Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Tetons - Climbers Ranch

After just 30-hours straight in Zampini's little red Mazda III, we're here in Jackson, Wyoming.  Two summers ago, after summitting a prominent peak in the Teton range, I resolved that I must return to the Tetons to mountaineer these beautiful peaks for the month of June.  This was just after hearing about a climber's ranch located at the base of the mountains just south of Jenny Lake.  (This photo was taken that afternoon - June 10, 2007).  I heard you can volunteer your labor during "work week" and stay the rest of the month free.  Probably too good to be true, but I thought I'd check into it further.  That was two years ago.

We arrived tonight!  This stunning establishment commonly (and formally) known as "The Climbers Ranch" will be our home for the month of June.    The common denominator among the community here is obvious--passion for mountains.  This year a vibrant guy named John is running the ranch.  He said if I work 6 days during the month to help out at the ranch, he will allow me (and my long list of guests) to stay free.  
Are you kidding me?  Bargain!  This place is gorgeous.  I'm just wondering how they've kept this place such a secret.  The cabins are old wood with famous climber's stories creeking out of every floor board.  Zampini and I have our own cabin, and it's right at the base of Grand, a 13,770 ft mountain.  Austin will join us 5 days next week.  After that my older brother and sister will arrive to make the climb up Grand.  There's a story surrounding that week that I will elaborate on in future posts.  Grand is a narly looking peak, and today dustings of snow were falling on it while the summer showers swept over us down in the valley.

"Daybreak" - Moonset over Mt. Moran at Oxbox Bend - August, 2005

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