Guide to Jackson Hole: Season by Season
Wyoming doesn’t exactly seem like a vacation paradise. There are no palm trees or ocean beaches, and the mountainous landscape is blanketed in snow for half the year. But this sleepy state draws more than ten million visitors each year, thanks to Yellowstone National Park and Grand Teton as well as popular ski resorts. Most of the tourism is centered around Jackson Hole; the valley between the Teton Mountain Range and Gros Ventre mountains.
Unlike many traditional travel hotspots, there’s no bad time to visit Jackson Hole. The valley –
which includes the towns of Jackson, Teton Village, Wilson, the Aspens, Moran Junction, and Moose – remains active throughout all four seasons. If you’re planning a visit to Yellowstone, Grand Teton and Jackson Hole, here’s what travelers can expect throughout the year.
Skiing is the main wintertime vacation activity in Jackson. The town is home to three ski resorts – Jackson Hole Mountain Resort, Snow King Mountain Resort and Grand Targhee Resort – as well as snow tubing parks for little ones and those wanting to branch out from skiing and snowboarding. Both Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Park are open to select winter travelers, though you’ll likely need a guide. Whether you prefer snowshoeing your way through buffalo country or traveling in a luxury motor coach, Scenic Safaris can help you navigate through the snowy mountains and plains of northern Wyoming.
Come spring, the snows start to melt and animals awaken from hibernation. This is a great time to visit Wyoming’s national parks. It’s relatively uncrowded, and Yellowstone’s bison population is at its most active – increasing the likelihood of snapping a selfie with one of these majestic creatures (in the far background, naturally… you don’t want to wander too close). Fly fishing season on the Snake River is at its peak in March, and local events heat up along with the weather. March through May, travelers can enjoy Western activities such as the Mountain Man Rendezvous, Old West Days and the Jackson Hole Rodeo.
Temperatures in the mid-70s to low 80s open a broader range of activities near Jackson Hole. June through August, rafting is extremely popular along the Snake River. Scenic Safaris offers two types of raft tours; a scenic wildlife excursion through calmer waters and a more adventurous ride down eight Class I-III rapids. The latter traverses 8 miles downriver from West Table Boat Ramp in your choice of a 16-person inflatable boat or a smaller raft with 6 active paddling positions. Other traditional summer activities include hiking through Yellowstone National Park and Grand Teton National Park, canoeing and kayaking, Jeep tours and horseback riding.
Fall in Jackson is colorful and picturesque, creating the kind of postcard perfect scenes found in brochures and travel guides. Wildlife is active inside Grand Teton and Yellowstone, with male elk “bugling” plaintive calls in search of a mate at the nearby National Elk Refuge. Fun runs pick up pace in fall, and September’s Fall Arts Festival draws crowds from across the globe. Artsy types can also check out touring bands at the historic Pink Garter Theater or view paintings by Andy Warhol and Georgia O’Keeffe at the National Museum of Wildlife Art.
No matter what time of year you visit Jackson Hole, there’s wildlife to see, museums to visit and mountains to explore. Call 888-734-8898 or CLICK HERE for information on guided tours and adventure rides near Grand Teton National Park, Yellowstone or Jackson Hole, WY.