December 26, 1969 :
Grand Targhee Resort opens with Bannock + Shoshone lifts, Targhee Lodge, and day lodge.
Our history truly tells a story and gives us deep roots in the Tetons. Generations of families have grown up skiing and riding on the west side of the Tetons, long before Grand Targhee was even on the map. This love of winter snow sports was the catalyst for developing lift-served skiing and the passion lives on today.
History shows us where we have been and points us in the direction of where we are going.
The original inhabitants of this part of the country were the Shoshone, Bannock, Blackfoot and Nez Perce Native American tribes. The Grand Teton Mountains were called the Tee-Win-At by the Shoshone Indians, meaning "high pinnacles".
Targhee was a local chief about whom there is little known other than he maintained peace between white men and his tribesmen. Chief Targhee was apparently slain; after his death the young warriors prevailed in leading the tribe into war. Grand Targhee Resort's name includes both a reference to Grand Teton Mountain and Chief Targhee. A National Forest, a mountain pass, a creek and our ski and summer resort commemorate Chief Targhee's integrity and the memory of the Native American contribution to this country.
The local folks of Teton Valley were instrumental in establishing Grand Targhee Resort. In 1966 Grand Targhee, Inc. was formed by east Idahoans. The resort opened on December 26, 1969 and was officially dedicated by then Governor Samuelson on February 2, 1970.
Bill Robinson, a plastics manufacturer from Cincinnati, Ohio, purchased Grand Targhee in 1975. Robinson was smitten with this area from the onset. Though primarily an absentee owner, Bill and his family loved the area, bought a home in Driggs, and visited frequently throughout the years.
In 1987 Grand Targhee Resort was purchased and operated by Mory and Carol Bergmeyer. The Bergmeyers improved the resort facilities, added new guest activities and expanded the reputation of Targhee while continuing its dedication to family, quality and the sensitive balance between people and the great outdoors.
Booth Creek Ski Holdings, Inc., a corporation run by CEO George Gillett, Jr., purchased Grand Targhee in March 1997. In June 2000, George and Rose Gillett, along with their four sons, purchased Grand Targhee from Booth Creek Ski Holdings.
In 1997, the Gilletts installed the first high-speed detachable quad chair by replacing Bannock with Dreamcatcher, and the Shoshone double chair was replaced with a fixed-grip quad. Through a land exchange in 2004, the Gilletts acquired ownership of Grand Targhee's base area. Planning has begun for the future development of Grand Targhee Resort including expansion of Peaked Mountain facilities and a proposed expanded base area with more lodging units. For more history, scroll across the timeline at the top of the page.
Rendezvous Lodge, lift parts and snow!
Check out the cool cars in the background.
Local skiers and founding fathers all enjoying
Targhee's slopes on July 4, 1970.
Teton Valley News announces Grand Targhee's grand opening - December 1969
Our original ski poster with the famous Steve Baugh Bowl in the background.
A sample of Grand Targhee's posters tells a consistent story of incredible snow, sun, crystal blue skies, majestic mountain scenery that inspires and delights.