This is Day 2 of my Adventures by Disney – Wyoming, Quest for the West trip report for the adventure we took July 19-25, 2023. Our traveling family was Doobie, 52, Rebekah, 50 and Gideon, 14. If you missed prior installments, click here for the list.
Day Two – Jackson, Wyoming
Day two, the first full day of our Adventures by Disney – Wyoming, started with me waking up before the rest of my family and venturing out just before 7 a.m.. I first checked out the gym in the basement of the Wort Hotel. I did a bit of lifting and looked at the hot tub I hoped to visit at some point (Spoiler: I did not).
Jackson is a very peaceful, quiet, serene city at 7 in the morning. I walked a mile or two just looking at the buildings and mountains and city decor before heading back to the hotel to get ready for breakfast. It was going to be a big day!
Breakfast at the Wort Hotel
Breakfast on morning #1 was at the restaurant in the hotel. We went in, told them we were with the Adventures by Disney Group, and ordered what we wanted. The food was excellent with Rebekah particularly loving her bagels and lox.
White Water Rafting Preparation
Then it was time to get ready for white water rafting. Rebekah had done it before but this was a first for me and Gideon and we were nervous. We'd be dealing with class 1 and 2 rapids with a lot of calm waters in-between. We all wore our swim gear which meant a wetsuit for Gideon. We were worried he might be too warm in it, because it was a very warm day, but as you’ll find out, it was the right move.
One of our guides, Kacey, could sense that many of us were getting very nervous about what we were getting into, and she did a great job calming us. She made sure we knew that class 2 rapids are not major, that there would be lots and lots of calm waters in between the rapids and that in all of her years of giving tours on the Snake River, she’d only had one person fall out (and was obviously okay). Her advice helped a lot!
To get to the rafting, we first boarded a bus that took us a very short distance to Jackson Hole Whitewater. There, we donned our optional helmets and received instructions. There were also included wetsuits and swim booties available here for anyone that wanted them. Then, we boarded a bus, along with other non-ABD guests, for the hour drive to the Snake River. But there was no time for boredom on the trip as the views were always beautiful, including great angles of the river.
White Water Rafting
Once we arrived, we were given our life jackets and oars and boarded the rafts. Our ABD group was split into two. We did not share rafts with non-ABD guests. There were two types of rafts: smaller ones where you have to sit on the side and larger ones that have a bench across the middle. Happily, we got a larger one.
White water rafting was awesome! Everyone took turns sitting in different parts of the raft. The braver among us (Gideon, not me) also had the chance to sit on the front of the raft. During the calmer parts we were encouraged to jump into the river if we wanted to and I’d say about 50% of us did (again, Gideon, not me). It’s a good thing he opted for the wetsuit, because even with it on he was freezing.
Somehow Rebekah and I ended up in the front during the roughest rapid we faced. The water was cold but the experience was great. White water rafting turned out to not be scary at all and much more fun than I anticipated. (For those who didn’t want to do white water rafting, a gentle float trip on the Snake River was also available).
Rebekah brought her phone with her in a waterproof case. I opted to leave mine on the bus because I couldn’t chance losing my work-needed phone on day two of the trip. As a result, this was my first opportunity to really appreciate one of the great Adventures by Disney features I wasn’t aware of. Both Adventure Guides have a camera with them at all times and a part of their job is to take hundreds and hundreds of pictures of us and make them all digitally available to us at no additional charge. What a perk!
Snacks and the Back to Jackson
The worst part of the rafting was getting back to the bus. We had to climb a fairly steep dirt incline for about 15 minutes. But the experience was well worth it. As expected, the trip took us past lunch time, so there were the usual snacks available on our bus as well as cheese sticks and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. Yum!
Speaking of snacks … there were always tons and tons of snacks and bottled water available on the bus for grabbing at any time. Beef sticks, Oreo Cakesters, Nutter Butters, Cheeze-Its, trail mix, Rice Krispie Treats, and many more. They also had over the counter painkillers, bug spray, and sunscreen always at the ready.
We got back to the Wort Hotel around 4:30 p.m. and had some more time to walk around Jackson before gathering in the lobby for the evening’s activities. We saw quite a bit of the town we hadn’t previously seen and got our obligatory picture in front of the antlers.
Then it was back to the hotel to meet up for the evening’s activities. We’d be walking over to the Jackson Hole Playhouse for dinner and a movie. But first … a group trip to the town square where the guides took a group picture as well as individual family pictures in front of the antlers.
Dinner at The Jackson Hole Playhouse
The Jackson Hole Playhouse is a very old building that has various times been a Ford showroom, a livery stable and a bowling alley. But now it’s a place for great dining and entertainment. We were divided into three large tables and served a multicourse meal which was wonderful, particularly my vegetarian pasta dish and the dessert. Throughout the meal our entertainers (some of whom were our servers) entered the room and sang songs.
The meal ended with a wonderful surprise. Day 2 was also Rebekah’s birthday and Adventure guide Dusty arranged a great ruse to get Rebekah to stand up after which all the performers surrounded her and sang happy birthday. She was suitably embarrassed and I was delighted. She also received a birthday card full of confetti.
Following dinner, we headed into the theater to see a full performance of Annie Get Your Gun. By full I mean two hours with intermission – this wasn’t just highlights, it was a full musical. I really appreciated that our guides made sure we knew that we were under no obligation to stay for the entire performance. If anyone wanted to leave at any time or during intermission, we could feel free. But the show was great, the time flew by and I don’t think anyone in our group left.
After the show we walked the block back to the Wort hotel for our final night there. We had already been told to make sure our bags were in front of our room the next morning so Disney could take care of getting them to our next destination. We prepared our bags and went to sleep. So much more adventure awaited us.