Friday, September 22, 2017

Snow on the Mountains at Jackson Hole.

September 22, 2017; Jackson Hole, Wyoming.

Yesterday morning, September 21st.

So … I am posting this in real time, and will get back to the proper sequence of events with the next posting.  Last Friday I came out from my northern Wind River Range campsite, with a view of the Grand Tetons 23 miles away (see the next two posts when they are posted), because there was a chance of snow … chance of SNOW(!) … I mean it was 75ºF the day before, on the 14th of September!!!  So I had the foresight to dig out my long-johns and light Winter boots (as opposed to my super heavy duty Winter boots), even though it was 75ºF.  Good thing, since it was in the forties Fahrenheit on the Friday, and wet and even though I didn’t put the long-johns or boots on, they were to hand when needed.  I toddled on down to Jackson Hole, and posted on my blog (which I’ve been doing for the past week, amongst other PC work), and that night found a campsite up in the Gros Ventre Range on the east side of Jackson Hole (the Teton Range being on the west side).

View northeast from my camp.
I expected a few flurries and a dusting of snow, which is what we got, and then back to warmer temperatures.  But the cooler weather has remained and on Wednesday night a Winter Storm Warning was issued for 8 to 18 inches in the mountains above 8500’!  I was at 8570’ that last Friday, but at 7913’ ever since.  And at my altitude I found about 4” on my vehicle on Thursday morning … the 21st September(!) … 1st day of Autumn(!!).  I was only worried about getting down the mountain … I didn’t want to slide over the edge and go rolling down the mountainside, but I needn’t have worried, as the ambient temperature of the gravel road, melted off the snow, and so it was not a problem.  I did however go slower than normal as I didn’t want to hit any slippery mud sections and disappear over the side through negligence.  Of course 1900’ below it was only a cold rain in Jackson.  I went back up last night and more snow this morning, but it was warmer this morning.  I do love it though, these variations in weather; it makes for a wider range of subject matter for future works.  It is interesting that the first snows have fallen, yet so many of the deciduous trees still are green, and even up on the mountain, the Aspens have yet to reach their prime.

Ambient road temperature keeps the snow down … only one pick-up truck has passed by.

The long-johns did go on last Saturday, and the Winter boots, only on Wednesday night.  When the cloud clears, I am looking forward to serious recon of this area with all the new snow on the mountain tops.  I shall take a few days to do so, hopefully a painting or two, buzz briefly through Yellowstone (much fewer visitors due to the weather), and then head down to the four corners region … to the Europeans, that is where the States of Colorado, Utah, Arizona & New Mexico all connect.  Warmer still at this time of year.  So here are a few photos of the snow.

The lower slopes of the Tetons in sunlight to the west,
below the cloud above me.

Close up view … I think that is the Grand Teton.

Cloud rising.
Is it clearing or is that just a sucker hole
(Portland-speak for ‘a break in the cloud that suckers you into believing it is going to clear’)

On the down the mountain.

Oh! … more sucker holes?

The first dispersed campsite up the mountain …
this guy is hard-core; note glimpse of hammock under the tarp to the right.

And down on the valley floor with the outskirts of Jackson in the distance.

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