Greetings from the Resident Naturalist
Greetings from the Nature Center,
Earlier this week, as I walked down the wooden deck toward the Nature Center, I stopped and looked out upon the Tetons cloaked in a beautiful early morning light. Standing there, I started thinking about the wonderful day hikes that many of us enjoyed this past summer season. And as I reminisced about our hikes to glorious places like Goodwin Lake, Ski Lake or Jackson Peak, I remembered the hillsides of spectacular wildflowers that left us nearly speechless, the blue skies and the wonderful conversations friends have when exploring wild places in the outdoors. But suddenly, I started to wonder about all our hikes in a slightly different manner...just how many miles did we actually hike, how many total feet in elevation might we have gone and what was the average distance we hiked each day? Without a moment to lose, there I was at the desk with calculator in hand. For those who enjoy hiking, here are a few rather impressive numbers: number of group hikes: 25; total number of miles hiked: 132 (about the distance from 3 Creek Ranch to the northern end of Yellowstone Park); average number of miles per hike: 5.2; and then there was that little issue of hiking up hills...in fact, the total combined elevation gain from all hikes was 20,530 feet!—an average of about 820 feet of uphill per hike. We reached the alpine summit of Jackson Peak at 10,741 feet to the flat river bottoms of the Snake River around 6,400 feet in elevation. Along the way, we leaped into alpine lakes, enjoyed our lunch sitting in meadows of endless wildflowers, we watched songbirds, river otters, bald eagles, elk, bison, butterflies and clouds move overhead, we experienced wind that nearly blew us off our feet and we hiked through waist deep water exploring the Snake River bottoms. And once home at the end of the day, we left our wet hiking boots on the deck by the front door and spent the rest of the evening realizing why we so love living here. Simply being outside, learning, experiencing, being active... All parts of the 3 Creek Ranch Outdoor Pursuits Program.
I hope you will join all of us next summer for another season of hiking. As always, please stop by the Nature Center to say hello or call if I can help answer any questions or assist you in arranging your next outdoor adventure in Jackson Hole.
I trust you and your family are well and wish you my very best over the coming Holidays.
3 Creek Ranch