GRAND TETON NATIONAL PARK — Temperatures have plummeted in northwestern Wyoming, leading to a glorious dumping of snow in Grand Teton National Park. Buckrail photographer Nick Sulzer caught one of the park’s ursine residents enjoying the fresh powder.
A powerful winter storm passed through Jackson Hole on Wednesday and Thursday, leading to the accumulation of several inches of snow in higher elevations.
Grizzlies are preparing to enter hibernation, rooting around for as many calories as they can find before settling in for the winter months.
During hibernation, both black bears and grizzly bears enter what is called torpor. Bears enter a state of deep sleep in order to conserve energy, allowing them to survive about five months in their dens when food sources are at their scarcest.
The bears will have more snow to work with when a second, weaker storm passes through the area this weekend. Another surge of cold air will arrive on Saturday with this weaker storm, and highs will struggle to get above freezing in the valleys with lows on Saturday night falling into the single digits. These values are well below average for late October, according to Buckrail meteorologist Alan Smith.