Jackson Hole has a long history including neighboring Yellowstone National Park, the first national park in the United States. Read on to learn about its history and other fun tidbits.
The most commonly asked question
Where am I? Grand Teton National Park? Jackson? Jackson Hole? It is so confusing! Let us help you. Jackson Hole is the entire area--it is a valley at the base of the Teton Mountain Range. Within Jackson Hole is the main town - Jackson - as well as Teton Village where the famous Jackson Hole Mountain Resort ski hill likes. The Town of Jackson is famous for it's Town Square that has four elk antler arches large enough for five people to walk under.
Other fun facts
Yellowstone was the world's first national park, created in 1872 - 18 years before Wyoming even became a state.
Grand Teton National Park was created in 1929 and greatly expanded in 1950 thanks to the determined efforts of John D. Rockefeller, who purchased and then donated over 30,000 acres. It is famous for it's Grand Teton Mountain that is alsmost 14,000ft in elevation.
Wyoming's first ski area was the Snow King Ski Area, which opened in Jackson in 1939. You can ride its chairlift to the top in the summer and back down also!
- The National Elk Refuge, located just outside the town of Jackson, is the largest established elk preserve in North America. Up to 7,500 elk winter on the refuge and visitors can enjoy close-up views on daily sleigh rides from December through April.
- 97% of the 2,697,000 acres in Teton County are federally owned or state managed, including Grand Teton National Park, the Bridger-Teton National Forest, and the National Elk Refuge. Only 3% of the land in the Jackson Hole area is privately owned.
- The Bridger-Teton National Forest is the second-largest national forest in the lower 48 states, encompassing 3.4 million acres.
- Jackson, Wyoming, elected the first all-woman city council in 1920 and Wyoming was the first state in the US to grant women the right to vote.
- The world's longest running western Shoot-Out, which began in 1957, is held six nights a week from May to September on the Jackson Town Square.
- The U.S. Voyager II spacecraft, launched in 1977 to explore unknown reaches of the solar system, contains an Ansel Adams photograph of Jackson Hole as part of its artifacts cargo.
- The world's only public auction of elk antlers takes place during Old West Days on the Jackson Town Square on the third Saturday in May each year. The antlers are shed by the elk on the National Elk Refuge and are collected by local Boy Scouts. The majority of the auction proceeds go back to the refuge for habitat improvement projects and to hire seasonal irrigation operators.
Interesting in Jackson Hole today? Take a peek at one of our many webcams to see what the locals see in this very moment. Need help packing for your summer vacation? We have you covered. Let us help you Pack Like an Expert. If you have other questions pop into one of our visitor centers to speak with an expert.