Photography is the story I fail to put into words.
But in case you want to read my words too...
Northern Utah Photographer and Videographer
In February, I went to Grand Teton National Park with my dear friend, Kristen. I only live 4 hours from the Tetons and I've visited it many times--but never ever have I been in the winter! When Kristen texted me back in November about possibly going with her in the winter, I immediately said "yes!" It was so fun to look forward to exploring the Tetons in a new to me season, and I must say, I was impressed! In fact, I had so much fun that when I got home, I told my husband that we need to take our boys there in the winter, because they would love it!
So for anyone who's like me and has ben to the Teton's in the summer, here's what made winter so different.
The sunrises were later, which made getting up for them a bit easier! (Though we were still awake before 6 am every morning.) But the early sunsets meant we could shoot sunset, then head back to Jackson for dinner and be in bed at a decent hour. I like my sleep!
Most of the interior park road is closed, so we spent time exploring more of the outer areas of the park that we don't see much of during the summer. In particular we went to Gros Ventre canyon area a few times, shot around the Gros Ventre river, explored the area behind the elk refuge, hiked in the snow to Taggart Lake, snowshoed to the Cunningham Cabin and stopped at spots on the main highway we'd never stopped at before.
I got to experience some cool things too! We were able to hear wolves, and even spotted a couple of them! They were sadly pretty far away, and even with my telephoto they look like little dots. :( But we also got to hear some coyotes hunting, and saw one eating on an two day old elk carcass. I never thought I'd want to watch a wild animal eat, but it was fascinating to see! We saw some trumpeter swans, a sage grouse, a couple of moose, a fox and a family of bison. I'd never seen the elk on refuge because they're only there in the winter, but that was pretty cool to see too! There was a lot more wildlife that I don't normally get to see in the summer, since the animals were all down in the lower elevations. (We see plenty of elk, moose and bison in the summer but not much else.)
I can't forget to mention the snow! There was so much of it! Even when we were wearing our snowshoes, we would sink down sometimes to mid-calf. Without the snowshoes, we would sometimes sink in up to our hips! It was crazy how deep it was, and it really made everything so white and beautiful! Along with the snow though came the colder temperatures. Don't ever go there in the winter unless you have some serious winter gear--one morning shooting the Milky Way, it was 16 below zero! We stayed close to the car so we could easily get in and warm up as necessary!
Overall, the experience was an amazing one and I'd do it again in a heartbeat. I'm so grateful that I live close enough to visit this majestic park a few times a year--only now I'm going to be adding winter to those visits!
Have you been to the Teton's in the winter? What did you experience?