The Wind River Range is a dominant range in the Rockies Mountains. Exceptionally long, wide, high, rugged, and remote, the Winds (as they are known) are little known outside of the hiking and mountaineering communities, but to many they are clearly spectacular mountains. The Wind River Mountains run for 90 miles in a straight line due northwest-southeast in west-central Wyoming. They are only connected to other mountains at their northwest end, and all along their length they rise directly from expansive flatlands. The Continental Divide runs along the entire crest of the range. One of the most striking things about the Winds is their remoteness. No roads cross the range, and in most places the crest is over twenty miles from the nearest trailhead. There are no National Parks or famous landmarks to draw the millions of tourists that go to nearby Yellowstone. Other than a few areas that are popular you are most likely to experience solitude. The closest major towns are Pinedale to the west, Lander and Riverton to the east, and Dubois to the north. Jackson Peak is in the Wind River Range. It is located in between Fremont Peak to the northwest and Indian Pass to the southeast. Jackson Peak is most easily approached from Indian Basin starting from Elkhart Park trailhead. It happens to be the 7th highest mountain in the Wind Rivers. The mountain is named after David Jackson, who was one of the first trappers in the area. He is also the one whom Jackson Hole, Wyoming is named after. It is a great peak that has a standard class 2 route up its southeast ridge. There are some moderate climbing routes up its south face and several ice climbs on its north face.
Located in Wyoming's Wind River Range Use the south approach from Pinedale, drive US Highway 191 southbound from Jackson, Wyoming to Pinedale. From Rock Springs, Wyoming on Interstate 80, drive northbound on Highway 191 to Pinedale. At the east end of Pinedale where Highway 191 bears south, (turn at Faler's General Store) proceed east then immediately north on Fremont Lake Road, which soon becomes Forest Road 101. Continue 14.3 miles to a large parking area and the trailhead for the Pole Creek Trail, just beyond the Elkhart Park Ranger Station.
Even though Jackson Peak and the approach trails are within the Bridger Wilderness, no wilderness permit is required. There is a sign-in log at Elkhart Park.
When To Climb
The best time of year to climb Jackson Peak is June through September, with optimal conditions occurring in July and August.
Wilderness (leave-no-trace) camping is permitted within the Bridger Wildernesses.
For current conditions contact the Pinedale Ranger District, Bridger-Teton National Forest, PO Box 220, 29 E. Fremont Lake Road, Pinedale, WY 92941, 307-367-4326.
Pinedale Wyoming web page for Weather, Local events, business and lodging information.
National Weather Service Forecast for Pinedale, WY