13 Apr 2018
The shoulder seasons in Jackson Hole, or “off-seasons,” occur in the fall and springtime — between the ski-centric winters and the busy National Park summers. While things get less busy during this time, there’s nothing “off” about the off-season at all. In fact, the fall and springtime can be some of the best times to visit Jackson Hole! We all welcome and appreciate the warmer days, quiet streets and great dining options.
There are some great benefits if you are visiting the area during this time. We pulled together all of our recommended activities that take place after Jackson Hole Mountain Resort closes on April 10, 2018. Come take advantage of the deals, the lack of crowds, and the beautiful spring weather!
While some local folks leave town for exotic excursions in the springtime, the rest of us make dinner plans! With so many great dining options in Jackson Hole, off-season is the perfect time to enjoy your favorite restaurant or try something new. Some restaurants close for a brief time in the off-season, but many Jackson Hole restaurants stay open and offer awesome discounts during the shoulder season. Some even donate part of your bill to charity!
These dining deals can easily make dining out your favorite thing about an off-season Jackson Hole getaway. Here are some of our favorites:
Fine Dining Group — The Fine Dining Group encompasses many of our favorite Jackson Hole restaurants (including Il Villaggio Osteria). Through May 13, buy one entree, get the second entree for $2. The $2 is then donated to a local non-profit organization. Call Fine Dining for details!
Calico — Locals (with WY or ID drivers licenses) get 20% off food
The Blue Lion — 2 for 1 entrees
Flipping through the Jackson Hole Daily News, or visiting DishingJH.com, is usually the best place to get updated information on what restaurants are open and running specials.
ElkFest — Jackson Hole ElkFest, which takes place May 19-20, 2018, is an annual fundraising event hosted in the Town Square. The festival supports the National Elk Refuge through events such as the elk antler auction. There are also opportunities to learn about ecology and outdoor skills. ElkFest culminates in the High Noon Chili Cook-Off, where teams (including many local restaurants) compete to be named the best chili.
The spring weather is great for enjoying the variety of activities Jackson Hole offers. With warmer days, many of us can't wait to get on a bike or take out a boat. It’s also a great time to enjoy the open trails and get in some early hiking. However, the skis and snowboards aren't put away just yet, because the snow is still out there for those in the backcountry.
Grand Teton National Park — Located just north of Jackson Hole, Grand Teton is a magnet for summertime visitors. However, in the springtime, when the snow starts to melt, the Inner Loop Road of Grand Teton opens solely to bikers, runner, rollerbladers, rollerskiers, unicyclists... Grand Teton is your playground until May 1 (just not in a car).
Spring cycling in Grand Teton National Park.
As long as there’s snow in Grand Teton, you can go “crust” skiing on skate skis. This is a fast and fun way to enjoy the springtime, not to mention great exercise!
Backcountry Skiing — Skiing in Jackson Hole doesn’t stop when the resorts close. If you are well versed in avalanche training, backcountry skiing (and splitboarding) on Teton Pass and in Grand Teton are viable options. You can also go backcountry skiing with a guide service, many of which offer heli-skiing!
Wildlife Viewing — Just as we start to spend time outdoors in the spring, so do the animals of Jackson Hole. You definitely don’t want to get close to the grizzly bears (as they are waking up from hibernation), but you can certainly view them through binoculars! You’ll also start seeing bison, elk, moose, deer, fox and eagles. If you want to see more wildlife in a safe environment, book an eco-tour!
Walking around town during the off-season allows you to experience what Jackson Hole would have been like 30 years ago. It’s a different experience than the peak of summer. You can get great parking spots (did you know parking is free in Jackson?) while running errands or shopping in Jackson’s large variety of shops and galleries.
If you are planning on visiting Jackson Hole this spring, there is a lot of fun to anticipate. Just ask one of us at Rendezvous Mountain Rentals why we love the Jackson Hole off-season so much, and we will be happy to tell you about our favorite local activities!