Just in time for Christmas, United gave Washington, D.C.-area residents the present of nonstop flights to Jackson Hole, ranked #1 Ski Resort in North America for 2015, the fourth straight year, by “Forbes” Magazine.
United’s Dulles Airport-Jackson Hole, Wyoming nonstop service operates daily Dec. 20 through Dec. 31, and also on Jan. 3, 2015. The service will resume on Feb. 21, and operate on Saturdays only through March 21, a United spokeswoman said.
At a Jackson Hole event recently in Washington’s ENO Wine Bar, Wyoming Senator John Barrasso told guests, “The only way you used to be able to get to Jackson Hole nonstop was to be the Vice President.”
Sen. Barrasso, hours earlier re-elected chairman of the Senate Republican Policy Committee, added, “There’s no place in the world like it. Everyone’s cheerful, optimistic, and attractive.” Obviously, he was referring not to the U.S. Congress, but to Jackson Hole.
So, no wonder that Jackson Hole Mountain Resort (JHMR) was also voted the #1 Overall Resort in North America for 2014, as well as in four individual categories: Overall Satisfaction, Character, Variety, and Challenge, by “SKI” Magazine readers.
Another gift: Jackson Hole Resort Lodging (JHRL) is launching a Kids Ski Free program that applies to condominium or home rental for four nights or more from Jan. 5-April 5, 2015. For each paying adult, kids 14 and under ski for free. Also, reserve the stay with JHRL, and get a 10 percent discount off your lodging.
But you don’t ski, you say? Ahh, Jackson Hole has so much more: the arts, the wildlife, dog sledding, sleigh riding, snowshoeing…
To see “Why Art Thrives in Jackson Hole”, watch this video.
For western art, Wyoming’s Jackson Hole is widely deemed second only to New Mexico’s Santa Fe.
- The Wyoming spot has the National Museum of Wildlife Art, ranging from contemporary to works dating back to 2500 B.C. The permanent collection is particularly strong in 19th and 20th century U.S. art depicting European exploration of the American West.
- Jackson Hole’s many galleries specializing in Western art include trio Fine Art, with works by contemporary painters like Kathryn Mapes Turner, and Legacy Gallery, with works contemporary as well as 19th and 20th century artists such as Frederic Remington and Charles M. Russell. Legacy has branches also in Bozeman, Montana and Scottsdale, Arizona.
- The Wort Hotel, voted the Best Small Historic Hotel 2013-2014 by Historic Hotels of America, is like a gallery of western art, with its million dollar collection. One of its 75 rooms is dedicated to John Ford Clymer, artist and illustrator of America’s frontier. He created more than 80 covers for the “The Saturday Evening Post”. It’s been a local landmark since 1941, when John and Jess Wort carried out their father’s dream of opening Jackson Hole’s first luxury hotel.
- Hotel Terra is filled with works by local and regional artists who have distinct, contemporary western styles. Its lobby features striking photographs by Nine Francois, a Texan, plus colorful horse paintings, and a brass moose sculpture at the front desk. Forbes’ The Top Ten Ski Resorts article noted “The Place to Stay: Hotel Terra—the first LEED hotel at Jackson, is in a plum spot, a two-minute walk from the tram.”
- Hotel Jackson, due to open in January, has Native American decor in the library and hallways. The original Hotel Jackson, one of the first five buildings that made up Jackson Hole in the early 1900s, is now home to the Legacy Gallery.
- The town’s Center for the Arts has both a Performing Arts Pavilion and an Arts & Education Pavilion. It’s presenting the U.S. premiere of “Addicted to Life”, with filmmaker Thierry Donard on Dec. 27. And on Jan. 15, the Met comes to the mountain, with The Metropolitan Opera: Live in HD “Die Miestersinger von Nürnberg” by Richard Wagner. It’s part of the Grand Teton Music Festival.
In addition to the arts, Jackson Hole is also a perfect place to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the 1964 Wilderness Act. “In wildness is the preservation of the world,” as Henry David Thoreau wrote.
Dubbed “The American Serengeti”, Jackson Hole is located at the base of the majestic Teton Mountains within Grand Teton National Park, and only a short drive to Yellowstone, the nation’s first National Park, established in 1872. Old Faithful is just one of the “world’s largest collection of geysers” at Yellowstone, notes the National Park Service.
Also nearby is the National Elk Refuge, tour-able by sleigh rides. The Teton Raptor Center has eagles, kestrels, hawks, gyrfalcons, and Owly, a female great-horned owl, rescued while feeding on a highway.
“One cannot be pessimistic about the West. This is the native home of hope,” as Wallace Stegner, “dean of Western writers”, said in “The Sound of Mountain Water”.
For more info: United Airlines, www.united.com. United was named 2014 Airline of the Year by “Global Traveler”. Jackson Hole Mountain Resort (JHMR), www.jacksonhole.com, 1-888-DEEP-SNO (1-888-333-7766). Jackson Hole Resort Lodging (JHRL), www.jhrl.com, 800-443-8613.