PPP registration deadline today

By Jim Stanford on March 24, 2014

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Conditions could be good for the annual rite of spring.

Competitors and fun-class partiers wishing to participate in the 39th annual Pole Pedal Paddle must sign up today to avoid a $15 late fee.

Register online or at the ski club office upstairs in Snow King Center.

The race will feature a top-to-bottom super-G at Jackson Hole Mountain Resort, 8-k Nordic ski at Shooting Star, 20-mile cycle to the Snake River and 10-mile paddle to the finish at Astoria Hot Springs.

As the News&Guide reported Friday, the bike leg will be split slightly to accommodate the Nordic course layout, with racers pedaling about a mile to begin skate skiing.

The forecast for Saturday is calling for sunshine and a high of 44 degrees.

Participants may compete solo or with a team, in racing or recreation classes. Fun class is judged not on time but by who appears to be having the most fun. It’s not uncommon to have chiseled Olympians racing alongside costumed beer guzzlers.

Cash prizes of up to $500 will be awarded to the top three finishers in racing class (individuals and teams), with gift certificates for rec class. Raffle prizes include a kayak from Rendezvous River Sports and 2014-15 JHMR season pass.

Entry fees are $60 per individual or $45 per team member. Fun class is $80 per team, and family teams are $70.

After the race, awards will be given at Teton Village, and Michael Franti and Spearhead will perform a free concert as part of the Jackson Hole Rendezvous.

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Mountain Fest satisfies, in the end

By Jim Stanford on April 2, 2013

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Guitarist John McCauley, center, leads Deer Tick at the Pink Garter on Sunday with guitarist Ian O’Neil and bassist Chris Ryan. The empty space in the middle is where the drummer would have been; his absence was unexplained.

On a day when pro triathlete Adam Wirth of Boise captured the PPP crown, a huge crowd gathered at Teton Village to celebrate spring’s arrival during the Jackson Hole Mountain Festival.

Perhaps as many as 4,000 people turned out Saturday for the PPP awards party, music by Lazy Eyes beneath the tram and the featured concert by Black Mother Jones and O.A.R. Parked cars lined the village entrance road all the way to Highway 390, in what may have been the largest turnout yet for the festival.

While the selection of the headliner generated strong opinions, one thing everyone could agree on was fine weather and free music make for a great party. Tailgates with generous spreads of food and beverages could be found from the PPP finish line at Astoria to the village parking lots. Most of the buzz around O.A.R. was whether rock star Dave Matthews — staying at Teton Village on vacation, skiing and snowmobiling — would join them onstage. (He did not.)

The diehard music fans pushed the festival into the wee hours of Sunday night, when the Providence, R.I., rock group Deer Tick played the Pink Garter.

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cold not a record; PPP nordic leg on

By Jim Stanford on March 25, 2013

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Temperature at the airport.

Today’s chilly morning, with a temperature of -8 degrees at Jackson Hole Airport, made for lots of annoying “I’m glad I’m on spring break” Facebook posts, but it was not a record, according to meteorologist Jim Woodmencey.

The record for March 25 in Jackson is -27 degrees, set in 1965, he said.

The meteorologist noted colder temperatures in Bondurant (-18) and at Yellowstone Lake (-19) this morning. The lows may have been even a few degrees colder before dawn, he said.

The recent blast of winter has ensured that there will be a nordic leg for the 38th annual Pole Pedal Paddle on Saturday. The Jackson Hole Ski Club will set a course at the base of the mountain by the Teewinot and/or Eagle’s Rest lifts.

Today is the deadline to register for the PPP without paying an additional $15 registration fee. Sign up to participate individually or with a team here.

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O.A.R. to play Mountain Fest

By Jim Stanford on December 4, 2012

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O.A.R. will play a free concert March 30 in Teton Village, following PPP.

Looking ahead to spring, Jackson Hole Mountain Resort already has booked the popular rock band O.A.R. to headline its Mountain Festival on March 30.

The free concert is the centerpiece of a weekend that features the 38th annual Pole Pedal Paddle race, Coombs Classic and other music and events. Lodging and lift ticket specials are available.

O.A.R., for Of A Revolution, rose to prominence playing the college circuit and through word of mouth. Like the Dave Matthews Band, to which it is often compared, the group went on to achieve mainstream success, selling out Madison Square Garden in 2006.

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Morton repeats as PPP champ

By Jim Stanford on April 1, 2012

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Out of hibernation: Zen Deathriders, sporting bear hides, won the fun class.

Whether skiing, biking, paddling or skating for the Jackson Hole Moose hockey team, Spencer Morton can do it all.

Morton retained his title as the best all-around athlete in Jackson Hole yesterday by winning the racing class of the 37th annual Pole Pedal Paddle.

Spencer Morton

On a day that began with pouring rain and ended with brilliant sunshine at Astoria Hot Springs, Morton survived a grueling nordic leg and edged triathlete Adam Wirth of Boise, Idaho, and Dave Bergart of Victor. Morton’s total time for the 4,139-vertical-foot downhill, 10-k cross-country ski, 20-mile bike and 10-mile paddle was 2 hours, 22 minutes and 49 seconds.

Katie Engelman won the women’s racing class by one minute over Kathleen Crowley, finishing in 2:41:21. Peter Neal, 14, won the men’s recreational class. Complete results are posted here.

Afterward, competitors enjoyed music in the sun at Teton Village by Jackson bands Lazy Eyes and Elk Attack, followed by Mountain Fest headliner G. Love and Special Sauce. It was a perfect ending to one of the biggest PPPs in recent history.

For more on the event, see Monday’s Daily and Wednesday’s News&Guide.

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