As the northwest continues to be gripped by the last clutches of winter, snow still finds a way to fall even as the temperature warms and greenery has returned to the valley. Today was no exception as the afternoon brought on a small blizzard in Teton pass and the storms dusted the valley floor. Frustrating as this may be to the avid outdoorsmen, I am happy to see our regional water source bathed in a thick layer of life giving ice water.
Today's trip was a brief one with our visit to the national park being limited to Taggart and Bradley Lakes, but nonetheless the Tetons provided a majestic backdrop to our backwoods hike! The Grand emerged from the clouds just long enough for us to snap a few shots and bask in the full glory of the rugged mountains. The Sun bathed the valley floor with a warm light as the brisk 40° breeze glided through the trees keeping us well refreshed and cool. I got away with wearing jeans and a flannel, no jacket needed after we embarked on the hike. Gratefully we finished our excursion right as dark clouds zeroed in on Jackson Hole and began to dump thick flakes.
The pass was mostly clear, slick in the morning but drivable. The trails, especially in the shadows, still had several inches to a foot of snow, packed down, but still slick. Along the sunny-side of the rolling hills, the trail became more passable but muddy. Altogether, not a bad experience, but be mindful the Tetons' spring isn't until late May early June. Taggart and Bradley lakes were still covered in ice with only a small section of Taggart thawed out where the lake drains to the Snake below.
The crisp mountain air, accented by the sweet smell of pine and spruce, caught our attention immediately. We were so carried away by the sights and smells we barely felt the 6 miles we hiked. Even with an injured hip I had no problem keeping up and loved the trip!
If you are looking for a relaxing day in the mountains, I highly recommend this quick stop in the Tetons! Well worth the gorgeous drive (including a detour through Swan Valley on the way there or back if you have the time).
Enjoy the pictures from today!