The Southern Valley Trails Project is moving forward with great momentum. We have been getting a lot of questions regarding this project and winter grooming. Here are some answers. Feel free to contact us if you would like more information.
What is getting groomed this winter?
We plan to groom the Lady Slipper Trail from Pole Canyon to the top of the hill where it connects to Nemo. This is a new trail and has never been groomed before, so be patient with us as we figure it out. We are also planning to groom Nemo, but will not groom all the way to Mike Harris. We will groom it to the BPA Road, so you can do a loop. There is currently a logger removing trees from the Nemo area, so we will wait till they are done before we begin grooming Nemo.
How to best Access these trails?
The Mike Harris parking area is not going to be plowed this winter. We do plan to have it plowed next winter when we have more winter trails ready for use from that trailhead. For this winter, we would like people to access the Southern Valley Trails via the Sherman Springs access, which connects to the middle of the Lady Slipper Trail.
Option 1 – Teton Springs: The quickest access is to park at the Teton Springs winter trailhead, located next to the lodge in Teton Springs. There is a 0.6 mile singletrack trail that connects to the forest Service access gate at Sherman Springs. Dogs are not allowed on this trail in Teton Springs.
Option 2 – Sherman Springs: Park in the plowed parking lot directly East of the entrance to Teton Springs. From here you can travel East, parallel to the 9500 road on the pathway, then turn South and go down the Sherman Springs Access Road till you get to the National Forest.This 1.5 mile access trail is dog friendly, but not groomed. It is snowmobile track packed.
Option 3 – Pole Canyon: Park at Pole Canyon. The road doesn’t get plowed all the way to the Pole Canyon trailhead, so you will have a 0.4 mile approach on snowmobile track packed trail before you get to the West end of Lady Slipper Trail. Dogs are welcome.
What are these trail like?
These are singletrack groomed trails. This means that the trail corridor through the trees is about 6 ft. wide and the groomed trail surface is about 30 in. wide. This type of trail is ideal for people riding fat bikes, or walking with snowshoes. Skiers are welcome to explore the trails, but take note that these trails were not designed for skiing and the narrow corridor creates a challenge when going downhill. Please maintain a safe speed and watch out for other trail users.
Who Is Grooming these trails?
Teton Valley Trails and Pathways and a small fleet of volunteers is taking on the grooming efforts for the Southern Valley singletrack. We give huge thanks to Fitzgerals’s Bicycles and super volunteer Derrick Nobman for their partnership and motivation to keep these trails in great condition. Next winter (2019/2020) Trails and Pathways plans to have a full grooming setup staged at Mike Harris, a plowed parking area, and will be grooming about 7K of Nordic ski trails and additional singletrack trails.
How are we grooming these trails?
Trails and Pathways received two grants this past summer to purchase singletrack grooming equipment. We will be using snowmobiles to pull these implements. By using a tow behind roller, plow or compaction drag, we now have the ability to maintain the trail in most all snow/weather conditions. These trails are a challenge to groom and we appreciate your help by not damaging the trail surface when it is soft.
When do we groom?
We groom the trails when they need attention. The singletrack trails are not on a set grooming schedule, so pay attention to our Grooming Report for the most up to date trail conditions.
What is Yeti’s Loop Trail
This fall the USFS was able to rough in a 5K Winter Nordic ski loop that circumnavigates the Nemo Trail. Trails and Pathways contracted with Morton Trails, a trail design company out of Salt Lake, to help design and lay out this loop. It is unlike any other Nordic trail we have in the valley. There are plenty of hills with some challenging steep sections and it is all in the trees. We will work with the Forest Service to complete construction of this trail next summer so it will be ready for skiing next winter. It is going to be a fun and challenging trail!