Minor adventures of an old Gunks climber living in Wyoming.
Friday, 30 January 2009
Snake River, Jackson Hole
Arrived in Jackson in the afternoon. Just enough time to walk around a bit and grab a bite before heading to the town ski trail along the Snake. The parking lot is on the east side of the bridge crossing the Snake river on the road to Wilson. It is a dog party place; We skied from about 4:30 until almost 6 and people were out in force on a warm evening walking their dogs. The trail has a track and is groomed for skate skiing too. Lots of joggers. Saw three moose. The ski up the river is just shy of two miles one way. Further up river is protected winter range for elk and moose.
When we arrived there were a couple of fly fishermen working the water on a little side stream of the snake just about the bridge. They said they were killing 'em on midges.
The Tetons are magnificent. Dave Pearson and I climbed the Grand Teton in 1993 (or was it 1992?) We arrived in Jackson in late June and there still was way too much snow. We had planned on doing the Direct Exum Ridge, but it was heavily iced and so we did the Owen Spalding route instead. At the Upper Saddle we ran into a guy who was soloing who asked if he could tag along on our rope, which we agreed to. Clouds were scudding by and as we exited the icy cracks to the summit they intensified. I lead up (still roped) to the summit first. And then I felt something on the top of my head, like some one gently scratching my scalp, but through my hat. And then I hear a bit of a humming sound. I realized that I was about to be hit bu lightening. I yelled down to Dave and Georgia I was coming down. I tossed the ice axe and rand down the snowfield off the top to a small rock ledge real quick, stacked some rope under me and crouched down. We were not hit and after the cloud passed we all three dashed to the summit. A few minutes later the same cloud passed over Mt Moran and let loose with many lightening strikes. We only stayed on the summit long enough to snap a photo and then got back down as fast a possible to avoid the next cloud which was approaching fast.