slide photo that went viral not from Teton Pass

By Jim Stanford on January 23, 2012

Comments: 21 Comments

Somewhere in Idaho, perhaps, but not Glory Bowl.

The photo of a massive pile of avalanche debris widely circulated this weekend turns out not to have been taken on Teton Pass.

Showing a plow’s width cut through a 20-foot-high wall of snow, the image served as a powerful dissuasion to skiing the backcountry, as well as a commendation to WyDOT staff on a job well done opening the highway.

The image was posted Saturday by Matthias Hans Joachim Richter, a pilot who lives at Devil’s Tower, according to his Facebook profile. He attributed the photo to the pass and advised, “Please be careful out there folks!”

By Sunday morning, the photo was everywhere, as friends shared it on their Facebook pages, inviting discussion and oohs and aahs from their circles. Victor, Idaho, residents were some of the first to share. Among those who reposted it were media figures such as Jackson Hole Radio, Mary Cernicek, Bridger-Teton National Forest spokeswoman, and Teton AT.

A true journalist, Sam Petri wanted to see for himself and perhaps post his own photo on Instagram. Petri phoned friend Tony Birkholz and said, “Let’s go admire this big pile of snow like a couple of rednecks.”

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Posted under Environment, Humor, Media, Sports

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Mitt is, in his words, ‘very conflicted’

By Jim Stanford on December 6, 2011

Comments: 23 Comments

First came the hard-hitting Mitt vs. Mitt video, detailing a litany of for-its before he was against-its. Then Faux News slammed the presumptive GOP nominee for his constant shape shifting. Jon Stewart piled on, floating the idea of an affair, and Colbert rushed to Mitt’s defense.

Now someone else is expounding at length on Mitt Romney’s most detestable character trait: Mitt Romney.

Via the Teton Dems, here’s Mitt prattling on before an elderly audience at the 2004 Republican National Convention. My favorite part comes at about the 3:30 mark, when the camera pans back to reveal a group of women more interested in washing down breakfast with tea than even turning to acknowledge him.

President Obama likely can defeat Romney next year by playing only one clip — Corporations are People, My Friend — over and over, but this will make a nice companion piece.

(All of the clips referenced above can be found on the Teton Dems Facebook page, a good stream for political news and not just rah-rah cheerleading.)

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Posted under Humor, Politics, Republican Party

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eureka! headwaters of Trout Creek discovered

By Jim Stanford on June 10, 2010

Comments: 5 Comments

The Snake River pours through a fence into a channel developer Dick Edgcomb renamed "Trout Creek." Click to enlarge.

Tuesday likely saw the peak of the Snake River this year, with a flow in the canyon of 24,000 cubic feet per second. A group of guides launched at Pritchard Creek for a 16-mile whitewater run, and along the way we came across a natural spectacle long shrouded in mystery: the source of “Trout Creek.”

It wasn’t exactly the hunt for the origin of the Blue Nile. We didn’t have to bushwhack miles up a steep canyon, or wade through a marsh. No, the gushing source of “Trout Creek” was … none other than the Snake River itself.

For those who weren’t around in 2002 or don’t remember the controversy, developer Dick Edgcomb renamed portions of the Snake River so he could shoehorn a golf course and 68 home sites between the steep hillsides of the canyon and the meandering, braided channels of the river. County regulations prohibit building within 150 feet of the Snake, so Edgcomb hired consultants who created the mythical “Trout Creek.” The Teton County planning department (and commissioners) bought the bogus designation, paving the way for construction of Canyon Club, later renamed Snake River Sporting Club.

It was one thing for the Jackson Hole News to unearth aerial photos showing river water streaming through those channels; it was another for me to witness it Tuesday firsthand. The volume of water was striking, just about knocking out a fence developers erected around the property. All of the “Trout Creek” channels were taking water, enough to navigate a small boat. Had I a kayak and wire cutters, I would have notched the first descent.

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Posted under County Government, Environment, Politics

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loosey-goosey times

By Jim Stanford on February 11, 2009

Comments: 4 Comments

As long as turmoil continues to sink the Yankees, we are happy.

As long as turmoil continues to sink the Yankees, we are happy.

I watched a clip Monday of Alex Rodriguez‘s interview in which he admitted steroid use and apologized to his fans.

My first thought: Fans?

Then this morning I read Doug Glanville‘s column in the N.Y. Times, in which Glanville, a retired major leaguer, humanized his former teammate, arguing that the test leak was a breach of trust that ought to outrage all of us. (Uh, huh.)

Any sympathy this might have engendered evaporated, however, when in a second clip the beefed-up ballplayer continually referred to the reporter who broke the story, Selena Roberts of Sports Illustrated, as “this lady” and accused her of stalking him, among other lies.

A-Roid will always be a money-sucking prima donna who can’t hit in the clutch, and now will have an asterisk next to his name for the rest of his career and into the record books.

But he did get one thing right in explaining away his steroid use: It sure was part of the “loosey-goosey” culture of the times.

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Posted under Economy, Sports

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an utter jackass, and hell to pay

By Jim Stanford on June 10, 2008

Comments: 4 Comments

Bush delivers another worthless speech before one of his Orwellian backdrops in November 2005. White House photo/David Morse

I know Bush bashing has become somewhat passé, but try as we may to look toward the future, it’s hard to get past the crimes and ineptitude of this administration and the fact that we’re apparently letting them get away with it.

What set me off recently — besides the admission by former White House flack Scott McClellan that the case for war with Iraq was exaggerated, and the Senate Intelligence Committee report that confirmed that confession — was this excerpt from a new book by retired Lt. General Ricardo Sanchez, the former U.S. commander in Iraq.

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Posted under Politics

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