No Nachos: Signal Mountain Lodge scales back operations along Jackson Lake

JACKSON, Wyo. – Signal Mountain Lodge, a popular park stop along Jackson Lake, will open in a limited capacity for the 2020 summer season, joining other concessioners in nearby national parks finding it impossible to operate under NPS restrictions in place for COVID-19.

Due to concerns and guidance being provided by the National Park Service as well as the local health and community advisers surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, Forever Resorts, operators of Signal Mountain Lodge in Grand Teton NP, say they have been forced to make significant adjustments for the 2020 season.

Nachos have been a big draw for Trapper Grill. Photo: Courtesy Signal Mountain Lodge

That means no signature nachos at the Trapper Grill, which will close for 2020, as will Leeks Pizzeria. Grab-and-go and grocery options in the general store will still be available. Business hours will be limited at the general store and at Needles and Timbers Gift Shops, which will be open. Tentative schedule for these retail operations is June 5 – October 18.

“This has been a tremendously difficult decision, but in the end is what we feel is responsible and enables us to provide for the health and safety of our staff and guests,” Forever Resorts stated.

Lodging at Forever Resorts facilities will be extremely limited at the only resort in Grand Teton located on the shores of Jackson Lake. Only Lakefront Retreat, Premier Western, Bungalow and Home-Away-From Home units will be available during the 2020 season at this time. Most of these units have cooking capabilities which will allow for the safest options in providing for social distancing. This lodging will be open June 5 – October 17.

“Operating seasonally in a national park, we hire nearly 200 employees from around the country and world,” stated Forever Resorts. “This staff is provided housing in a communal setting which creates challenges in providing for social distancing guidance. To ensure we can provide a safe environment for our staff we have made the difficult decision of significantly limiting the number of staff we accept into our staff housing. By limiting our staff, we have been forced to adjust our normal operations.”

Campgrounds are expected to open and functional normally. Signal Mountain Campground will be open June 5 – October 17 and Lizard Creek Campground will run June 12 – September 7.

Plans are to continue to offer first come, first served camping with electric hookups, public showers and laundromat facilities at the Signal Mountain location.

Marinas will also operate on a fairly normal basis. Leeks Marina will operate as normal with the usual wrangle boat, fuel and pump out services. Signal Mountain Marina will have only buoy rentals including wrangle boat and fueling services. Kayak rentals may be available on a limited basis. Motorized boat rentals will not be available in 2020.

No decision has yet been made on guided lake fishing and scenic float trip operations.

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