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With crisp air and sparkling snow, Teton Valley shines in the winter. Whether you’re looking for a high-adrenaline thrill or a family-friendly adventure, you’ll find it all on the western side of the Tetons—with spectacular views to boot. Dress warmly and bring everything you’ll need to safely experience a day outdoors in Eastern Idaho’s cold winter weather.
Ski or Snowboard at Grand Targhee Resort
Hit the slopes at Grand Targhee Resort and enjoy the annual 500 inches of snowfall—that’s over 41 feet—the resort typically receives. With over 2,600 acres of terrain, including five lifts and some hikeable terrain, it could take a whole winter to explore. A Magic Carpet helps the little ones learn their turns while experienced and iron-legged riders can lap the 2,270 feet of vertical. Ski and snowboard lessons are available, and terrain parks offer a varying rotation of thrills with an array of features including jumps, rails, boxes, spines, and more.
Fat Bike, Snowshoe, or Nordic Ski
Teton Valley Trails and Pathways maintains numerous multi-use trails throughout the valley that are open for walking, snowshoeing, Nordic skiing, and fat biking. TVTAP provides an up-to-date grooming report with trail status and grooming updates as well as trail maps. Check out the 4.5 km Nordic trail at Sherman Park, which was formerly called Pioneer Park until it was renamed in 2017 to honor local leader Craig Sherman. The Teton Springs Trail provides 8 km of routes to explore, and the Driggs Nordic Trail has 5 km of groomed trails. Grand Targhee Resort also has groomed trails to enjoy, including 15 miles of Nordic and 7 miles of singletrack.
Cat Ski Powder
If it’s powder you seek, explore Grand Targhee Resort’s Cat Skiing offerings. Specialized snowcats take up to 12 experienced skiers and snowboarders at a time out to the 600 acres reserved just for cat skiing. Get your powder fix riding up to 18,000 vertical feet a day with an average of 8 to 11 runs.
Enjoy a Sleigh Ride Dinner
Linn Canyon Ranch offers sleigh ride tours that begin while sipping hot chocolate or cider and getting cozy under warm blankets in a sleigh pulled by stunning Percheron draft horses. Keep a sharp eye peeled for wildlife on the sleigh ride and then head into the cozy lodge for appetizers, drinks, and a gourmet dinner.
Join a hockey scrimmage, practice your figure skating moves, or just take some easy laps around the rink at Victor’s Kotler Ice Arena. This covered outdoor ice rink boasts mountain views and offers public open skating three days a week. The variety of programs for kids and adults includes pond hockey, skating lessons, and more. Skate rental is available on-site.
Take a Snowmobile Tour
Take a guided snowmobile tour to experience some of Idaho’s best backcountry. Enjoy a full-day excursion to Mesa Falls and see both the upper and lower falls 100-foot waterfalls. Ride powder in meadows, take winding forest trails, visit springs (keep an eye out for spawning fish), and look for moose along the way. Guided tours of the Big Hole Mountains are also a fun option for riders of all experience levels, with both half and full-day tours available.
Feature image credited to Grand Targhee Resort.
Kristen Pope is a Jackson, Wyoming-based freelance writer and editor who writes about outdoor adventure, science, conservation, and travel for NationalGeographic.com, Backpacker, Audubon.com, Western Confluence, and Discover, just to name a few. Visit her at www.kepope.com.
Published on February 1, 2018