Thursday, December 6, 2007

GRAND TARGHEE - DEEP POWDER AND BIG TIME TERRAIN

Your satisfaction is guaranteed at Grand Targhee. It’s a pretty safe bet for management, especially with the way the season is going so far.

During Thanksgiving week Grand Targhee opened 1,500 acres of skiable terrain, more than any other resort in the Rockies, including Utah and Colorado. Tickets were discounted because of the “limited” terrain, but their unconditional snow guarantee applied. If not happy within an hour, you could trade your ticket in for a pass to be used on another day. There were no takers.

It’s not hard to imagine why. More than 500 inches of snow a year falls on Grand Targhee. And you can bet it’s light, dry champagne so often dreamed about but never indulged enough by most of us, except the Targhee locals.

With such abundant powder, national ski magazines rate Targhee among the top resorts in the West for snow quality and quantity-- less than 5% water content, and you know what that means.

Inside scoop:
Deep powder and big time terrain are the main attractions here. For the best of both, book a SnowCat Adventure on Peaked Mountain—a huge powder reserve of 1,000 untracked acres accessible only by snowcat. Until December 21, you can get a screaming on a SnowCat Adventure Package with lodging.

Two peaks at Targhee total more than 3,000 acres of terrain. The snowcats get 1,000 of them all to themselves on Peaked Mountain, where you can rack up 20,000 feet of exclusive vertical in 10 to 12 epic runs. The huge powder reserve is better than ever this season, with ten new trails off the top, plus new glades through old growth Douglas Fir and White Bark Pine. The spectacular views of the Tetons from the southeast ridge-line will blow you away.

There’s powder everywhere at Targhee. On Fred’s Mountain, only 400 of 1.500 acres are groomed. Black diamonds take 70 percent of the terrain. But there’s something for everyone. There is a beginner's powder area and hundreds of acres of wide-open slopes for intermediates and other cruisers.

More Targhee Treats:
Three terrain parks include Middle Earth, a new ‘natural’ terrain park with a rolling landscape that changes with every snowfall. As snow accumulates, long gliding slopes become rolling moguls that flow into a ‘fish bowl’, then split into three different levels draining into the ‘Water Fall’ natural half pipe, and end at the Power Reserve Traverse.

Here are a few of the other treats at Targhee: You can ride a sleigh on a starlit evening to a roundtable dinner in a snow-buried yurt; your kids can enroll in the Powder Scouts program, which gives kids ages 6 to 12 a full day of instruction, food, and skiing; and a spa offers everything from massage to a mineral mud wrap, along with hot tubs, sauna, exercise room, and heated outdoor pool.

The intense adventure at Targhee requires a lot of fuel and you have a lot of dining choices. For a quick bite, grab a snack from Snorkel’s, scarf killer nachos from the Trap Bar & Grille, or load up in the full-service cafeteria. For fine dining, you can’t go wrong at the Targhee Steakhouse. At night, The Trap Bar and Grille jams with bluegrass, rock, reggae and blues.

Lodging options abound:
It’s easy to get to Grand Targhee from the Idaho Falls or Jackson Hole airports. Midweek lodging specials are available at three slopeside lodges. Townhomes and condominiums are available at Teton Creek and Aspen Pointe, less than11 miles from Targhee. Beautiful homes are available at Creekside Meadows near Driggs.

Make no mistake, Grand Targhee is paradise for powderhounds, But if you’re looking for a laid-back, friendly, uncrowded ski resort where you can relax with friends or family, this is your place.

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Eight Things Every Skier and Rider must do at Grand Targhee:

1. Snowcat skiing on peaked Mountain – ten new runs this year, over 1,000 acres

2. Ski or ride the North Boundary accessible off of the Blackfoot chair. It’s a huge powder reserve with untracked POW until at least 1:00 p.m.!

3. Ski or ride in Grand Targhee’s new “natural” Middle Earth Terrain Park

4. Snowboard in “Ladies Waist” a natural half pipe located on the face of the mountain under the Dreamcatcher quad chair. Fun for skiers too!

5. New this season – Cosmic Pizza – Montana’s best pizza is now served at most Grand Targhee food outlets (5 total restaurants)!

6. Nordic skiing in Rick’s Basin. It’s the most beautiful terrain and offers incredible views of Teton Valley – all 15k of it. Great for the novice but also offers challenging terrain for the tougher track skiers.

7. Hiking up to Mary’s for fresh tracks long after the lift served terrain is tracked out – the gates leading to Mary’s are open about 90% of the time. Only avalanche work closes these gates to paradise!

8. Skiing or riding in the “The Good” - “The Bad” and “The Ugly.” The fall line can’t be beat - for advanced intermediate and expert snow sliders.

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