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From Fishing Lines to Powder Lines

THOUGHTS DRIFT FROM FISHING LINES TO POWDER LINES THERE’S SNOW IN THE TETON MOUNTAINS!

O.K. Let’s not get ahead of ourselves. Yes it’s true that we’re having the second official snowfall of the season. Just last week the mountains, at least the peaks, were blanketed in the white stuff we so covet. Same thing is happening this week, but now we see the snow line drop closer and closer to the valley floor. It’s enough to really get the ski and snowboard juices flowing!

But hey, not so fast! Given the moisture we’ve enjoyed this month, the golf courses are green and lush, probably in the best shape of the season frankly. I played the Headwaters Golf Course at Teton Springs Resort this week.

 

Stay and Play Golf Packages

It was later in the day when there wasn’t a whisper of wind and the late September light was breathtaking on the course and the surrounding mountains. Gosh, it’s tough to beat the fall season for the cool, crisp days and the way the air and sun caress your face. Teton Springs Lodge & Spa offers a “Stay & Play” Golf Package and it’s circling back for a repeat performance beginning October 1. This gives everyone who loves the game a chance to play this remarkable course while lapping up the luxury a room in the lodge so graciously provides.

That’s the beauty of Teton Valley. We know warm days will be back so let the snow pile high on the mountains while we sneak in the last month or so of doing all the pre winter things we love. There’s fewer and fewer drift boats flying by on the highway for sure, but guaranteed there’s still plenty of browns and rainbows to net on the local rivers. The solitude that comes with dropping a line in the Teton River or South Fork is reason enough to fly fish this time of year. You practically have the best open water and riffles all to yourself.

Biking Around the Most Beautiful Scenery

Biking is another terrific way to breeze thru autumn in Teton Valley. Guests at Teton Springs Lodge & Spa head over to Fitzgerald’s in downtown Victor for a fabulous cup of java (some say the best coffee in town!), rent the cool road or mountain bike and head out to any number of Teton Valley destinations. The staff at Fitzgerald’s are the local experts and work hard to make every cycling experience your best. A hotel group just did the “Rails to Trails” tour from Tetonia to Ashton, with the help of Fitzgerald’s crew and came back with amazing tales. This is a gorgeous trek over old railroad bridges and restored rail trestles thru Teton and Freemont County’s most spectacular countryside. Kudos to Idaho Parks & Rec for this one. Can you imagine this same ride now that the leaves are changing colors?!

Grant Teton Brewing – The 208

One thing this bike group packed plenty of for their two day trek to Ashton (why rush?!) was the latest and greatest signature brew produced right here in Teton Valley at Grand Teton Brewing. It’s aptly called “208,” which of course is Idaho’s area code. Wish I could take credit for that marketing genius; it’s easy to remember the name of this “born and raised in Idaho” session ale (as their promotion goes), but this brew is also memorable for its crisp taste which is extremely pleasing to the palate. This beer is definitely 100% pure, just like the state that gave it birth.

The Stillwaters Spa & Salon at Teton Springs continues to tempt us with special “shoulder season” offers. They’ll extend your massage from 60 to 90 minutes while also decreasing the price. They’re also highlighting lots of great new products so time for a bit of indulgence.

And while you’re scooping up the off-season specials, be sure to buy that ski pass at the pre-season deals. Dreams at a discount. That’s what you get this time of year. Gosh, I love Fall!

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Great Outdoors, Culture and Culinary Delight in the Teton Valley

TETON VALLEY – WHERE THE GREAT OUTDOORS, CULTURE, AND CULINARY DELIGHTS MEET!

September is a beautiful time to visit the Yellowstone-Teton area. Judging by the traffic on the main thoroughfares, you can tell many travelers are clinging to summer for as long as they can. Campers fill the grocery store parking lots, and every other car seems to be loaded to the gills in search of adventure, carting everything from kayaks, mountain bikes, 4-wheelers and everything in-between. Drift boats roar by headed to the South Fork of the Snake or one of the other reputable fisheries in this Rocky Mountain playground. Canoes drop from the banks into the Teton River for that leisure cruise offering unsurpassed views of the Teton Mountains around every bend. Bird watchers will also have plenty to see on the Teton as this river is home to a variety of winged creatures including owls, ducks, cranes, sandpipers and more. A moose and her offspring will also appear quite frequently, and, they always have the right of way.

Golfing in the Teton Valley, Art Festival, The Perfect Time of Year

Yes, one could safely say the Fall "shoulder season" is definitely a thing of the past. Savvy travelers have discovered that things don’t slow down after Labor Day in this neck of the woods. Golfing on the Headwaters Golf Course at Teton Springs is simply delightful right now. Tee times are easier to secure, daytime temps are textbook perfect, and specks of gold are splashing the aspens as they make their transition into what promises to be a brilliant display of fall foliage in the coming weeks.

The Jackson Hole Fall Arts Festival is also underway and most guests at Teton Springs this time of year have this prized event in their sights. The Fall Arts Festival, after all, is recognized nationally as one of the premier cultural events not just in the Rocky Mountains, but in the entire country.

Art lovers will also be pleasantly surprised at the number of reputable artists who call Teton Valley, Idaho, home and the arts are definitely becoming a significant economic driver in this community. Visitors and residents alike will have a blast discovering local treasures in a variety of non- traditional outlets. Collectibles are also more affordable in this market so expect that the original oil depicting the spectacular Teton Mountains could actually fit your budget.

Great Food and Entertainment in the Teton Valley – Victor & Driggs

A day of searching for that perfect one-of-a-kind painting, antique rifle or hand-carved duck decoy in the charming Teton Valley towns can be exhausting. It’s time to relax! Enjoy a nice meal at the Headwaters Grille or treat yourself to a massage at the Stillwaters Spa & Salon. And if you’re out and about; well, the choices surprise even the seasoned traveler. It appears that foodies are also attracted to the valley of the Tetons and one can literally eat their way thru Victor, Driggs and Tetonia.

Teton Valley continues to build on its eclectic array of eateries. Of late, a genuine French restaurant joined the ranks. The Frainkin family arrived in Idaho with multi generations in tow and a very impressive resume. This venture, definitely a family affair, recently opened Le Paris Bruxelles on Main Street in Victor. The chef, who once created dishes for Belgium royalty, was drawn to the American West for its wide-open spaces and the freedom enjoyed by U.S. citizens. Dining is an art form perfected by the French so leave your fast food mentality at home if you visit this charming Main Street restaurant.

At Le Paris Bruxelles diners honor the French tradition of viewing food as an art form and take their time sampling the daily specials. I’m not very familiar with French food but I am making it a priority to at least learn to say, "I’d like a chocolate croissant please," in the native tongue of this very intriguing establishment.

The sound of music in the valley is definitely slowing down but it is by no means over. It was a terrific summer season of "Music on Main" in downtown Victor and Grand Targhee’s music festivals were a roaring success. However, "Mulligan Monday’s," a night of free music in the Headwaters Grille at Teton Springs, is still in full swing and features some of the best musicians in the region.

One beloved resident years ago coined the phrase "Driggs, Idaho, cultural hub of the Universe." He was of course poking fun at our low-key, agriculture based community, but boy, he should see us now! Come visit us now and stay in one of our beautiful luxury lodge rooms in Victor, ID. Or book a beautiful log cabin home to rent for the weekend, or week, or even better, weeks!

 

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Summer is Flying by at Break Neck Speed – Let’s Play!

It’s hard to believe that we’re approaching mid-August already. Maybe it’s true what they say about getting older; the hours in the day wiz by and weeks turn into months in a blink of an eye. Some days I start to panic, how will I ever check off all the fun stuff left to do this summer in Teton Valley?

There’s so much energy around Teton Springs Resort this time of year. Families are frantically trying to squeeze in the last bit of quality time with the kids as the target date for heading back to school looms just around the corner. The college kids working at Teton Springs are clicking off the days until they return to life in the dorm, football practice and advanced math. Is it my imagination or are kids forced to abandon summer so much earlier than we use to? Labor Day use to signal an official end to the crazy, hazy, lazy days of summer. Not anymore. Nowadays kids face their first English quiz before the summer ending holiday kicks off. What’s the rush?

Golfing, Yellowstone, Hiking, the Crisp Air

There’s no better time to be in this Yellowstone-Teton area than now and it becomes even more glorious as we cross into September. There’s already a subtle coolness in the Teton air, optimum for that afternoon hike up Pole Canyon, perfect for that late Summer beautiful hike in the Teton Valley.

The days turn crisper and the threat of afternoon thunderstorms become a distant memory. The sunlight on the resort’s Headwaters Course this time of year only accentuates how truly beautiful this entire landscape is, especially in the evening hours. That probably explains why August & September are also the premier months to say “I DO” at Teton Springs. It’s a chance to host a wedding in one of America’s most spectacular destinations, a location guaranteed to wow even the most seasoned traveler.

The Perfect Wedding Overlook

Even if weddings aren’t your thing, it’s hard being at this venue and not getting misty eyed, beautiful bride notwithstanding. It’s almost overload for the senses – the panoramic view of the mountains, the aspen stands bordering the Caribou-Targhee National Forest and the lone fly fisherman making the perfect cast in one of the resort’s lakes. The Teton Springs brochure can’t begin to do this scene justice. From the resort’s new wedding site, the Caddis Lake Overlook, you can also sip a cocktail watching golfers tee off on the resort’s signature 10th hole overlooking Caddis Lake. This usually provides more entertainment value than the Hokey Pokey or tossing of the garter ever could!

The great Byron Nelson and his design team certainly created a masterpiece with the Headwaters Golf Course. The five tee-boxes on each hole present options galore for the seasoned golfer boasting the low handicap and also for the beginner who is perhaps more easily intimidated.

In addition to attracting happy couples to the resort, late summer and fall are optimum times for the leisure traveler to cruise thru Yellowstone-Teton country. Right about now the RV’s start to disappear from the highways and you practically have the scenic overlooks and the many points of interest all to yourself.

The Yellowstone-Grand Teton Loop

My favorite, and undoubtedly one of the most breathtaking drives in North America, has to be the Yellowstone-Grand Teton Loop Tour. The most critical aspect of this particular road trip is starting your journey at precisely the right place. Most of us “locals” have taken this route, long before tourism officials officially designated it as one the “Top 10 Scenic Drives in the Northern Rockies” (www.drivethetop10.com). You begin your sight-seeing adventure in Victor, just steps from your lodge room at Teton Springs.

Beautiful Grand Teton Mountains and Surrounding Area

Head north thru Teton Valley with the majestic Grand Teton Mountains guiding your every turn as you head towards Yellowstone National Park’s West Yellowstone entrance. The first town you’ll hit after leaving Teton Valley is Ashton, Idaho. Their welcome sign says “Adventure Starts Here,” and that’s no exaggeration. You’ll need fuel for this sightseeing trip so don’t leave Ashton without a quick stop at the historic “Frostop.” The best chocolate malts and tater tots are delivered right to your car by Ashton’s fresh faced teens happy to serve. It’s a very pleasant journey down memory lane especially for the younger generation accustomed to the modern day same all, same all, drive thru joints.

The thundering Upper and Lower Mesa falls are next on this agenda, two of the last undisturbed waterfalls of consequence in the west.

This loop also claims Harriman State park and the famous Henry’s Fork of the Snake River. Hope you packed the fly rod. Next stop Yellowstone and then back to your comfy digs at Teton Springs. Enjoy the ride!

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