Grand Teton National Park opens for winter recreation

(Jackson, Wyo.) - This week, the winter season opened for Grand Teton National Park and the John D. Rockefeller, Jr. Memorial Parkway. Cross-country skiing and snowshoeing are popular winter activities in both the park and parkway. Many winter trails are skier tracked, but not groomed. The Teton Park Road, Moose-Wilson Road, and Signal Mountain Summit Road become backcountry trails in winter and are open to non-mechanized use only. The Teton Park Road will be machine groomed from the Taggart Lake parking area to the Signal Mountain Lodge junction for cross-country and skate skiing approximately two times per week. Grooming is scheduled to take place each Tuesday and Friday through March 15, 2016, though this schedule is dependent on snow and weather conditions. Skiers and snowshoers are not restricted to established trails. However for protection of wildlife, park visitors are required to observe the following public closures during winter: - Closed December 1 to April 1— Static Peak, Prospectors Mountain and Mount Hunt. - Closed December 15 to April 1— Snake River floodplain from Moran to Menor's Ferry near Moose, Buffalo Fork River floodplain within the park, Uhl Hill, and Kelly Hill. Additionally, visitors to the John D. Rockefeller, Jr. Memorial Parkway are reminded that swimming or bathing in a thermal pool or stream that has waters originating entirely from a thermal spring or pool is prohibited. “Hot-potting” is permitted in any creeks or pools not solely of thermal origin such as Polecat Creek. Ranger-led snowshoe hikes begin Saturday, December 26. The snowshoe tours begin at the Taggart Lake trailhead at 1:30 p.m. on Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday each week. The two-hour guided walks offer an opportunity to learn about snow science and winter ecology. All park visitor centers are closed for the winter season until the Craig Thomas Discovery & Visitor Center reopens on March 4, 2016. *Feature Photo: h/t david_jonason on Instagram / Pitchengine Communities* #buckrail #news #whatshappening