Grand Teton National Park is closing a backcountry skiing slope as grizzly bears awaken. A portion of the east-facing slope of “25 Short” is now closed until further notice to prevent potential conflict between a denning grizzly bear and skiers.
Direct access across the summit ridgeline to Turkey Chute, Chute the Moon and other routes to Avalanche Canyon remains open.
Bears are beginning to emerge from hibernation. Approximately fifty percent of adult male grizzly bears are awake by mid-March and females with young usually emerge anytime between April and mid-May. Bears will be looking for food, including winter-killed carcasses in avalanche paths and other areas.
Backcountry skiers are encouraged to be alert, aware of the surrounding area, and carry bear spray. Black and grizzly bears may be located anywhere within the park, including developed areas. All park visitors should carry bear spray and maintain a minimum of 100 yards from bears and wolves, and 25 yards from other wildlife. Please report bear sightings within the park to Teton Interagency Dispatch Center at 307-739-3301.
For more information, including a map of the closure areas, please see Alertsand Temporary and Wildlife Closures on the park’s website, www.nps.gov/grte.