The weather wasn’t too bad as we left Salt Lake City but as we sought out a golden arch for morning coffee the sleet and then the snow started. At least there was no fog for this drive but outside it was icy and continued to be as we arrived in the beautiful Jackson Hole Valley in Wyoming, thankfully to a very cosy and welcoming hotel. Jackson seems to be an all year destination for visitors wanting to hike, or ski in the winter, sightsee in the beautiful Grand Teton Park or as a staging point on the way to the nearby Yellowstone National Park.
It’s obviously a tourist destination with lots of shops and cafes around a central park area. We enjoyed a wettish and coolish walk around. One of us really liked the flag carrying safety feature of the pedestrian crossing! Others had a really good shopping experience and have a largish momento of the visit (not me!).
Outside the village the Grand Teton National Park had stunning scenery from every angle as the image below shows. The reflection on the lake was just lovely and from other view points we could see glaciers and other features as the fog and mist dipped up and down!
The trees in the valley (too small to really see here) are mainly Lodgepole Pines, so called because they grow tall and straight and their trunks served Native Americans as tipi poles.
We came hoping to sight some of the wildlife in the area – especially the famous bison herds that roam in this region and elk in the refuge area outside town. We had a fruitless first day, sighting only a small animal called a pica which I couldn’t capture with my camera. We did see some lovely small alpine type flowers among the grey green of the salt brush that covers the valley floor.
We happened to be in Jackson on the Memorial Day weekend. On the Saturday the Memorial Day parade was held which seemed to be a combination of a veteran’s parade and a community parade as the pics below illustrate. There were many police about on horseback acting as marshalls and parading too. Only a couple of the now very old veterans there – see in the jeep top left pic below.
Outside the town and before we started out on the scenic road through the park and on to Yellowstone, we took a detour to Mormon Row (top left below) near which we saw one of many signs warning us not meddle with the wildlife which we still hadn’t sighted. However not far along the road we did a double take and realised what we were looking at in the distance were not cattle…..!
As well as the Lodgepole Pines there are beautiful birches around the area – some still fairly bare of leaves, some with new growth, depending on how sheltered they are I think. I especially like their silvery trunks.