Few areas in North America can compete with Jackson Hole when it comes to the breadth, beauty, and variety of backcountry opportunities. For touring skiers, one of the easier areas (because of flatter routes) is along the base of the Tetons toward Jenny and Jackson lakes. Telemark skiers (or even skiers on alpine gear) can find numerous downhill routes by skiing in from Teton Pass, snow stability permitting. A guide isn’t required for tours to the national-park lakes, but might be helpful for those unfamiliar with the lay of the land; trails and trail markers set in summer can become obscured by winter snows. When you are touring elsewhere, a guide familiar with the area and avalanche danger is a virtual necessity. The Tetons are big country, and the risks are commensurately large as well.
Jackson Hole Mountain Guides. Jackson Hole Mountain Guides leads half-day and full-day backcountry tours into Grand Teton National Park and Teton Pass for strong intermediate to advanced skiers. 1325 S. Hwy. 89, Suite 104, Jackson, WY, 83001. 307/733–4979. www.jhmg.com.
Jackson Hole Mountain Guides. Jackson Hole Mountain Guides leads strenuous backcountry tours. 1325 S. Highway 89, Suite 104, Jackson, WY, 83001. 307/733–4979. www.jhmg.com.
Jackson Hole Nordic Tours. Naturalist guides lead cross-country and snowshoe tours. Rental packages begin at $20, and tours start at $210. Sled-dog tours are available (call to inquire about prices). Teton Village, WY, 83025. 307/739–2629 or 800/450–0477.
4,139-foot vertical drop; 2,500 skiable acres; 10% beginner, 40% intermediate, 50% expert; 1 tram, 1 gondola, 6 quad chairs, 2 triple chairs, 1 double chair, 1 magic carpet.
In general, heli-skiing is best done when there has been relatively little recent snowfall. For two or three days after a storm, good powder skiing can usually be found within the ski area.
High Mountain Heli-Skiing. Daily trips can be arranged through High Mountain Heli-Skiing. Jackson Hole Mountain Resort base area, Teton Village, WY, 83025. 307/733–3274. www.heliskijackson.com.
Lessons and Programs
Jackson Hole Mountain Sports School. Half-day group lessons at the Jackson Hole Mountain Sports School start at $115. There are extensive children's programs, including lessons for kids three and older, and day care is available for children starting at six months old. Nordic-skiing lessons are possible; call for pricing and availability. Teton Village, WY, 83025. 307/733–2292 or 800/450–0477.
Jackson Hole Ski Camps. For expert skiers, the Jackson Hole Ski Camps, headed by such skiers as Tommy Moe, the 1994 Olympic gold medalist, and top snowboarders like Julie Zell and Stephen Koch, run for four or five days, teaching everything from big-mountain free-skiing to racing techniques. Rates start at $1,050 per person, not including lift tickets. Teton Village, WY, 83025. 307/739–2779 or 800/450–0477.
Lift tickets start at $101. You can save about 10% to 20% if you buy a 5- to 15-day ticket.
Equipment can be rented at ski shops in Jackson and Teton Village.
Jackson Hole Sports. Jackson Hole Sports, in the Bridger Center at the ski area, offers ski- and snowboard-rental packages starting at $39.50 a day. Booking online saves you 20 percent. Teton Village, WY, 83025. 307/739–2687. www.jacksonhole.com/jh-sports.html.
Pepi Stiegler Sports Shop. You can buy or rent skis or snowboards at Pepi Stiegler Sports Shop, which is run by the famous Stiegler family. Daughter Resi, who calls Jackson Hole home, competed in the 2014 Olympics in Sochi, Russia. Pepi, her father, is a native of Austria who won a bronze in the giant slalom at the 1964 Innsbruck games. Ski rentals start at $39; snowboard rentals are $49. The store is at the base of Rendezvous Mountain. 3395 W. McCollister Dr., Teton Village, WY, 83025. 307/733–4505. www.pepistieglersports.com.
Teton Pines Nordic Center (Teton Village 307/733–1500. www.tetonpinescrosscountryskicenter.com) is 4 miles south of the resort base along Wyoming 390. The scenic 17 km (10½ miles) of expertly groomed track is relatively flat, meandering along the terrain that’s an exclusive golf course in summers. Day passes cost $15. Rentals and lessons are available.