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   February eNewsletter Features
(Click hyperlinks below to be taken to a specific article)

Let the Good Times Roll: Participants in last year's Pura Vida youth program share their experiences through video footage, photos and song!   

Wildlife Whereabouts: Current activities of Grand Teton's intriguing inhabitants

Spring Break in the Park! Grand Teton prepares to welcome NPS Academy students for the program's second spring break session  

Applications Due in March: 2012 Youth Conservation Program, Grand Teton's trail crew 

In The Spotlight: Skinny Skis, one of Jackson's premier outdoor shops 

Discover Grand Teton Online: A dynamic, new website focused on Grand Teton   



After two successful years, Pura Vida (PV) will return in 2012 to continue building a bridge between Jackson's Latino middle and high school students and Grand Teton National Park through a series of bilingual activities that highlight park resources.  


During one spring break session and two summer sessions, PV participants gain experience in teamwork, stewardship, and wilderness recreation. Sessions incorporate natural and cultural history as well as journaling and photography to encourage students to document their impressions.  The following video is a compilation of footage shot by last year's Pura Vida participants.  A big thank you to Vanessa Torres, the youth, diversity, and outreach coordinator at Grand Teton for putting it all together in a fantastic documentary of last summer's program!


Pura Vida Leadership Program 2011
Read more about Pura Vida and other Foundation-funded youth programs on our website!

Wildlife Whereabouts 
Stay up-to-date on wildlife behavior in Grand Teton with our monthly briefings!


The Snake River makes Grand Teton's landscape unlike any other in the entire world.  We have a mix of mountainous terrain, forests, meadows, sagebrush and wetlands all in one place, providing habitat for an incredible array of species!   

  • 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 she breaks trail through the snow. Moose also use their highly developed sense of smell to find only the most nutritious parts of shrubs under the snow.
    Photo credit: Taylor Glenn
  • Hibernating animals, such as black and grizzly bears, benefit from deepening snows, which provide better insulation.
  • Wolves travel in single file lines through deep snow for efficiency.  The estimated wolf population in Grand Teton is up to 62; the number has been as high as 75 in the past.  4 of the 6 wolf packs in the park are verified to have had pups in 2011
  • Bison use their massive heads, thick skin, and muscular necks to move snow from 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. 
Local photographer Taylor Glenn took the photo above of a moose sparring match beneath the Tetons.  Incredible! Visit Taylor's website to see more of his work: http://www.taylorglennphoto.com/
Send us your photos of wildlife in Grand Teton so we can share them with others on Facebook, Twitter and in these monthly eNewsletters!     

Learn about the Foundation-funded Wildlife and Natural Resource Initiative and the crucial research of wolves, black and grizzly bears, and cougars it enables. 

Spring Break in the Park!   

We look forward to welcoming this year's group of NPS Academy students to Grand Teton in early March for the spring break segment of the program!

NPS Academy is an exciting new career preparatio2011 NPS Academy studentsn program that has established Grand Teton as a forerunner in the drive for youth engagement in the NPS.  The program serves as a model for national parks across the country and has been adopted by Great Smoky Mountains National Park since its launch in Grand Teton in March 2011. In the upcoming 2012 session, NPS Academy will bring diverse college students into the park for a one-week alternative spring break experience. After successful completion of the spring break program, qualified students will be placed into 12-week summer internships in national parks across the country, including Grand Teton, where mentors will help the students explore potential NPS jobs and careers in conservation.


If you are visiting the park between March 2nd and March 10th, be on the lookout for a group of young, bright, students.  We are thrilled to share our passion for Grand Teton with tomorrow's leaders while providing them with a one-of-a-kind spring break experience! 

YCPApplications 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 here 

  Spotlight  In the Spotlight   


When Phil Leeds joined Jeff Crabtree in selling performance nordic equipment in Jackson Hole, no one knew Skinny Skis would become one of the longest standing retailers in the valley. This Jackson mainstay outfits locals and visitors with the gear they need for the park and beyond, but do you know this progressive shop also supports avalanche awareness, local ski teams, wildlife, and the Foundation's Youth Conservation Program, a summer teen trail crew? With the help of partners like Skinny Skis, YCP makes park trails safe and enjoyable, and the crew's budding young adults learn why it's important to care about places like Grand Teton.  


The business opened in 1974, and after all these years, Phil and Jeff continue to do their part to keep Jackson Hole vibrant and strong. Skinny Skis is one of many important components of the ever-growing and diverse Jackson Hole community, and for these successful businessmen, staying involved--whether with sports events, environmental activism, or youth--is a way to better the community and advance effective, positive programs that are happening here.  


Protecting and teaching about wild places is absolutely essential. For Phil, Jackson Hole offers a unique combination of open spaces, protected lands, people with an affinity for nature and, most important, a sensitive community that cares. "It's our responsibility, as stewards, to protect and educate our current generation as well as our kids and grandchildren. What an opportunity; what a legacy."

Owners Phil Leeds and Jeff Crabtree

What's it like to own a business that's focused on outstanding recreation in Jackson Hole? How have things changed? "Time flies--35 years for me--when you're having fun," Phil says.  "I still enjoy coming to work and providing the best gear and clothing to outdoor enthusiasts, worldwide. Expanding beyond nordic skiing was a natural progression as the partners are avid runners, hikers, backpackers and climbers. Some of their early product lines are now heavyweights in the industry. Marmot and Gregory packs were relatively unknown in the late 70s, and Black Diamond and Patagonia were quite new, too. "Here at the shop, we are ambassadors for Jackson Hole and that's an important cog in the visitor experience."


Thank you for providing unforgettable experiences for youth in Grand Teton National Park and for keeping Jackson active, stylish, and warm!



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.   

Donate now


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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

e-mail: director@gtnpf.org  


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