It’s a wrap for Intrepid Medical Conferences Medicine in The Mountains 2020 in Grand Targhee, Wyoming. It was a fabulous week. Made so by the attendees. We were drawn by a passion for the outdoors and an opportunity to celebrate this in the magnificent Teton Range together meant that we left as friends.
Mother Nature capitulated and gave us sunny days, light snow days and epic powder days. At least 38 inches of snow fell in the latter half of the conference period. The animals were even out for the snowshoe adventurers. It was a little disconcerting yet amazing to see some feline tracks just under the chair!
Snow, Swag and Sunshine
We arrived just before the start of the conference and sorted some of the swag and logistics for the upcoming days. A short drive to lovely Victor, Idaho to get some wholesome and delicious Kates Real Food Bars. Shame the “Spud Drive Inn” was closed!
Part of our Intrepid Ethos is to provide swag with meaning. For us, that is giving away useful, local and or socially conscious items.
For example, our New Zealand based Suelo lip balms, organic handmade balms made with locally sourced ingredients. As mentioned above Kate’s Real Food bars, healthy real food to keep you going in the mountains. and of course something from the local ski areas where we run the conference.
Our swag goal is that you will want to keep and use it all, and your partner or kids will want it too!
An exploration of the growing base town of Driggs revealed some amazing dining experiences and retailers for any outdoor gear you could need. The town had grown so much since our last visit, but it was still easy to get around and had that welcoming small-town feel that we love.
There were no Moose seen this year on the banks of Teton Creek as we ascended Ski Hill Road but some mule deer were browsing in the deep snow.
Avalanche dog, Otter, is now semi-retired, but still helping us
The Grand Targhee Ski Resort team did a great job and it was fabulous collaborating with them. Joe and Kenny (and Otter the semi-retired Avalanche Dog) were extremely helpful on our first two days learning some mountain and avalanche rescue techniques. Suzanne made sure our delegates were fed and refreshed every day with the delicious breakfasts and afternoon snacks.
One of the patrollers was even kind enough to provide an interview for our 12 year old “official photographer”. Who was also performing brilliantly on her snowboard as an alternative to her routine alpine or nordic skiing.
Inspirational talks from all of the delegates
There were some amazing talks this year from the logistical issues of clinical work in the remote Canadian Arctic to the inspirational first all women’s team conquering the 750miles of Ocean from Port Townsend to Ketchikan in the Race to Alaska ( check out Sistership.com an organisation that encourages women to “Age Proud and Grow Bold” through adventurous activities and support).
We got updates on current prevention of altitude illness in adults and a personal insight into the risk factors, presentation and management of paediatric altitude illness. Sleeping at 2400m at Grand Targhee there may have even been one or two delegates suffering some symptoms?!
The team from Teton Valley Health including Orthopaedic Surgeon Dr “Mo” Brown gave us an insight into some of the local trauma cases and an all-inside ACL reconstruction technique. Many thanks to Mason who was instrumental in co-ordinating Dr Brown’s session. The snow sports trauma quiz was hotly contested and arguably the most memorable teaching point was that there is skiing in Greece.
Time for some relaxation and rejuvenation
The skiing and riding were superb and a couple of clear days allowed for views of the Tetons and some backcountry exploration. A few of the crew left some sweet lines in Steve Baugh Bowl (there is a great article on this backcountry region at www.tetonvalleymagazine.com ). They managed to stay safe and avoid the gnarly cornices. Others were content with some in area hike-to terrain to sample bottomless pow….and some seriously funky wind slab.
The visibility went down as the snow level rose. For us that just meant some epic tree skiing. It was definitely a bit harder going for the nordic skiers and snowshoers though, with the grooming disappearing rapidly. There was always so much to do for all our delegates, families and friends as you can see from our previous article on The Top 11 Things to Do in Grand Targhee
After the skiing and the afternoon conference session, we got to look after our minds and bodies. We were very fortunate to have our very own Boston trained yoga instructor who took us through the most wonderful experience of relaxation and rejuvenation.
And then there’s the food!
We had plenty of energy to hit the hill after early morning lectures with all that great breakfast fare. The breakfast tacos especially hit the spot for most people. Some of us couldn’t go past the cinnamon rolls.
The good food theme extended to the conference dinner at the Branding Iron Grille. Hats off to anyone who could finish all the courses.
A big thank you to all the delegates, their families and friends that joined us! It is always the people that make these events such a success. We look forward to meeting you all again soon.
Join Our Next Medical Conference In the Mountains
2021 in Furano Japan
Our next medical conference, Medicine in the Jungle 2020 is in Sumatra, Indonesia
If you want to be notified when registrations open you can do that here