A Grand Beginning to the New Year
Introducing a new video about Grand Teton National Park Foundation! We are delighted to have this informative, three minute long piece to help us share the beauty of Grand Teton and the importance of its protection in a variety of settings. Along with stunning views of the park, the video highlights information about park history, wildlife, and current projects of the Foundation. And the best part of all? With the pro bono support of advertising specialists with offices around the country, Miller Ad Agency, we were able to create this
spectacular video at no cost!
Wondering how we got our hands on such stellar photography?
The following photographers were extremely generous in donating the use of their photos in this video:
Doug Ayers, David Bowers (www.davidbowersphotography.com/), Mike Cavaroc (archive.freeroamingphotography.com/), Jimmy Chin (www.jimmychin.com/), Irene Greenberg, Henry Holdsworth (www.wildbynaturegallery.com), Nic Lehoux (www.niclehoux.com), Timothy Mayo, Ed Riddell (www.edwardriddell.com/), John Slaughter (www.johnslaughterphotography.com/) and Diana Stratton
Many of these prints are for sale online!
Check out these photographers' websites and bring the incredible views of Grand Teton to your home.
February 14th is Just Around the Corner...
Surprise Someone Special!
| NPS Academy: A New Take on Career Preparation
For a number of last year's National Park Service (NPS) Academy students, spring break in Grand Teton represented an experience far beyond the bounds of typical. Many were unaccustomed to snow and had never spent significant time in a national park before. For those students, the opportunity to spend spring break in a career preparation program--amid the snow-shrouded, towering Tetons--was accompanied by the exciting challenge of participating in new activities and exploring an unfamiliar place.
Yet for program participant Eric Sheue, a Jackson native who could hardly have been more in his element that week, the NPS Academy encompassed an entirely different array of learning experiences. In describing some of the week's activities, Sheue, who is visually impaired, recalls staying at the back of the group for the duration of a day hike in order to assist some of the students who had less experience on snowshoes. For Sheue, the week delivered opportunities for personal growth in the form of leadership skills and an ever-growing passion for the area's national park.
Building on a familiarity with the park that dates back to school field trips, volunteer stints at the visitor center in Moose, and regular visits with family and friends over the years, Sheue jumped at the opportunity to participate in the NPS Academy, a Foundation-funded program for diverse college students that launched in Grand Teton in 2011. The NPS Academy is part of the Department of the Interior's broad outreach effort to help parks prepare the next generation of natural resource professionals that mirrors the diversity of the United States.
Sheue and the rest of the Academy students spent a week in Grand Teton in March 2011, quickly becoming a tightly knit group while working and learning in the park with staff members from the Teton Science Schools. Each student was also connected to a national park staff member as a formal mentor, which exposed students to the inner workings of parks and the variety of career fields that operate within the system.
"It gave us an idea of what is available in the NPS and how broad the spectrum really is," says Sheue. "Back at school, we all got calls or emails from someone at the NPS about internship positions that matched our interests and skills. They were offering us jobs for the summer."
Although NPS Academy students were placed in a variety of positions at national parks across the country, Sheue chose to sign on with the project management team here in Grand Teton for the summer.
"I love learning about my home," he explains. "Not everyone gets to live in an environment like this."
Sheue was involved in a number of interesting projects last summer, including parking management research and accessibility evaluation, but it was not until he gave his first interpretation presentation to a group of middle and high school kids that he recognized his niche within the NPS.
"I was talking to the kids and they were actually understanding and listening to me. I realized that it's always been a passion of mine to educate visitors about this park that I love."
Currently back in school at Utah State, where he is pursuing a degree in Recreation Resource Management, Sheue hopes to return to the park next year as an Academy peer mentor, though the position is highly competitive due to popularity. He stays up-to-date with his Academy group via Facebook and keeps in regular touch with his mentor at Grand Teton, who continues to share ideas and methods for achieving a career in interpretation with the NPS.
Eric Sheue hardly needed confirmation of his passion for the National Park Service, but as he prepares to make the transition from classroom to career path, his summer with the Academy and resulting professional relationships will undoubtedly serve him well.
Best of luck in your future endeavors, Eric! Thanks for sharing your NPS Academy story!
|The NPS Academy 2011|
The program returns in March 2012 to connect a new group of students to an invaluable education. For more information on how to support the NPS Academy and other Foundation-funded youth programs, contact Leslie Mattson, or click the link below!
Stay up-to-date on wildlife behavior in Grand Teton with our monthly briefings!
All animals that migrate have now left the Teton valley, including the pronghorn on their famous "Path of the Pronghorn" migration. All resident wildlife, which lives in or around the park year-round, is drawing on essential winter adaptations for survival. The need to conserve energy is at a premium, making any unnecessary disturbance, for example by humans or dogs, potentially life threatening.
- Moose use their long legs to move through deep snow to areas of preferred forage. Moose calves remain with their mothers through the winter and follow behind them while trail breaking through the snow. Moose also use their highly developed sense of smell to find only the most nutritious parts of shrubs under the snow.
- Hibernating animals, such as black and grizzly bears, benefit from deepening snows, which provide better insulation.
- Bison use their massive heads, thick skin, and muscular necks to move from snow side to side, creating craters where they can access buried forage.
- As days gradually lengthen, ravens, bald eagles, and great horned owls -- some of the area's earliest nesters -- begin courtship activities.
- Wolverines, Canada Lynx, and wolves remain highly active, using large, snow-adapted feet to help move through the environment.
- Like the mother moose and her offspring, wolves also travel in single file lines through deep snow for efficiency.
- The American Dipper, also known as the Water Ouzel, remains highly active, seeking areas of open, moving water where they bob on rocks between dives for aquatic insects.
Photo credit: David Bowers
This spectacular shot of a bald eagle was taken one morning in late December in
Grand Teton near the National Elk Refuge and Gros Ventre River.
Visit David Bowers' website to see more of his work!
Send us your photos of wildlife in Grand Teton so we can share them with others on Facebook, Twitter and in these monthly eNewsletters!
Winter Activity Alert!
Ranger-guided Snowshoe Walks in Grand Teton
Are you curious about winter ecology or snow science? Would you like to experience the park in winter? A snowshoe walk with a park naturalist is the perfect way to introduce yourself to winter in the Tetons and to experience travel on traditional snowshoes with hardwood frames and rawhide laces. Rangers offer guided snowshoe hikes from the Craig Thomas Discovery and Visitor Center. Programs began on December 26th and run through mid-March, conditions permitting. A $5 donation is suggested for the rental of snowshoes (provided during the ranger program) but the program is free.
Programs are offered daily at 1:30 p.m. and last two hours, ending at 3:30 p.m. Appropriate winter clothing (e.g. hat, gloves, snow/wind pants, boots, etc.) is suggested, and don't forget your sunscreen and sunglasses!
Reservations are required, call (307) 739-3399 for more details and to make reservations.
Join a ranger for an educational and fun hike through the snow!
|Applications Due in March| Calling all 16-19 year-olds! Spend your summer learning about and making significant improvements to the resources of Grand Teton National Park. Applications for the 2012 Youth Conservation Program are available and due March 16th. Don't miss this opportunity for an unforgettable summer--read more about the program and download an application on the YCP page of the GTNP website!
In the Spotlight
Born and bred in Wyoming, Brad Call is no stranger to inspiring landscapes and world-class recreation. This high-energy owner of Maverik convenience stores not only carries on the family business but has taken the company in a new direction that combines today's on-the-go lifestyle with values that were important when the first store opened in Afton, Wyoming, in 1928.
Maverik came on board as an early corporate supporter, expanding the Foundation's message regionally and providing much needed funding for programming and improvements in Grand Teton. "This area is part of our family heritage as all three generations of Maverik leaders have grown up at the foot of the Tetons," Brad says. "It's important to all of us to preserve the park now and for our children."
A commitment to community and a love of outdoor adventure are guiding principles at the core of the brand. Brad has created a compelling approach to selling Maverik's products--items we need to get us out into the great outdoors--that's never existed in the convenience sector before. Newer stores feature kayakers dropping down fountain falls and snowboarders emerging out of walls to encourage customers to get outside and play. "The culture we create is unique to us and carries the family tradition as well as the flavor of the West," Brad says. Protecting the beautiful landscapes that have been the Call family's backdrop for many generations continues to be one of Brad's top priorities as he believes we have to be responsible stewards of our environment.
Exploring both home and abroad is as essential to Brad as the air he breathes, and he continues to find innovative ways to share his passion. Maverik Adventure Vacations highlights top things to see and do in the seven states where the company operates. Brad also broadcasts weekly on Salt Lake City's KSL Travel Show. The program offers useful tips that he and his longtime friend, Doug Wren, have learned from their many years on the road. What does this globe trotter never leave home without? His wife, his orange Nerf football that he has thrown in every corner of the world, and a driving desire to keep moving and looking for the next great experience.
On behalf of the Foundation and park enthusiasts nationwide,
thank you, Maverik, for all you do!
Discover Grand Teton Online!
The Foundation is proud to have funded a new educational website: Discover Grand Teton.
This exciting, up-to-the-minute resource complements the park's existing website by highlighting the park's history, geology, ecostystems, flora and fauna, as well as the Junior Ranger program--a fantastic reference for the entire family.
location: 25 S. Willow, Suite 10, Jackson, WY 83001
mailing address: P.O. Box 249, Moose, WY 83012
tel: 307-732-0629 fax: 307-732-0639