caption id="attachment_2130" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Natalie and Thomas with Benjamin Franklin in Jackson Hole Natalie and Thomas with Benjamin Franklin in Jackson Hole[/caption] [caption id="attachment_2132" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Sumoflam with Moose Sumoflam with Moose by Terry Lee in Jackson, WY[/caption] [caption id="attachment_2131" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Sumoflam and Bear in Jackson, WY Sumoflam and Bear in Jackson, WY[/caption] After our stroll through town we headed back to the car and prepared to head north to the Tetons.  We made a quick stop at the Jackson Hole Visitor’s Center to get road information in for the park, since many roads were likely closed due to snow. [caption id="attachment_2135" align="aligncenter" width="225"]David and Elk Statue David and Elk Statue at Visitor’s Center[/caption] Finally, we were on our way to see a place I have always dreamed of – the Grand Tetons.  It was a beautiful clear day with a few clouds, but the mountains were magnificent. [caption id="attachment_2134" align="aligncenter" width="640"]First view of the mountains just north of Jackson on the way to Grand Tetons. First view of the mountains just north of Jackson on the way to Grand Tetons[/caption] [caption id="attachment_2097" align="aligncenter" width="640"]Mt. Moran in Grand Tetons as seen from US 89 Mt. Moran in Grand Tetons as seen from US 89 in Grand Tetons N.P.[/caption] [caption id="attachment_2095" align="aligncenter" width="640"]Mt. Moran from US 89 Mt. Moran from US 89[/caption] Once in the National Park, there are signs you see occasionally that warn travelers of bears.  The “Food Storage Required” means that you need to pack up your food securely so bears don’t sniff it out. [caption id="attachment_2085" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Be Bear Aware Sign Be Bear Aware Sign[/caption] We continued north until Moran and then headed west on the John D. Rockefeller Jr. Parkway.  This roadway links Grand Teton N.P. to Yellowstone N.P.  We took the road to Teton Park Rd. and then along Jackson Lake to Signal Mountain Lodge, which was as far as allowed. This crossed us over the Jackson Lake Dam. The snow was deep in this part of the park.  Jackson Lake was frozen and there were guys parked at Signal Mountain that had hiked out on to the lake to do Ice Fishing… [caption id="attachment_2137" align="aligncenter" width="640"]Ice Fishing on Jackson Lake - the little dots Ice Fishing on Jackson Lake – the little dots on the lake[/caption] [caption id="attachment_2089" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Snake River as seen from Jackson Lake Dam near Signal Mountain Snake River as seen from Jackson Lake Dam near Signal Mountain Lodge[/caption] On the way back to the main highway we saw a fox out on the snow.  So stark and unique. [caption id="attachment_2099" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Fox on Snow Fox on Snow[/caption] After getting back on the road, we continued north as far as the Colter Bay Village turnoff.  The road took us along the completely frozen Jackson Lake and then to the village visitor center, which was closed except for one restroom…that was heated!! [caption id="attachment_2091" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Scene near Colter Bay Scene near Colter Bay[/caption] [caption id="attachment_2138" align="aligncenter" width="640"]Mt. Moran as seen from Colter Bay Lodge - Taken with my iPhone! Mt. Moran as seen from Colter Bay Lodge – Taken with my iPhone![/caption] After these scenes (and feeling again like I was in heaven), we headed back to Jackson on the same path.  There were dozens more photos taken of the beautiful mountains before we got to the next turnoff near Jackson at Gros Ventre Rd. Here are a few more shots that were taken along the way. [caption id="attachment_2100" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Grand Tetons along US 89 Grand Tetons along US 89[/caption] [caption id="attachment_2110" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Grand Tetons on US 89 Grand Tetons on US 89[/caption] [caption id="attachment_2106" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Grand Tetons from US 89 Grand Tetons from US 89[/caption] We eventually got to Gros Ventre Rd and headed towards Kelly, WY. We took this drive both for the scenic appeal and for the opportunity to possibly see a moose, as we had heard that there were some sightings. [caption id="attachment_2104" align="aligncenter" width="247"]Moose on Gros Ventre Rd. Moose on Gros Ventre Rd.[/caption] [caption id="attachment_2109" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Another Moose Sighting Another Moose Sighting[/caption] [caption id="attachment_2111" align="aligncenter" width="640"]Yet Another Moose Sighting Yet Another Moose Sighting[/caption] In Kelly, we did NOT see a moose, but we did see one of my favorite things… a metal creature [caption id="attachment_2103" align="aligncenter" width="640"]Metal dinosaur in Kelly, WY Metal dinosaur in Kelly, WY – chewing on a bone no less!![/caption] On the way into Jackson there are more neat sculptures.  As we passed by the National Elk Refuge on the way into Jackson, we could see a bronze herd of buffalo [caption id="attachment_2112" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Bronze Buffalo near Jackson Bronze Buffalo near Jackson – up on a hill[/caption] And, as we finally return home past the Victor area, just a couple of more interesting photos of fun stuff… [caption id="attachment_2118" align="aligncenter" width="242"]Old Truck near Victor, WY Old Truck near Victor, WY[/caption] [caption id="attachment_2119" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Old Barn in the Mountains Old Barn in the Mountains[/caption]]]>

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